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KS Alternative Factor

I've clearly been out of touch...

Every once in awhile, something in LJ proves to me what an old dinosaur I truly am.

When I read the “Bonfire of the Digital Vanities” discussion at http://community.livejournal.com/fanficrants/3651014.html I realized how utterly out of touch I am with some current ideas in fandom.

Until I read this post – and, most particularly, the responses – I’d assumed that the reason fic disappeared from the net was because the author didn’t want to maintain her websites any longer. I had only the vaguest idea that people were deliberately removing their stories from archives, as well.



Some background: In the late 90s, every convention I attended had a “Net Vs. Zine” panel. (I’ve been a zine editor since the 1970s). Sometimes these panels could get quite vociferous. Every net fan who spoke up at those panels (or to me, in private conversations) said that the reason they posted their fic to the net instead of submitting stories to fanzines was that paper was ephemeral but the net granted their work permanence and immortality. That, no matter what happened to the author personally, her fiction would live on forever in byte form.

I had so internalized this POV that it truly never occured to me, until reading this discussion, that the currents and the cultural changes of fandom have obviously negated this reason – at least for some authors. (And I have to keep reminding myself that there has never been any human endeavor in which there is 100%, or 90%, or often even 50% consensus). (And I wonder if those late 90s net authors, assuming they’re still in fandom, feel the same way about this issue now.)

I was thinking for half a second that maybe my brain was stuck in 1999, until I recalled I’d heard this same argument – that the internet makes fanfic immortal - used extensively on some mailing lists I'm on within the last couple of years.

I’ve obviously been missing out on the other half of this issue.

I have been griping to my friends for a couple of years now that I hate the fact that so much net fic is so ephemeral; that stories literally vanish from one day to the next. I’ve made it a habit to always copy anything that I might want to keep to my hard drive, because chances are pretty good it'll be gone the next time I go to that site.

Last summer, I was just about to leave on a 10 day trip. I knew I would have little or no net access. I was reading some list mail the night before I left. An author posted that she would be taking down her website in one week's time, and suggested anyone who wanted copies of her work go there now, because soon it would be gone forever.

Arggh! Copying her fic onto my hard drive had been on my 'to do' list for ages. There was no way I could take the time to copy her fic that night; I had too much to do.

I saved the URL to her website. When I got back from my trip, sure enough, her website was gone. (Fortunately, someone told me about The Wayback Machine, and since I still had the URL I was able to go and copy all of her fic through that resource.)

I remember, as a teen, how much I loved to browse through my town's small library. Their budget was just about zero, so they relied mainly on donations, and many of their books were decades old. I was fascinated by the old novels, in particular, books dating from the 1890s to the 1940s. It was so interesting to contemplate the lives of these authors. The Victorian writers were long since dead, but their words still had their own separate existence, their own separate life from the author.

I've had discussions with several friends over the past 2 - 3 years about how one thing has been lost in the transition of fanfic from zines to the net. If a story is zine-published, it has a life independent from its author. The copies are out there in fandom, being loaned out, or resold. They're not going to disappear if a website is taken down, or an archive vanishes.

I’m still bemused by the irony that, as I mentioned, one of the earlier pro-net-publishing arguments was that the internet offered immortality, while paper was ephemeral. From what I've seen lately, it's rather the reverse.

Three months ago I was at a convention when a woman came up to me with a copy of a fan novel I co-wrote 25 years ago. She’d recently bought a used copy, and wanted to tell me how much she enjoyed it.

I haven’t written anything in that particular fandom for at least 15 years, but here was someone just discovering something I’d written so very long ago.

I was googling awhile back - I forget what I was actually looking for - but I stumbled across a discussion on a message board for that particular fandom. People were discussing my novel. In that novel, I’d spackled a canon event, and I had also come up with an “isn’t this cool?” idea. One person was getting very heated in the discussion – she was insisting that “those ideas” came from my fan novel, and people should stop treating those ideas as if they had occurred on the original show.

I was bemused by this discussion – I had no idea I had created “fanon”. It was surprising to find that my novel had become such a part of the fandom that someone felt the need to remind people that my ideas were fanon, not canon.

I found this all very interesting, even though I feel utterly distanced from the work itself. I wrote that novel so long ago it feels like another lifetime.

