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Alternate Realities: Does it mean every fanfic is canon as a different


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#1 Offline MataNuiFilms

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Posted Dec 31 2013 - 01:33 PM

I've been putting some hard thought into this question: Since Greg has mentioned alternate realities, (ex. The Kingdom, Toa Empire) doesn't that technically mean that writings like fanfics in which alternate realities change what happened in the main canon universe count as alternate realities and therefore are canon as a different dimensions?


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#2 Offline The Legendary TNT

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Posted Dec 31 2013 - 02:14 PM

Well, you can certainly headcanon it is true, since there are an infinite amount of alternate universes. However, every single fanfic that takes place in an alternate universe can't become official since Greg can't read (and doesn't read) every single fanfic in an alternate universe. Only the ones that have been approved to be canon can be official. However, this does not mean that fanfics can't be thought of as a possibility as an alternate universe. 

 

IMO, I feel like if someone makes an exceptionally good alternate universe fanfic, it should be considered by the community to be made an official alternate universe. But I guess that is what the Expanded Multiverse is supposed to do. But, it kind of confuses me so, I never really followed it. But that's just my opinion.


Edited by TNT-Vezon with an Olmak, Dec 31 2013 - 02:15 PM.

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#3 Online Brooklyn Pace-Carlisle

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Posted Dec 31 2013 - 03:50 PM

Hah. 

 

No.

 

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#4 Offline LordofBionicles

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Posted Dec 31 2013 - 04:11 PM

Technically yes, just like the cancelled BIONICLE movie, If I'm not mistaken I recall Greg accepted it to happen in an alternate dimension.


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#5 Offline The Legendary TNT

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Posted Dec 31 2013 - 04:33 PM

Technically yes, just like the cancelled BIONICLE movie, If I'm not mistaken I recall Greg accepted it to happen in an alternate dimension.

Really? When did he do that?


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#6 Offline LordofBionicles

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Posted Dec 31 2013 - 05:19 PM

 

Technically yes, just like the cancelled BIONICLE movie, If I'm not mistaken I recall Greg accepted it to happen in an alternate dimension.

Really? When did he do that?

 

I think it was on a pm someone posted on the Official Greg Quotes or some topic alike, it was definately in the Old Archives


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#7 Offline bonesiii

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Posted Dec 31 2013 - 05:21 PM

Yes. Greg confirmed all fanfics count as alternate dimensions. :)

 

Of course, we need not always see them that way; a lot of people like to imagine some taking place in "gaps" in the Core Dimension. But the option is available for fanfic writers with an official nod from LEGO. ^_^


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#8 Offline Katuko

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Posted Dec 31 2013 - 07:17 PM

Not every fanfic would count. Those involving humans, for example, could not be considered for canon, because humans are confirmed not to exist in the BIONICLE universe; alternate dimensions or not.
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#9 Offline LordofBionicles

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Posted Dec 31 2013 - 07:28 PM

Not every fanfic would count. Those involving humans, for example, could not be considered for canon, because humans are confirmed not to exist in the BIONICLE universe; alternate dimensions or not.

Very true Katuko.


Edited by LordofBionicles, Dec 31 2013 - 07:28 PM.

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#10 Offline Tanu Toa of Earth

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Posted Dec 31 2013 - 09:49 PM

Technically, I would think so... Despite the apparent nonexistence of humans from the BIONICLE universe, their not existing as one of the possibilities in an infinite amount of alternate universes just seems unlikely...


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#11 Online Pupwa21

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Posted Jan 01 2014 - 12:12 AM

So does this mean SHIPPING fan fictions are also Canon?
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#12 Offline Toa R. Lih Nit

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Posted Jan 01 2014 - 02:12 AM

So does this mean SHIPPING fan fictions are also Canon?

I hope so.

The "emotional glitch" feels incomplete without romantic love.


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#13 Offline northmarch

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Posted Jan 01 2014 - 03:39 AM

There could even be an alt reality where Bionicle is just a cool toy line! :P
Yeah, fanfics, comics, dreams would only be the tinniest portion of potential alt realities. If alt realities are real then there is probably a version of Spherus Magna where Agori chat online about an old toy line called Human History :P

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#14 Offline Sordin

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Posted Jan 01 2014 - 09:32 AM

That sounds pretty cool, and that means one fan fiction character being in possession of a mask of dimensional gates means: INFINITE CROSSOVER OPPORTUNITIES!


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#15 Online Pupwa21

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Posted Jan 01 2014 - 12:50 PM

That sounds pretty cool, and that means one fan fiction character being in possession of a mask of dimensional gates means: INFINITE CROSSOVER OPPORTUNITIES!

Hold it buster, The Olmak only covers pocket dimensions of the Core dimensions.

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#16 Offline Sordin

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Posted Jan 01 2014 - 12:58 PM

 

That sounds pretty cool, and that means one fan fiction character being in possession of a mask of dimensional gates means: INFINITE CROSSOVER OPPORTUNITIES!

Hold it buster, The Olmak only covers pocket dimensions of the Core dimensions.

 

I felt a great disturbance in the Fanfiction, as if millions of crossover opportunities suddenly cried out in terror and were silenced.


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#17 Offline bonesiii

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Posted Jan 01 2014 - 01:08 PM

That sounds pretty cool, and that means one fan fiction character being in possession of a mask of dimensional gates means: INFINITE CROSSOVER OPPORTUNITIES!

Hold it buster, The Olmak only covers pocket dimensions of the Core dimensions.

