1998

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1998 was a busy year in the history of fan fiction. The Internet was taking hold, with a large influx of new people as a result of universities providing Internet access and the continued growth and popularity of services like American On-line, Compuserve and Prodigy.

Technological innovations and tools that would be fundamental in later fan fiction history were released this year. Among these was the introduction of MySQL, necessary to run some of the larger, automated fan fiction archives. PayPal was founded which allowed for easier purchasing of fan related materials like fanzines and allowed for sites to generate donations to help fund their continued existence.

In the world of canon universes, a number of important things were happening. The X-Files movie came out on the big screen. Babylon 5 was in its last season. Buffy: The Vampire Slayer started its second season on the air. Pokémon went into syndication. DragonBall Z was aired on the Cartoon Network. The first Harry Potter book is published in the United States. Xena and Star Trek Voyager entered their fourth seasons.

Fan fiction archives were founded and existing ones faced a number of issues. On October 15 of this year, FanFiction.Net was founded by Xing Li. The repercussions of the founding of this archive would be felt for years to come as a certain amount of fannish terminology and discussion, posting habits, centralization of small fan fiction communities revolve around the site. Other archives founded this year include the X-Force Fan Fiction archive in the X-Men fan fiction community, The Frohike Fan Fiction Archive was founded by Raine and Maria in the X-Files fan fiction community, and God Awful Trek Fan Fiction was created. Gossamer, the premiere X-Files fan fiction archive, faced a number of issues this year. The Simplenet host was forced to shut down for bandwidth reasons, Birdfeeder needed a new server and X-Philes faced traffic issues. (Heinau)


Other things were happening in the fan fiction community. In the comic book fan fiction community, the CBFF Awards were created. On March 12, Sofie Werkers founded the Rareslash mailing list. Out Side The Lines was created by Susan Crites and Indigo. Beginning around October, the importance of Alt.Tv.X-files.Creative in X-Files fan fiction community declined.

Discussion wise, several fan fiction communities discussed slash and various defense of slash fan created articles were distributed in the fannish community. On ASCEM, related dialogue involves the issue of if slash and het need to be rated differently. ATXC discussed ActorFic. On b5creative, authorfic was being written communally.


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