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Ridiculous number of catagory tags

Keet
Updated:

Some stories seem to have a ridiculous amount of tags. Today I noticed a story with 93(!) tags. I understand that an author needs to set tags concerning the contents of a story but an overabundance of tags totally ruins the category search system. A system that should lead you to stories with specific categories that you are interested in. With so many tags the same stories always show up simply because it has almost all available tags. You would almost start thinking that some authors add as many tags as possible to always show up in the category search results.

I think that a maximum of 5-10 tags should cover the main type of contents without the risk of missing essential warnings. This would make the category search system way more valuable.

What are your thoughts about this?

Switch Blayde

@Keet

What are your thoughts about this?


Just because someone gets a blowjob in a story doesn't mean the "oral" tag should be included. But if the author thinks the oral sex has significance, then it does. It's subjective.

Replies:   Keet
Vlad_Inhaler

@Keet

Our glorious webmaster was going to impose an upper limit, not sure what happened there.
That particular author has a history of tag inflation. Personally, I avoid any story like that and would be happy to have "too many tags" (with a number) as a story exception criteria.
@Laz: don't bother implementing it.

Keet

@Switch Blayde

I agree is subjective. My main point is that too many tags devalue that what the tags are for (I think): identify the main type of content and warning flags for specific categories.

awnlee jawking

@Vlad_Inhaler

Our glorious webmaster was going to impose an upper limit, not sure what happened there.


I believe the new limit of 50 has now been implemented, but there's no sensible way to enforce it retrospectively.

AJ

Keet

@Vlad_Inhaler

tag inflation

I like that because it is exactly what is seems to me. Beyond the main type of content and warnings additional tags do not add anything.
And I agree that Laz should not bother implementing it, it should be the responsibility of the author to set meaningful tags.

richardshagrin

Some of the time authors should say: all tags but vampires and zombies. Or No Farming and small breasts. Simpler to read what they don't have.

Vlad_Inhaler
Updated:

Look at the "Site Announcements" here in the Forum. https://storiesonline.net/d/s1/t1542/site-change-limit-on-the-number-of-tags-a-story-can-have originally posted October 2016. The limit is still 50 though.

Replies:   Keet
doctor_wing_nut

As a general rule I avoid stories with WS, Scat, Snuff and M/M m/m tags, but when I see a laundry list of tags I don't even consider it, even if the aforementioned tags are missing. I just figure 'this story is a hot mess, it's all over the place, and the author has lost control, he/she's just throwing shit at the wall and hoping it comes up ART'.

I don't believe there are very many authors here that can handle ALL those elements effectively, and weave them into an interesting story. Just my two cents.

Replies:   REP  Keet  Crumbly Writer
REP

@doctor_wing_nut

I agree.

Keet

@Vlad_Inhaler

Look at the "Site Announcements" here in the Forum. https://storiesonline.net/d/s1/t1542/site-change-limit-on-the-number-of-tags-a-story-can-have originally posted October 2016. The limit is still 50 though.

Interesting read. I had no idea this was discussed before and it seems most agree how I feel the category tags should be used. Some good suggestions like combining tags in natural groups but that is a nightmare to code considering the present history of existing tags. And I should know, that type of problems is what I have to solve with my own software system for each client individually because there is no general way to solve it. An interesting challenge if the time was available though.

Keet

@doctor_wing_nut

Exactly. And it ruins the effectiveness of the category search.

Ernest Bywater
Updated:

@awnlee jawking


I believe the new limit of 50 has now been implemented, but there's no sensible way to enforce it retrospectively.


Lazeez hasn't the time to go through and check everything, but when the author accesses the story stats on the page where they can make changes they get a notice if there are more than 50 tags and they are asked to amend them. If you report it violators to Lazeez he'll probably message the author about changing it, and later take action if they don't.

edit to add: I know about this because it happened with one of my older stories Power Tool - when you have a 268,000 word story with a lot of sex scenes the codes can grow on you very quickly.

Replies:   StarFleet Carl
Dominions Son

@Keet

What are your thoughts about this?