Now, I think a lot of my early writing sucked, but if I had the magic ability to make my words vanish from the pages of all those old zines, would I do it? No. Whatever the quality of my work, I feel that I participated in and made a contribution to fannish culture – that all fic contributes to fannish culture and carries on our conversations – and that when fic disappears the fannish culture is diminished as well. (Quite obviously, many people’s mileage varies. And quite obviously, people have the right to do whatever they want with their work, for whatever reason.)

It’s also true that fandom is so huge and so diffuse and so balkanized that it’s virtually impossible to read everything in any of the big fandoms, even if you’re only reading one sub-category (a particular pairing, for example). It’s been awhile since I really felt like I was missing out on anything. I rely on recs from friends, for the most part, to guide me to the “good stuff”.

Well, I’m chalking this down to the, “You learn something new every day.” It just still feels odd that what I’ve assumed for years, and have been told by numerous people, was a bedrock reason for net publishing - clearly isn’t.

(I’ve also been told on occasion I have the soul of a librarian, so that is probably a big part of my mindset.)

I think this link is apropos to the subject. It’s an article from the 9-13-06 Los Angeles Times, entitled: “Unable to Repeat the Past: Storing information is easier than ever, but it's also never been so easy to lose it -- forever. We could end up with a modern history gap.”

Here's an interesting quote from the article: "Leading archivists said that the records of George W. Bush's presidency would probably be far less complete than those of Abraham Lincoln's."

http://palimpsest.stanford.edu/byform/mailing-lists/amia-l/2006/09/msg00150.html

Comments

I live out of touch

I've taken fic down due to internet dogfights on various fanfic sites. There's a real Alpha fan mindset in some of them (it's always been that way, though, as you know). I write because I enjoy it and it's healing for me, so I stay out of the fray as best I can. When I want to detach from that fan-eat-fan energy, I yank down the fic. The stories were all still available at other archives, though -- squidge, ffn, aff, etc. -- just not on my own personal archive.

I don't even read stuff about LBH and LWB any longer (or any of my fic, really). The first time I stumbled on a discussion about the B7 novels (and the comments ranged from very kind to vicious), I about had a stroke. lol You're a braver writer than I am. I now stay out of all larger conversation circles regarding fan fic. My tummy feels a lot better for it.

The fanfic rant you linked to was interesting.

>"Leading archivists said that the records of George W. Bush's presidency >would probably be far less complete than those of Abraham Lincoln's."

Now if only we could chisel the memory of it out of our forebrains ...

Re: I live out of touch

>>>There's a real Alpha fan mindset in some of them (it's always been that way, though, as you know).

So very true! Lots of people want to be "Queen Bee". It's the same in any human endeavor. I always say, "everything I know about life I learned in my father's congregation". Some of those church ladies would scare the crap out of some of the fannish Queen Bees.

I do my damndest to ignore people like that.

>>>When I want to detach from that fan-eat-fan energy, I yank down the fic. The stories were all still available at other archives, though -- squidge, ffn, aff, etc. -- just not on my own personal archive.

That's great you keep your stories available on archives. I've archived some of my older work (on ksarchive.com), and plan to put up more as I have the time. (Scanning in old typewritten stories is a big pain in the rear, though.) I keep on tossing around the idea of having a personal web page, but I've never been all that motivated to do so. Having my work on a large fannish archive suits me just fine.

>>>I don't even read stuff about LBH and LWB any longer (or any of my fic, really). The first time I stumbled on a discussion about the B7 novels (and the comments ranged from very kind to vicious), I about had a stroke.

Of course, some people are just idiots. There's (1) constructive criticism, (2) people who just like to whine and wank about any damn thing, and (3) people who just don't get it.

Re # 3, ages ago someone reviewed one of my stories, and She Just Didn't Get It. Fortunately, I'd heard from several other people, prior to the publication of the review, who absolutely "got it".

If I hadn't heard from those people, however, her review could have been a legitimate commentary on my writing - i.e., if she didn't understand my point, then I hadn't properly explained it. As it was, I knew that the story I wrote touched on issues that affected her personally, and I wasn't all that surprised that she didn't get it.

>>>You're a braver writer than I am.

I'm not saying I don't get annoyed or upset with people who criticize my work - I do. It's just that, in a way, half of my brain reacts emotionally, and half reacts with detachment. For the first few months after I write something, I'm very sensitive to commentary about it. After that, something in my brain separates emotionally from the story, and while I still do care about what people say, it doesn't have the same impact.