The right term is "alternate" (plus pocket). Pocket dimensions are technically parts of the Core Dimension, like the Field of Shadow, while alternate dimensions like those Vezon and Takanuva have traveled to are separate timelines (each with their own alternate Field of Shadow, etc.). Common mistake, just don't wanna let confusion happen.

 

However, keep in mind that's the Olmak from the Core Dimension. ;)

 

To the question of whether alternate dimensions with humans, etc. can exist canonically, well, IMO Tanu is right. Greg confirmed there are infinite alternate timelines. Physics says there should be an alternate timeline for everything. We just wouldn't call most of them "Bionicle" because they'd be too different. And they wouldn't branch off of the one we call the "Core Dimension." So yes to crossovers. And there should be other dimensions where an alternate version of the Olmak would allow them, for example.

 

And technically yes to romance too. Basically anything. But none of them are "canon" in the same sense as the Core Dimension or the Kingdom etc.


Edited by bonesiii, Jan 01 2014 - 01:10 PM.

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#18 Offline Katuko

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Posted Jan 01 2014 - 02:46 PM

So does this mean SHIPPING fan fictions are also Canon?


In a way. The characters are unlikely to make full-on romances a thing because alt!universes only exist from forked choice paths - a character may live or die and cause a split, but you can't really justify, say, a Krika x Takanuva ship because neither of them are likely to end up in a position where they'd even consider a "ship". A "ship" story where Hewkii decides to stay and make his life with Macku instead of going to Voya Nui, though, that could very well work.

To the question of whether alternate dimensions with humans, etc. can exist canonically, well, IMO Tanu is right. Greg confirmed there are infinite alternate timelines. Physics says there should be an alternate timeline for everything. We just wouldn't call most of them "Bionicle" because they'd be too different. And they wouldn't branch off of the one we call the "Core Dimension." So yes to crossovers. And there should be other dimensions where an alternate version of the Olmak would allow them, for example.


I would say no to this, actually, just because of common sense. While it's interesting to explore crossover potential such as "BIONICLE meets Transformers", I do not think the Olmak could actually access actual crossover universes because "BIONICLE is BIONICLE". Maybe an alternate universe of BIONICLE will indeed be suspiciously similar to Transformers, but it could never be canon.

Fan fiction is otherwise a very interesting subject and opens up for a lot of interesting observations. Sometimes there are fan theories good enough to be canonized, and in theory a lot of fan fiction could be canonized right away without any real trouble; because it sticks to known story facts and only leaves it to invent some new characters elsewhere in the same world. But the less anchored a piece of fan fiction is to the actual canon, the more detached it becomes from BIONICLE as a whole.

If you read a story and cannot tell that it is set in the BIONICLE universe without being told, I'd say it's out as far as alternate dimensions go too. For example, writing about the "light beings" which Brutaka mentioned would only be BIONICLE-related because he has mentioned them -- if he hadn't, a story about living light entities could just as well be any other fictional universe. If the story begins in the Matoran Universe and has a character dimension-jump, it's fair game to say that whatever strange place they end up in still "BIONICLE" in a way, but due to previously established canon ("humans don't exist in BIONICLE") dumping a character onto human-inhabited Earth is still not eligible for any sort of canon no matter how many "choice path splits" one uses to explain it.

Edited by Katuko, Jan 01 2014 - 02:49 PM.

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#19 Offline NuvaTube

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Posted Jan 02 2014 - 09:54 AM

If there are an infinite number of alternate universes, where anything that could possibly have happened has, then you could say anything is possible in terms of crossovers, romance, humans etc. Anything. Infinity is a pretty amazing concept. For example, the irrational number Pi, whose decimal places go on forever, technically must contain your phone number at some point. And the phone numbers of everyone you know too. That's what you can get with infinity (and irrationality).

 

So theoretically, yes to everything. Everything that's physically possible (which could be a key things actually since Bionicle physics is said to be different to real world physics (which really really really really annoys me)). But specific universes must be approved by LEGO before it can be called canon, as opposed to possible.

 

Basically what's been said here :L


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#20 Offline bonesiii

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Posted Jan 02 2014 - 01:30 PM

Everything that's physically possible (which could be a key things actually since Bionicle physics is said to be different to real world physics (which really really really really annoys me))

Ah, but theoretically there can be universe branches where physics works differently too. Incidentally, being annoyed at the idea of Bionicle physics being different seems to imply a misunderstanding of why. In my old Wacky Physics topic I pointed out that conceptually it is valid to see the "root physics" of Bionicle as the same, but different "physics machines" built upon it that would hypothetically be possible in our world, just not existent. Like, a car works differently from a horse, but if you live in the Middle Ages, a car is just as possible then too. Just hasn't happened to have been invented yet. Theoretically the same principle can apply on smaller scales of "machinery" too, including molecular, quantum, etc.

 

So, in essence any variations on physics should be possible somehow or another, as long as there's a mechanism. :)

 

And of course, it's unrealistic to expect fiction to have defined mechanisms for everything. :P

 

 

 

While it's interesting to explore crossover potential such as "BIONICLE meets Transformers", I do not think the Olmak could actually access actual crossover universes because "BIONICLE is BIONICLE".

I don't see how that follows. Again, the Core Dimension Olmak cannot, but there would be Olmaks in alternate Bionicle dimensions too, which might work differently. Just saying "Bionicle is Bionicle" is just a label. A crossover would be between Bionicle and "not-Bionicle". That's what the word crossover means, in fact...

 

If you're saying it wouldn't happen in LEGO-produced canon, sure. But that wasn't the topic question.


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#21 Offline Katuko

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Posted Jan 02 2014 - 02:20 PM

While it's interesting to explore crossover potential such as "BIONICLE meets Transformers", I do not think the Olmak could actually access actual crossover universes because "BIONICLE is BIONICLE".

I don't see how that follows. Again, the Core Dimension Olmak cannot, but there would be Olmaks in alternate Bionicle dimensions too, which might work differently. Just saying "Bionicle is Bionicle" is just a label. A crossover would be between Bionicle and "not-Bionicle". That's what the word crossover means, in fact...
 
If you're saying it wouldn't happen in LEGO-produced canon, sure. But that wasn't the topic question.


Fan fics are free to do whatever they like, of course. I'm not debating that.

The topic asks "Alternate Realities: Does it mean every fanfic is canon?", and the answer is simply that no, anything involving humans or non-BIONICLE characters could never be BIONICLE canon. The Mask of Dimensional Gates excuse can only be stretched so far before we hit that barricade, and it is one of the few limits we can confirm - not for any "real" in-story reason, but because that is just how it works according to official sources. BIONICLE can not do a canon crossover.

Fanon has no limits, and thus is pretty much pointless to debate. If you want Tahu to blow up Voldemort using a Spartan Laser, and then high-five Optimus Prime while Commander Shepard plays the Super Mario theme on a Gaffophone in the background... no objections here. That would be pretty awesome. :) But you can't have Brutaka pop in with an Olmak and call it "potentially canon" just because the Olmak can travel between dimensions, know what I mean? It's pretty obviously a situation that can safely be labeled as "impossible" as far as canonization goes.

Fanon that anchors itself in the BIONICLE universe qualifies as "possibly canon". Fanon that breaks a bit with established canon qualifies as "possibly canon as an alternate universe". Fanon that involves crossovers are just "not canon".

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#22 Offline Primis

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Posted Jan 02 2014 - 02:48 PM

BIONICLE fanfics aren't and shouldn't be any more canon than My Immortal would be for Harry Potter.

 

No matter how good the fanfic might be, and there are a lot of really good ones, it's just a terrible idea.


Edited by Primis, Jan 02 2014 - 02:48 PM.

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#23 Offline NuvaTube

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Posted Jan 02 2014 - 04:47 PM

BIONICLE fanfics aren't and shouldn't be any more canon than My Immortal would be for Harry Potter.

 

No matter how good the fanfic might be, and there are a lot of really good ones, it's just a terrible idea.

 

Well, none of them are canon. But the established canon does not say definitely that they couldn't be canon is all, even if the never will be :)

 

Does that mean pretty much anything could be Bionicle Fanon? o.O

 

To put it in the context of something else, say you watch a Harry Potter fan fic. Your main character doesn't really do anything impressive, just has a plausible wizard life withing the bounds of Harry Potter lore, maybe they see Harry Potter one time but don't affect the canon story. It's entirely possible that your fan fic is possible, and compatible with the official HP canon, even if its not and never will be. Same sorta thing, except we're saying since every possibility in Bionicle actually exists in an alternate universe...


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#24 Offline Omega12

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Posted Jan 02 2014 - 06:49 PM

So there could be an alternate universe where Tahu was named William Furno "Toa" are mass produced.
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#25 Offline The Legendary TNT

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Posted Jan 02 2014 - 08:00 PM

So there could be an alternate universe where Tahu was named William Furno "Toa" are mass produced.

No.

 

 

So, I have a rather dumb question: Do fan comics technically count as fanfics? So could, say, Spoofquest be considered as a possible alt. universe?


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#26 Offline bonesiii

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Posted Jan 02 2014 - 11:16 PM

BIONICLE can not do a canon crossover.

But again, what do you mean by "Bionicle" here? LEGO-company-produced Bionicle cannot, but it also cannot do the fanfics for legal reasons, so that is technically irrelevant to this question. Here's another problem with the idea -- say the interdimensional (even inter-tree, rather than just inter-branch) device comes from a non-Bionicle dimension. Is there a magical lockout on all Bionicle dimensions? What would fuel this? There's no evidence for such a thing any more than there would be evidence against alternate versions of the Olmak having different rules. :)

 

I think you're resisting the idea of saying "Tahu meets Sharknado is canon!!!11!!" and I getcha. But technically what Greg has confirmed logically means that anything goes under the "fanfics are alternate dimensions" rule. :)

 

Put it this way -- there's three kinds of canon:

 

1) Core Dimension Direct Canon.

 

2) A handful of Alternate Dimensions, still Direct Canon.

 

3) Fanfics as alternate dimensions; indirect canon. :)

 

Now maybe Greg would agree that crossovers are exempted from the "canonically they are alternate dimensions" rule, but he didn't actually say that, so we shouldn't assume it, is the point. ^_^

 

It's pretty obviously a situation that can safely be labeled as "impossible" as far as canonization goes.

Again you seem to be talking about the "direct canon." That's what "canonization" is usually referring to. All fanfics' events are "non-canon" as far as not being specifically approved by LEGO in any ways. But the existence of them is confirmed, under the "infinite" umbrella, technically, and as long as it has something that is recognizeably "Bionicle", it would be connected to a branch off of the Bionicle tree of dimensions. Technically. :)

 

Fanon that anchors itself in the BIONICLE universe qualifies as "possibly canon". Fanon that breaks a bit with established canon qualifies as "possibly canon as an alternate universe". Fanon that involves crossovers are just "not canon".