I like sending my stories out into the world, via print, waving goodbye, and getting to work on the next piece.

I think part of my attitude is due to editing zines, particularly TWODS. People would send lots of LOCs to TWODS, and invariably I would get:

Story A sucked! Why did you ever publish it?
and
Story A rocked! That was the best story in the zine.

Or,
You publish too many (fill in the blank) type of stories/articles,etc., and not enough of (fill in the blank).

And the next person would say the reverse.

(I would usually publish these LOCs one right after another as a subtle reminder that the editor's job can be a very tough one, and there's no pleasing everyone.)

Re: I live out of touch

>"everything I know about life I learned in my father's >congregation"

Yup, I remember your tales of those folks. My Aunt Retha would have gotten along well with them. lol

One thing I've noticed about online fandom is it tends to be maybe 50% meaner than fandom when we were youngsters. It's probably just the anonymity factor, but I've had gangs of 17 year old Barbieshippers assail me on forums in ways that I'd never, ever experienced in non-net-fandom. Or maybe the moon is full and I'm turning into my mother. (eek)

Anyway, sorry I was late responding to this, but wanted to add the extra comment.

Re: I live out of touch

>>>One thing I've noticed about online fandom is it tends to be maybe 50% meaner than fandom when we were youngsters.

Very true.

The nastiness was, of course, there in the old days; I got my share of anonymous snail mail letters over the years from people wanting to rant, but not wanting to stand behind their opinions. That, of course, required work (writing/sealing/stamping the envelope) and money (postage stamp), so it wasn't all that common for people to do this sort of bs.

Now, though, all one has to do is press "click" and feel proud of oneself for acting like a rude schmuck behind the safety of one's screenname. So much less work...!

>>>It's probably just the anonymity factor, but I've had gangs of 17 year old Barbieshippers assail me on forums in ways that I'd never, ever experienced in non-net-fandom. Or maybe the moon is full and I'm turning into my mother. (eek)

*curious* - what's a Barbieshipper?

It's not just younger people doing this crap. I joined a DS board recently because some members were going off on a rant against (long-established) SG policies, and being quite rude and abusive in their opinions. But when I had a look through, I decided not to bother posting anything, because I recognized most of the people posting as having been in fandom for many years and just indulging in the same sort of behavior they've always indulged in. (Their speciality: "Going for the gold in the "Jumping to Conclusions" category in the Olympics!) Just in nastier language, because they figured they were anonymous. Except that they had enough info in their conversations with each other that it was easy for me to figure out who they are.

>>>Anyway, sorry I was late responding to this, but wanted to add the extra comment.

I'm almost always bad at answering anything on a timely basis, so never worry about that...!

you're probably one of the only people I can discuss this with, heh

Yet again I feel different from many in fandom:

Every net fan who spoke up at those panels (or to me, in private conversations) said that the reason they posted their fic to the net instead of submitting stories to fanzines was that paper was ephemeral but the net granted their work permanence and immortality. That, no matter what happened to the author personally, her fiction would live on forever in byte form.

That's never been my reason for submitting my stuff mainly to the intarwebs instead of zines--not even a little bit. My most important reason is that unfortunately, I need the satisfaction of one or two people replying with "Kewl! ^_^" after I've just finished a story, and most of my zine-publications I never really hear anything from. I just submit to zines to get a wider audience, but I never really know if anyone is reading or enjoying my stories once they're out there and printed.

When people take their stuff down off their personal website and off of archives, it does hurt fandom. That's why I advocate posting everything possible to ASCEM, so that it'll be searchable in Google Groups archives. True, if Google goes bust we're all screwed, but at least it's something. After all, there aren't zines for many of the fics being posted--TOS zine-scene for explicit het isn't very healthy these days, is it?

Also, if things are only in zines, they may be preserved but they're also less easy to find. I firmly believe in wallpapering the world with K/S in any way one can. That way, not only is there even less chance of it getting destroyed forever, but more people will be able to enjoy that extended existence.