Just to be clear, fan fiction that anchors itself in the Core Dimension is still "non-canon" in terms of events (and may even be non-canon in existence since Greg did not, to my knowledge, ever give such a blanket nod of approval to this, and two fans' contradictory interpretations taking place at the same place and time couldn't work, so I think Greg would shunt them both off to an alternate dimension, but the fan themselves could see it as Core Dimension). Fan fiction that breaks a bit (contradicting known canon facts) qualifies as "canonically, definitely existing in an alterate dimension somewhere, but isn't specifically endorsed by LEGO". And fanon that involves crossovers should, objectively, be the one classed as possibly canonically existing, possibly not. It's debatable, rather than definitely not canon, so far as we know. But strongly seems implied to be technically canon based on what Greg has said.

 

Also, why did you use "fanon" there? It doesn't matter whether it's just fan fiction (written and put out there but belonging just to the writer) or fanon (collaborations where the parts are free to use by others). It would be better to say fan fiction / fanfics there. Unless you meant something else by "fanon"?

 

BIONICLE fanfics aren't and shouldn't be any more canon than My Immortal would be for Harry Potter.

Title notwithstanding since I have no idea what that is, and assuming it's related to HP, the question would then be if HP has a rule about alternate dimensions like Greg made for Bionicle. Assuming it doesn't, then that isn't a good analogy. (But even then, unless HP specifically forbids alternate futures/timelines from existing at all, we must wonder why it couldn't exist in an alternate HP dimension...)

 

No matter how good the fanfic might be, and there are a lot of really good ones, it's just a terrible idea.

Why? All it's saying is that there are an infinite variety of alternate dimensions, where for every "yes" in one, there's a "no" in the other. That's it. It's not saying LEGO approves of "Daxia Chainsaw Massacre Universe". And if you say there's some kind of magical lockout that prevents the specific events and things from fanfics from being included in those infinite alternates, then we must wonder how exactly that could be accomplished... It sounds like you're missing the point of it.
 

Does that mean pretty much anything could be Bionicle Fanon?

Remember that "fanon" means that a fanfic writer(s) say that their stuff is free to use by others, just as canon things are (so a "canon" run by fans alone). Many fanfic authors wouldn't say that, preferring permission be required, so no. But I presume you didn't mean that... ? Sometimes lately people have begun to use "fanon" to instead refer to other things, like "fan-made canon" -- but I would personally hope that doesn't become common because the word becomes useless if it no longer refers to its original meaning. :P Fan-made canon is canon, not fanon. If you meant something else, please clarify. :)

 

So, I have a rather dumb question: Do fan comics technically count as fanfics? So could, say, Spoofquest be considered as a possible alt. universe?

Well, "technically yes to everything" would include that, yeah? But like romance, excessive violence, or crossovers, it would never have a chance of being directly given a nod of approval by LEGO, and possibly might later get clarified as a "no". For now, as long as you include "possible" and the like, then yes. :)


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#27 Offline MataNuiFilms

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Posted Jan 03 2014 - 12:48 AM

So a fanfic can be counted as an alternate reality since theoretically there are an infinite number of alternate dimensions, each with a slight or major difference. But on the other hand only alternate realities that have been approved by Greg can count as a Canon alternate reality, while the unapproved fanfic is still an different reality but not officially recognized by Greg.


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#28 Offline Katuko

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Posted Jan 03 2014 - 08:15 AM

It's just arguing semantics over the exact words used, bones. For legal reasons no other fictional universe can cross over with BIONICLE and be canon. As such, alternate dimensions can be invented with all kinds of things, but if they break copyright they are impossible to make canon, period. Whether we call what remains fan fiction or alternate reality writing, it's still plain and simple "not canon". What Greg has said opens the potential for fan fiction to be "potentially canon" in a way, but as you say: it's not actually canon unless LEGO explicitly raises it to that status..

Some fan-written stories have become canon via writing contests, and Greg has canonized certain "fanon" things based on PMs from fans. As such, we can say that fan-fiction which stays as close to canon as possible has the potential for being made canon because it does not break with canon. Anything else is fan-fiction that can not become canon. That is what the topic asks as well: "Does it mean every fanfic is canon [because of alternate dimensions/realities/timelines being canon]?" That is what I am answering, and the answer is no.

I get what you saying with the "alternate Olmak might allow it" stuff, but it's just an excuse, just like "it's not possible" is a necessary excuse to counter it from a legal standpoint. It should be common sense that the BIONICLE universe - by its very nature as a fictional universe - must abide by certain fictional universe laws, and the most major one in this case is "alternate dimensions of the BIONICLE universe do not - ever - involve other fictional universes". It might be an arbitrary rule, perhaps, but for the sake of actually keeping BIONICLE as its own moniker it's one of the few rules that must be in place. It might not "make sense" from an in-universe point of view, but at the same time we are talking about canon here. That is already a meta discussion, and we can only use meta knowledge to talk about what may or may not exist in the BIONICLE multiverse. Meta knowledge and meta rules tells us that only certain things may be canon at all.

There is no "technical yes to anything" because canon can not allow itself to work that way. Fan fiction is just that - fan fiction. As good or bad as it is, I see no problem with labeling it as such.


For the record, to me "fanon" has always meant "things that fans consider as good as canon despite it never being confirmed as such". That is the meaning I have seen used on the net as well. I used it here because "fanon" indicates a stronger bond between the idea in question and the fan base at large, as opposed to (for example) a one-off short story about an original character.

Title notwithstanding since I have no idea what that is, and assuming it's related to HP, the question would then be if HP has a rule about alternate dimensions like Greg made for Bionicle. Assuming it doesn't, then that isn't a good analogy. (But even then, unless HP specifically forbids alternate futures/timelines from existing at all, we must wonder why it couldn't exist in an alternate HP dimension...)

My Immortal is an infamously bad piece of fan fiction, spanning many chapters with consistently terrible grammar and complete destruction of any and all canon events to fit the writer's super-perfect goth-stereotype self-insert character. It's so bad that many theorize that it has to have been written as a parody of bad fan fiction, or as a deliberate attempt to rile people up.

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#29 Offline bonesiii

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Posted Jan 03 2014 - 09:00 AM

For legal reasons no other fictional universe can cross over with BIONICLE and be canon.

There are also legal reasons that Bionicle fanfics can't be read, unless created specifically for a canonization contest. :)
 
It's more than semantics -- it's logic, running from the canon fact that there are alternate timelines for every yes-no question. It's unavoidable -- we might not like a huge percentage of the options that can come out of that, but the logic does demand it, technically.
 
 

As such, alternate dimensions can be invented with all kinds of things, but if they break copyright they are impossible to make canon, period

This is where you're getting into semantics. Nobody is arguing for crossovers to be "made canon" like Greg would canonize the Skakdi character Nektann or that Agori have metallic bones, or fan-made stories submitted to a canonization contest. That isn't what the topic is asking. The alternate dimensions that happen to, in this world, violate copyrights, would still logically exist within the fictional realm, due to infinite possibilities. LEGO just could never use them. BTW, this is true under many different franchises, such as for example Stargate which uses the alternate timelines theory. It's not just a Bionicle thing, it's an AT theory thing which Bionicle happens to use and happens to affirm in its "proper" form.
 
Some other franchises like LOST are more ambiguous (for its "Whatever happened happened" and the revelation of what the apparent flash-sideways really was... yet Desmond does seem to have the ability to cause alternate realities as the exception to the rules). Others may explicitly state that there's only one timeline. In those, crossovers presumably "can't happen", canonically. But since Bionicle says that "canonically, there is an infinite variety of alternate dimensions, and fanfics are included in that", then canonically it does seem that crossovers are technically unavoidable. Make sense? :)
 
As for what the topic starter asked, it was:
 

doesn't that technically mean that writings like fanfics in which alternate realities change what happened in the main canon universe count as alternate realities and therefore are canon as a different dimensions?

Emphasis mine. The answer to this is yes. It sounds like you kinda don't like that answer, and/or you just wanna make sure it isn't confused for normal canonization, which is fine, but none of us can change what Greg said is true canonically. :)

 

 

Some fan-written stories have become canon via writing contests

Again, we are not talking about this kind of canon. Only indirect canon -- that it's canon that Greg said "there are infinite alternate timelines" and "fanfics count as those." It's really not that complicated. :P

 

 

and the most major one in this case is "alternate dimensions of the BIONICLE universe do not - ever - involve other fictional universes".

Right, but this simply means that all the ones with crossovers have to branch off of a more "common denominator" root that is not considered the Core Dimension. Put simply, at the "root of time", there is one timeline where the question "Core Dimension Tree?" is answered "yes" -- everything branching off of that is what you are referring to, and has no crossovers -- and also one in which that question is answered "No" -- crossovers would come off this. Also, it does seem unavoidable though that some kinds of crossovers should happen under the infinite alterations even under the Core Tree. :shrugs:

 

Please note that as far as I know, what you're referring to there is to "direct canon" alternates anyways, so it may be irrelevant. If it is meant as an absolute rule, then it is a contradiction with the statement that there are infinite alternates. Capische?

 

For the record, to me "fanon" has always meant "things that fans consider as good as canon despite it never being confirmed as such".

I see. Interesting take, but that's yet a third definition of it, so IMO if people are going to have such radically different meanings of the word, and use them without defining them each time, it becomes rather useless. :P On BZPower it was widely agreed that the meaning we used in the EM is the main meaning; a "canon" of fan fiction controlled by groups of fans, unrelated to official franchise canon. Anywho.

 

FTR, here's def. #1 from Urban Dictionary:

 

a term used in fanfiction to describe commonly accepted ideas among authors even if they are not actually expressed in the canon work.

That would work for either definition. So I guess no further objections your honor. :P As long as it doesn't mean "fan-suggested directly approved canon", IMO.

 

My Immortal is an infamously bad piece of fan fiction, spanning many chapters with consistently terrible grammar and complete destruction of any and all canon events to fit the writer's super-perfect goth-stereotype self-insert character. It's so bad that many theorize that it has to have been written as a parody of bad fan fiction, or as a deliberate attempt to rile people up.

Well, this brings up the question of whether writing quality affects plausibility of an alternate scenario existing among the infinite variety. I think you could make a case if something appears to be impossible within that very scenario, then maybe it's out. But if it's just mispellings and the like, hard to see how that matters since it's more an attempt to describe a scenario and the attempt has errors in quality of description rather than plausibility. I dunno. I'd have to read it, and if it's that bad, not sure I want to lol. Even under the "impossible scenario" theory, though, you can make a case that anything might go, technically, if some unseen background mechanism the author doesn't mention is at work. :shrugs:


Edited by bonesiii, Jan 03 2014 - 09:20 AM.

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#30 Offline Katuko

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Posted Jan 03 2014 - 09:51 AM

This is where you're getting into semantics. Nobody is arguing for crossovers to be "made canon" like Greg would canonize the Skakdi character Nektann or that Agori have metallic bones, or fan-made stories submitted to a canonization contest. That isn't what the topic is asking. The alternate dimensions that happen to, in this world, violate copyrights, would still logically exist within the fictional realm, due to infinite possibilities. LEGO just could never use them. BTW, this is true under many different franchises, such as for example Stargate which uses the alternate timelines theory. It's not just a Bionicle thing, it's an AT theory thing which Bionicle happens to use and happens to affirm in its "proper" form.