I love the story of the woman having to tell a group of people that your idea was only fanon, not canon. How cool! But then, if it was going to happen to anyone, it would be you :D

The thing is, Hy--who people used to assume was anti-zine but was only pro-"wallpapering", as I put it--has the same librarian thing as you do. She even wrote a piece of fanfic in which one of our guys gives the other the lost Library of Alexandria (on disc) as a present. If all the copies of some zine are lost, somehow, the net provides a shiny backup. After all, we in K/S may have the amazingness of the lending library, but I don't know if the other vintage fandoms do--AND, isn't there a K/S zine from waaaay back in the day that only a few people have copies of and they won't lend them out? Like, one of the first stories, or something?

Re: you're probably one of the only people I can discuss this with, heh - Part 1

>>>That's never been my reason for submitting my stuff mainly to the intarwebs instead of zines--not even a little bit. My most important reason is that unfortunately, I need the satisfaction of one or two people replying with "Kewl! ^_^" after I've just finished a story, and most of my zine-publications I never really hear anything from.

That instant feedback is wonderful!

>>>I just submit to zines to get a wider audience, but I never really know if anyone is reading or enjoying my stories once they're out there and printed.

Other fandoms - Sentinel, for example - have another solution to this. Many times, stories are net-published first, and then later on are published in zine form, often after the author does a rewrite of the original story, and perhaps adds some additional material.

>>>When people take their stuff down off their personal website and off of archives, it does hurt fandom. That's why I advocate posting everything possible to ASCEM, so that it'll be searchable in Google Groups archives.

You know, I hadn't even thought of posting any of my work to ASCEM. And I've never paid any attention to the procedure. How do I go about doing that?

My comments in my entire post are actually for fandoms other than Trek. Trek has good archives, and it seems relatively free of people who pull their fic from the net "just because".

Someone at Shore Leave told me she knows people who, when they switch fandoms, they take down all their fic from their previous fandom. (My jaw dropped. Why?????)

This is their right, of course, but I truly do not understand this. Just the idea of deleting my fic feels like deleting a part of myself. I may be a better writer now, I am in a completely different part of my life, but that does not negate who I was back then. And those stories reflect my past self.

Even if I don't particularly like something I wrote all those years ago, if someone wants to read it, why should I object?

Awhile back, Jenna interviewed me for the K/S Press, and one of the questions she asked was, was there anything I regretted writing? I said:

"There’s no story I regret writing. I do regret that I didn’t wait to develop my writing skills before I tackled something as ambitious as "Beyond the Barrier" (California K/S, 1984). I was going for Big Themes, but I didn’t have the writing ability to achieve my goal."

I wrote a whole bunch more in that interview about my feelings regarding that story, but the fact is, I felt that story was a failure. I was surprised when, after that interview was published, several people wrote to tell me that they really liked that story. So... Cool! I would still love to rewrite it beginning-to-end, but instead I plan to scan it some time and send it to Side By Side.

I wrote too much, so I need to post this in 2 pieces.

Re: you're probably one of the only people I can discuss this with, heh - Part 1

You know, I hadn't even thought of posting any of my work to ASCEM. And I've never paid any attention to the procedure. How do I go about doing that?

I'll email you--I promise I will. I know you've asked more than once in the past few weeks and I need to get around to that.

Do you have another older zine story that'll be ready for posting in the next two weeks or so? The holiday calendar would love to include one of your works.

I really can't understand taking down all the stories in a fandom that no longer interests a writer. I left up my old Snape het, didn't I? Why? Because... why not? Then again, I'm the type of person who hates it when they discontinue yarns and restaurants take things off the menu for no reason, etc.

Re: you're probably one of the only people I can discuss this with, heh - Part 1

>>>Do you have another older zine story that'll be ready for posting in the next two weeks or so? The holiday calendar would love to include one of your works.

I'm hoping to finish my dragon story for you over the Thanksgiving weekend. I haven't done any work on it at all, other than the opening paragraphs; I've been too tired out from that throat/ear infection I had in October. I was off work for a whole week, and I hardly ever take sick time off from work.

I'm finally beginning to "feel like myself" again and I'm hoping to actually write this piece. It won't be a long piece, though. I'm trying to come up with some 'holiday theme' for it - that shouldn't be hard, since it's an alien planet, and so I can come up with an alien holiday to go along with the dragons. :-)

Anyway, if I finish that, you can use it for either your dragon fest (very late) or Advent or both.

If I don't finish it, I will scan in an old zine story and send it to you.

>>>I really can't understand taking down all the stories in a fandom that no longer interests a writer. I left up my old Snape het, didn't I? Why? Because... why not?