Logic tells us, though, that if the rule of canon - however meta it is - states that certain possibilities are not possible (such as Optimus Prime suddenly showing up through a dimensional portal), then the term "infinite" is not correct when describing the number of alternate universes; or it is "infinite", but only because any action can have a near-infinite number of outcomes even without brining in crossovers. For example, there are probably hundreds of ways that I can fall down a staircase - I can fall and die, I can fall and hurt my shin, I can fall and hurt my back, I can fall and manage to grab the railing, I can fall and do a perfect landing, I can be saved by someone who grabs me, etc. If each of these outcomes results in a new alternate universe, then the number of alts shoots up to infinity pretty quickly. And in none of these alternate realities do I need to be saved by Optimus Prime. It's just not possible in this theoretical universe, because Optimus Prime does not exist there and no one has the idea to build him.

So I believe that "infinite alternatives" does not need to mean that every alternative is free to go within the boundaries of the BIONICLE universe.
 

As for what the topic starter asked, it was:
 

doesn't that technically mean that writings like fanfics in which alternate realities change what happened in the main canon universe count as alternate realities and therefore are canon as a different dimensions?

Emphasis mine. The answer to this is yes. It sounds like you kinda don't like that answer, and/or you just wanna make sure it isn't confused for normal canonization, which is fine, but none of us can change what Greg said is true canonically. :)


I am indeed afraid that it could be taken by some to mean that anything that is ever written should be considered a potential part of BIONICLE simply because we have seen a few split timeline alternatives. :)
 

For the record, to me "fanon" has always meant "things that fans consider as good as canon despite it never being confirmed as such".

I see. Interesting take, but that's yet a third definition of it, so IMO if people are going to have such radically different meanings of the word, and use them without defining them each time, it becomes rather useless. :P On BZPower it was widely agreed that the meaning we used in the EM is the main meaning; a "canon" of fan fiction controlled by groups of fans, unrelated to official franchise canon. Anywho.


In the case of the Expanded Multiverse, it is not "fanon" as far as BIONICLE goes. It is fan fiction compared to BIONICLE, but compared to itself it is canon. Anything you decide happens in the EM is EM canon, but not necessarily BIONICLE fanon. A fan-suggested idea may be called fanon if most fans prefer the idea to be true -- if it becomes official, then it is no longer fanon, but canon. And yeah, I guess this is semantics too. :P
 

My Immortal is an infamously bad piece of fan fiction, spanning many chapters with consistently terrible grammar and complete destruction of any and all canon events to fit the writer's super-perfect goth-stereotype self-insert character. It's so bad that many theorize that it has to have been written as a parody of bad fan fiction, or as a deliberate attempt to rile people up.

Well, this brings up the question of whether writing quality affects plausibility of an alternate scenario existing among the infinite variety. I think you could make a case if something appears to be impossible within that very scenario, then maybe it's out. But if it's just mispellings and the like, hard to see how that matters since it's more an attempt to describe a scenario and the attempt has errors in quality of description rather than plausibility. I dunno. I'd have to read it, and if it's that bad, not sure I want to lol. Even under the "impossible scenario" theory, though, you can make a case that anything might go, technically, if some unseen background mechanism the author doesn't mention is at work. :shrugs:

In the case of My Immortal, it re-tells the story from the beginning, then majorly changes it. The author's own self-insert character overshadows every other character, and the writing style gives the impression of self-glorification and outright denial of many things that happened in official Harry Potter canon. Any criticism about the writing was met with complete ignorance ("glad you like it") or a paragraph filled with (badly spelled) bile. One reviewer described the fanfic as "a machine that fires bricks at your head", in that the stupidity behind it all hit you like a brick, and left you just dazed enough that you would click the "next chapter" link and get hit again.

A BIONICLE equivalent would be this: Imagine re-telling the entire BIONICLE story with a new, independent main character; who not only is involved with plot events he/she has no business being involved in, but also takes all the spotlight and saves the world in place of the Toa. Imagine rewriting Gali to be a petty shrew simply because you don't like her original characterization, and to kill of Lewa permanently in the intro chapter for the same reason. Then you write your character as being romantically involved with Kopaka, have him/her use the Vahi instead of Tahu because Tahu obviously can't handle it, and have them kill Makuta with a machine gun in chapter 3. Then suddenly Hewkii turns out to be the real Makuta, because you are writing this in 2006 and LEGO just turned him into a Toa... which you don't like, so your fanfic now kills him off in protest, preferably in a stupid and humiliating way.

And throughout this entire fanfic, you consistently misspell just about every word, so that "Takoo" turns into the "Tao of Lait" because "he's frend Jalla was dedded by the rahkasi and Takoo was total sad about that".

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#31 Offline bonesiii

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Posted Jan 03 2014 - 01:00 PM

Logic tells us, though, that if the rule of canon - however meta it is - states that certain possibilities are not possible... Optimus Prime does not exist there and no one has the idea to build him...

Ah, but for every universe where nobody comes up with the idea, technically there should be at least one in which somebody does. :)

 

So I believe that "infinite alternatives" does not need to mean that every alternative is free to go within the boundaries of the BIONICLE universe.

"Universe" by definition isn't what we're talking about, as "uni" means "one" and refers just to one dimension, one continuity. "Multiverse" or "tree of universes" or such things would be clearer terms. :)

 

I am indeed afraid that it could be taken by some to mean that anything that is ever written should be considered a potential part of BIONICLE simply because we have seen a few split timeline alternatives. :)

Again we must wonder about 'semantics' with that wording too, though. I don't know how more clearly to say it than that none of them are "direct canon" of the sort that the Hapka and Farshtey books are, the Bionicle comics, etc. Period -- none. (Other than things Greg has specifically canonized, of course.) But all may be "potential" part of "the same highest-level existence as Bionicle, fictionally".