I just can't imagine why anyone would do this. I guess my mind just doesn't work that way. Writing is so much a part of me that I can't imagine deleting anything I've written. (Well, once I complete it and it's ready to go; I've tossed out whole portions of WIPs.)

I wrote a lot of "Star Wars" and "Dark Shadows" fanfic in the 70s and 80s, and every once in awhile someone reads an old zine and comments on the DS stories. I can't even put my mind back into writing for either of those fandoms anymore, but if someone wants to read it, why not?

My feelings about this issue are not just about the writing itself, but rather my perception of fandom as a shared community that is enriched by the contributions of everyone in it. Good or bad or mediocre, I felt my writing contributed to those fandoms; that my work was part of the whole fannish community. I see this as contributing to a shared reality; a shared reality which grows and becomes more diverse and interesting and complex with each piece of fan fiction that is added to the whole. And even if I'm no longer participating in that particular universe, why would I make my work unavailable to people who are?

Particularly since new people find fandoms all the time. A friend of mine recently got into "Smallville" and she's been very frustrated to find out that many stories recommended her as "classics" in this fandom are no longer on the net, and some of this is because the writers in question take down their old fic when they move into a new fandom.

And some people switch fandoms every few months! That is *so* not me... ;-)

>>>Then again, I'm the type of person who hates it when they discontinue yarns and restaurants take things off the menu for no reason, etc.

I am *so* with you on that! I'm always disappointed when items I like are discontinued, restaurants get rid of my favorite dishes, etc.

Re: you're probably one of the only people I can discuss this with, heh - Part 2

>>>After all, there aren't zines for many of the fics being posted--TOS zine-scene for explicit het isn't very healthy these days, is it?

Very true! Aside from "CC", who maintains the 1001 Trek Tales site, I haven't seen anyone publish het TOS fic in zine form in ages. And her most recent zine was her own novel.

>>>Also, if things are only in zines, they may be preserved but they're also less easy to find. I firmly believe in wallpapering the world with K/S in any way one can. That way, not only is there even less chance of it getting destroyed forever, but more people will be able to enjoy that extended existence.

I advocate everything - publish in zine form, put it on an archive (or several archives), have it on your personal website. That way, more people have the potential of finding it.

I just wish people in other fandoms felt the same way! So many people only publish on LJ these days, and unless people set up good LJ communities, it is so hard to find fic on LJ.

>>>I love the story of the woman having to tell a group of people that your idea was only fanon, not canon. How cool! But then, if it was going to happen to anyone, it would be you :D

That was so entertaining! This woman had gone on a long rant - part of her tone was almost as if she thought I was "dictating my ideas" to fandom. Um... I wrote that novel in 1980. If other people chose to pick up and run with my ideas, hey, cool, but I certainly wasn't telling anyone what to write, or that my ideas of the characters were the only valid ones. What I thought was funny about the whole thing was, I spackled that canon plot point one way in that novel, but I went in an entirely different direction with it in another (short) story. I'm all about exploring the alternatives, not trying to set any sort of party line.

>>>The thing is, Hy--who people used to assume was anti-zine but was only pro-"wallpapering", as I put it--has the same librarian thing as you do. She even wrote a piece of fanfic in which one of our guys gives the other the lost Library of Alexandria (on disc) as a present.

Oh wow, what a wonderful idea! Gives me chills, actually.

I am *so* into the librarian thing! I read an article in the LA Times yesterday about the woman who wrote the Statue of Liberty poem ("the huddled masses", etc.) After her death, her family destroyed all of her unpublished work. I just *hate* hearing about things like that. I don't even like hearing about an author destroying her own work, but having someone else make the decision for her, after her death...!

>>>If all the copies of some zine are lost, somehow, the net provides a shiny backup. After all, we in K/S may have the amazingness of the lending library, but I don't know if the other vintage fandoms do--

A couple of the other vintage fandoms - Starsky & Hutch and, particular, The Professionals - are doing a great job with archiving older stories. Pros used to have a lending library, I don't know about S/H. But they have been very proactive in getting authors of old zine stories to give permission to put their work up on the net.

Once I complete my two new zines, I'm going to contact a couple of friends of mine and suggest they send their old work to Side by Side or put it on the K/S Archive.

Re: you're probably one of the only people I can discuss this with, heh - Part 2

This woman had gone on a long rant - part of her tone was almost as if she thought I was "dictating my ideas" to fandom.