 

Incidentally, even the most canon-fitting fanfic will tend to have names in it that can't be approved by legal so have similar issues as a crossover. Yet, we would all agree that Greg saying "fanfics are alternate dimensions" means that if the only thing different is there's a character named Toa Bombadil (and the choice of name is meant purely as coincidence, especially if the writer has never heard of Tom Bombadil and didn't think to google it to make sure it wasn't "taken"; I mean this only as an example of any random name that is taken somewhere), then it's still considered "potentially existing" in the infinite variety. Since nothing about those letters in that arrangement, or the character of the Toa, is remotely implausible in a Bionicle dimension. Well, with crossovers, it's really the same principle, just taken to its logical conclusion. :)

 

 

 

A BIONICLE equivalent would be this: Imagine re-telling the entire BIONICLE story with a new, independent main character; who not only is involved with plot events he/she has no business being involved in, but also takes all the spotlight and saves the world in place of the Toa. Imagine rewriting Gali to be a petty shrew simply because you don't like her original characterization

Well, it brings up interesting questions, although we're getting maybe a taaad off-topic now. :P But if it's logically valid in-story to have a universe where "Makuta Teridax" is a good guy, then maybe "Gali" as petty is possible too. The bad fanfic author's motives for writing her that way are technically irrelevant to the potential for such a version of Gali to exist. And we could always just say that "this author is just missing why this Gali got that way". Not that we'd want to, just for sake of analysis, seems undeniable that the existence of a petty Gali could be possible.

 

And someone else could possibly write a fanfic that's quality and enjoyable that would use the same idea, but do it well. Similarly, "Pirates of the Caribbean Meets Toa Mahri!!!1" might not be enjoyable (much lol), but a story about a mysterious hole in the fabric of existence that leads a human to end up in a Bionicle world (read a fanfic like that once, heh), could be greatly enjoyable and feel (and logically even be) totally plausible. See, here's the thing, if you make a blanket rule to ban consideration of the one, you ban the other too. Since Greg can't read one or the other and say "this one's quality, so it's in, this one isn't" (and that might come across as kind of off-putting to some very young fans for example), instead he just gave a blanket explanation of them all. :) IMO it seems the best solution. And until we're given clarification that some are out even though logically they're possible, we shouldn't assume they're out. 'Swhat I'm sayin'.


Edited by bonesiii, Jan 03 2014 - 01:04 PM.

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#32 Offline Katuko

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Posted Jan 03 2014 - 01:38 PM

And someone else could possibly write a fanfic that's quality and enjoyable that would use the same idea, but do it well.

Indeed! I believe I mentioned something similar in the Red Star discussion we had recently: Any given plot element is not necessarily bad on its own, but the execution of the idea in writing can be hilariously terrible.

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#33 Offline ElevenGuy

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Posted Jan 18 2014 - 11:21 PM

Technically speaking, an "alternate universe" or "alternate timeline" is created every time a decision is made. Every time a character makes a decision, a new alternate universe is "created" in which a character chooses to make the opposite decision. The law of duality states that if "a given statement is valid for all partially ordered sets, then its dual statement, obtained by inverting the direction of all order relations and by dualizing all order theoretic definitions involved, is also valid for all partially ordered sets" (quoted from wikipedia.).

Meaning, in short, that if something exists, the opposite of that thing also exists.

However, these "alternate universes" are called "alternate" for a reason. Things never happened that way in the first place. It's difficult to explain, but think of the Bionicle universe we know and love as the "real" or "main" universe. Because without decisions being made in *that* universe, the alternate universe(s) wouldn't exist in the first place. I'm pretty bad at explaining things though. If you follow what I mean, awesome, but if not, it probably all just sounds like nonsense.

 

That all being said, one can only assume that more alternate universes can be created by the decisions made in other alternate universes and so on, creating an infinite number of possibile realities. This may even cause overlapping realities (as explained in that BZP multiverse guide thing, is that still going on?).

 

(The keyword here is "possible". POSSIBLE realities.)

 

Now that we know what an alternate reality is, we know that the answer to the original question is "no".

Why? Because the theory of alternate realities is based on choice, not random circumstance. Can a human from our Earth make his way to the shores of Mata Nui? I seriously doubt it, because no decision a matoran could make would allow that. Brutaka cannot open a gate to a universe where Vakama fights the Hulk on a giant popsicle in outer space because neither the Hulk, popsicles, or their opposites exist within the Bionicle universe, and probably not in any alternate universe that could be created either. It's like why a child cannot bring their imaginary friend into the physical world for his parents to see and touch. It simply CANNOT happen by the scientific laws in place within that universe.

 

This is all just out of my head, though, there are bound to be some flaws within my explanation. Feel free to point them out :P


Edited by ElevenGuy, Jan 18 2014 - 11:24 PM.

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#34 Offline bonesiii

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Posted Jan 19 2014 - 03:57 AM

This is all just out of my head, though, there are bound to be some flaws within my explanation. Feel free to point them out :P

 

Since you "asked for it" (:P) I might as well summarize the correct answer. For the fuller explanation, please read the other posts in this topic.

 

Now that we know what an alternate reality is, we know that the answer to the original question is "no".

Incorrect; the original question of this topic asked if:

 

fanfics in which alternate realities change what happened in the main canon universe count as alternate realities and therefore are canon as a different dimensions?

Note that human crossovers or the like aren't included in the original question. We do know for sure that Greg considers all "other choices" that could branch off the Core Dimension to be "canon as different dimensions". Again, he specifically confirmed this for fanfics.