I hope you were able to successfully defend yourself. I just hate the idea of anyone having bad misconceptions about my friends.


Once I complete my two new zines, I'm going to contact a couple of friends of mine and suggest they send their old work to Side by Side or put it on the K/S Archive.


Thanks so much! You do fandom so many wonderful services.

Re: you're probably one of the only people I can discuss this with, heh - Part 2

>>>Once I complete my two new zines, I'm going to contact a couple of friends of mine and suggest they send their old work to Side by Side or put it on the K/S Archive.
>>>Thanks so much! You do fandom so many wonderful services.

I just heard from one woman and she's more than happy to have her work on the net. So I'm going to discuss details with her after Thanksgiving, then see about getting her stories scanned or retyped.

Re: you're probably one of the only people I can discuss this with, heh - Part 2

Yay!!!!!

Re: you're probably one of the only people I can discuss this with, heh Part 3

>>>AND, isn't there a K/S zine from waaaay back in the day that only a few people have copies of and they won't lend them out? Like, one of the first stories, or something?

I'm not entirely sure what this might be. Maybe "circuit stories"? There were a few of those, prior to the publication of the first zines, and prior to the publication of the first K/S story in an issue of "Grup" in 1974. People would write K/S stories and pass them around to their friends through the mail.

I've done lots of interviews with 1970s era fans for Jenna's K/S Legacy project, and a couple of the British fans recalled these "circuit stories". (That's a term from "The Professionals" fandom, BTW.) There was actually a circuit "zine" - one woman had written 2 - 3 K/S stories and reproduced them on a ditto machine, and sent this to a few friends. But there were probably less than a dozen copies of this in existence.

If that's what you're thinking about, from what I understand, it's possible that no copies of these stories even exist anymore. Dittos fade away after a few years.

But as far as actual zines, no. I'm familiar with everything that was actually published in K/S, and I can't think of one single instance of a fanzine that's completely inaccessible.

But if you hear any more details about this, let me know.

irony and semicolon

(they were always the right answers to any test question we didn't understand in the Language and Composition class I took in 11th grade.)

So--
The being who posted the fanficrants post changed her own post? HAHAHAHAHA. So much for preservation of history, or whatever. The whole thing is so ironically cute that it almost has a "sociology thesis" feel to it.

Re: irony and semicolon

ROTFL! That is so funny!
I think there are two sides of the medal. The internet distributes fanfic in a way never known before, whereas zines are hard to get (esp. overseas and per ebay, as opposed to when you attend a real con). And the big archives like trekiverse e.g. are a good way to preserve your fiction.

However, I also noticed the trend of vanishing websites and try to save as much as possible. I also frequently use wget to dl complete sites. Sometimes, old chunk is preserved eternally in the net, and sometimes sites are vanishing over night. You never really know.

I didn't see anyone removing fanfic from trekiverse, but it might have happened too and would probably be done. The author does have that right in fandom, it's kind of a common courtesy.
Wow, what a kettle of fish. I sorta have mixed feeling about it. On the one hand, it's the author's right to do what he/she pleases with her fic, but totally erasing it seems a bit of overkill. However, I have a story (makes ugly face) out there that I'd like to zap into non-existence, so I can see that point. I like contributing to zines 'cause they're on paper and therefore seem more, um, permanent. Really, I see both sides. Of course, people DO need to chill. lol
I swing back and forth on this but it does seem to me that the net isn't the saving depository of fanfic we've all been led to believe it is. There have been more times that I can count when I've returned to someone's website only to find it gone. And what of those of us who don't have the skill to create our own website? Luckily, the four fandoms I write in all have extensive and well-run archives...for now. Still, I see myself sticking to sending my stories to zine publishers whenever I can.

Here's an interesting quote from the article: "Leading archivists said that the records of George W. Bush's presidency would probably be far less complete than those of Abraham Lincoln's."


We should be so lucky.
>>>I swing back and forth on this but it does seem to me that the net isn't the saving depository of fanfic we've all been led to believe it is. There have been more times that I can count when I've returned to someone's website only to find it gone.

I've been complaining about that very thing for a couple of years now. Because it's not just websites that vanish - whole archives have vanished. There was one called "The Complete Kingdom of Slash" which disappeared overnight.

I'm an advocate of both zine publishing and net publishing.