 

Later in this topic the question of crossovers came up. Here's where your answer went "wrong" (apparently; technically, etc.):

 

Meaning, in short, that if something exists, the opposite of that thing also exists.... [but] the theory of alternate realities is based on choice, not random circumstance. Can a human from our Earth make his way to the shores of Mata Nui? I seriously doubt it, because no decision a matoran could make would allow that... It simply CANNOT happen by the scientific laws in place within that universe.

It is true that Greg has only directly confirmed "fanfics" and "choices". But logically we can extrapolate to the most likely answer (for what is "considered true canonically") that it is not only choices that have alternate dimensions.

 

The real-life alternate dimension theory includes two variations, the choice-fork only version, and the "absolutely everything has opposites" version. (Also, when one thing can have a spectrum of variation rather than binary opposites, that every point along that spectrum has a dimension too.) The second encompasses the first, so they're not mutually exclusive. It generally relies on the uncertainty principle in quantum mechanics to suppose that all potential existence states for any given particle/wave exist in different universes.

 

And when you consider that we make choices because of the particle/energy physics of our minds, the first seems to imply the possibility of the second. Greg's blanket confirmation of fanfics would seem to as well; consider that many fanfics may try to fit with the canon entirely, but change the physics alone (other than different characters and events and suchnot, but I mean, without featuring crossovers). It seems unlikely Greg meant to say "only fanfics that use the official LEGO version of Bionicle physics are considered valid alternate dimensions." Given the sometimes arbitrary nature of Bionicle physics, and how non-seriously it is taken. It's by no means an unbreakable rule.

 

So, if the physics can be different, this opens up the logical possibility that at the beginning of time, there's a physics fork, where the entire branch of universes off the Core Dimension answers the question "can there be crossovers?" as "absolutely not"... but there's a whole range of alternates to this, where the answer is "yes." :) Technically this would mean there's a whole copy of the entire Core Dimension and all its branches, and copy of the other franchise universe tree (the original also having no crossovers), with the only difference being that these branches all have crossovers at various points and in various ways.

 

Now Greg might want to add a restriction to the fanfic rule to say "we don't consider that possible canonically", but it's hard to see why he would. It would just annoy fans who like to think their Toa versus Darth Vader fanfic "could happen". :P (And keep in mind NONE of them are "canon in the way the Core Dimension or LEGO-produces alternates are", and legal issues are not a problem, as even the most ordinary Bionicle fanfics will have names that LEGO likewise cannot use due to legal reasons.)

 

That all being said, one can only assume that more alternate universes can be created by the decisions made in other alternate universes and so on, creating an infinite number of possibile realities. This may even cause overlapping realities (as explained in that BZP multiverse guide thing, is that still going on?).

 

Yes, the Expanded Multiverse is still going on, just taking a break from the Cipher Chronicles and current contest, as (just about) everything that needs to happen next needs me to do it, and I'm very busy focusing entirely on my retelling of Bionicle right now (but nearing completion, and the EM is the first big project I plan to focus on next).


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#35 Offline ElevenGuy

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Posted Jan 19 2014 - 11:36 AM

Ah, I understand. Thanks for clearing that up c:
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#36 Offline SarracenianKaijin

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Posted Apr 15 2014 - 07:09 AM

No.

 

It just means that there is no real canon.

 

Everything is real for all are stories. All is truth and half-truth.

 

Reject this arbitrary notion of material rules and focus on the nature of your stories.


Edited by SarracenianKaijin, Apr 15 2014 - 07:10 AM.

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#37 Offline bonesiii

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Posted Apr 15 2014 - 07:27 AM

Actually, Sar, material rules are one thing which enables stories to NOT be arbitrary, by definition. :) I would say, reject the false dichotomy that pits those things against each other. Take reality -- if I take advantage of the rules of physics to make a working machine, to deny that it happened is just... well, denial. Such a denial has no power to make it not have happened. So, since such things exist in reality, they can exist in fiction. In neither case does it change that this happened for deeper reasons; a person had a desire to express their ingenuity, imagination, ambition; to be creative, successful, etc.


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#38 Offline SarracenianKaijin

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Posted Apr 15 2014 - 07:39 AM

Actually, Sar, material rules are one thing which enables stories to NOT be arbitrary, by definition. :) I would say, reject the false dichotomy that pits those things against each other. Take reality -- if I take advantage of the rules of physics to make a working machine, to deny that it happened is just... well, denial. Such a denial has no power to make it not have happened. So, since such things exist in reality, they can exist in fiction. In neither case does it change that this happened for deeper reasons; a person had a desire to express their ingenuity, imagination, ambition; to be creative, successful, etc.

... I'm not sure you are really understanding what I meant by "arbitrary notion of material rules".


Edited by SarracenianKaijin, Apr 15 2014 - 07:39 AM.

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#39 Offline bonesiii

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Posted Apr 15 2014 - 07:50 AM

Well, that's what happens when someone decides to avoid plain English -- inability to communicate clearly. :P (I probably do understand it, though -- but not agree, not completely anyways.)

 

Anyways, please stay on-topic; if you aren't going to clarify what you meant to move the discussion forward, best not to post.


Edited by bonesiii, Apr 15 2014 - 08:49 AM.

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#40 Offline Mr. Lightning Bolt

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Posted Apr 15 2014 - 08:41 AM

Headcanon should only mean anything to the canon of the people who like it. For instance, I ignore Greg's rule that reproduction is impossible for the inhabitants of the Matoran Universe. That is my headcanon. Alternate realities in fiction mean very little as every fanfic and headcanon can claim AR.
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