I don't see a hard limit as being at all useful.

A lot depends on the size of the story. A longer story can support more tags without becoming incoherent.

You also have to look at the tags in groups.

I would see more than 1 or 2 consent level tags is generally problematic except in a very long story (multi novel length serial).

Another issue for me is multiple story type/genre tags.

Genre crossovers can be done, and done well, but in my personal experience, they fail more often than the work. And the more genre's involved the harder it gets to make it work.

And certain genre combos can be particularly hard to pull off while other combos are particularly easy.

For example, in my opinion, it's particularly hard to make science fiction and paranormal work in the same story.

On the other hand, romance can work in any setting, so a romance/anything will generally be relatively easy.

All that said, there are only a 186 tags in total, so 93 means the author used half of all the available tags, and that will be too much for any story.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
docholladay

With to many taqs I get the impression the writer is writing scenes to include the taqs rather than to tell a story. I might be wrong however, but I do tend to skip those stories.

Dominions Son

@docholladay

I get the impression the writer is writing scenes to include the taqs rather than to tell a story.


I get the impression that they have no idea what the tags are for and/or what they mean and are just including tags to include tags.

Replies:   docholladay
StarFleet Carl

@Ernest Bywater

when you have a 268,000 word story with a lot of sex scenes the codes can grow on you very quickly.


Yep. My Legacy of a Legend at 435,000 words has 25 codes and maybe could have another half a dozen if you wanted to get technical about some of the things in it.

And if you're over in the Author's Forum, you'll see that Laz has added another couple for us to play with, too.

Replies:   docholladay
docholladay

@Dominions Son

I get the impression that they have no idea what the tags are for and/or what they mean and are just including tags to include tags.


Either way it indicates a very poor story. So one to be skipped.

docholladay
Updated:

@StarFleet Carl


Yep. My Legacy of a Legend at 435,000 words has 25 codes and maybe could have another half a dozen if you wanted to get technical about some of the things in it.


Well I have noticed how some writers will go back and add codes when either their readers suggest it or Laz adds new codes that fit their stories.

edited to add: opps make that adjust story codes or tags.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Ernest Bywater

The other day I saw a story on the home page where the list of tags was three times longer than the story blurb, and from the size of the story it probably had more words in the tags than in the story.

Crumbly Writer

@Vlad_Inhaler

Our glorious webmaster was going to impose an upper limit, not sure what happened there.
That particular author has a history of tag inflation. Personally, I avoid any story like that and would be happy to have "too many tags" (with a number) as a story exception criteria.

I think it should be subjective. Whenever we notice that sort of abuse, we let Lazeez know, and then he can place ALL the tags with a single "tagfag" tag, to let the author (and readers) know that we're onto him (no offense to the traditional fags intended (i.e. British cigarettes)).

Boy, I can see that quote popping up if I ever decide to run for office!

Replies:   sejintenej
Crumbly Writer

@awnlee jawking

I believe the new limit of 50 has now been implemented, but there's no sensible way to enforce it retrospectively.

I think that, if you go over 30 and you have fewer than 80 chapters, then you're motorboating tags. Rather than listing every single sexual tag, just list "much sex" or "stroke" and readers get the point.

Personally, I think a few select authors see it as a personal challenge, trying to cross each tag off in the list as quickly as possible, just because they can't think of how to move the story forward with plot, characters or conflict.

Crumbly Writer

@doctor_wing_nut

I don't believe there are very many authors here that can handle ALL those elements effectively, and weave them into an interesting story. Just my two cents.

What's more, than that can won't time listing every damn tag. Relying on tags that extensively is more crutch than assistance.

Crumbly Writer

@Dominions Son

For example, in my opinion, it's particularly hard to make science fiction and paranormal work in the same story.

Hey! I resemble that comment.

Replies:   robberhands
Crumbly Writer

@docholladay

With to many taqs

Sorry, but "with too many tags …"

Crumbly Writer

@docholladay

Well I have noticed how some writers will go back and add codes when either their readers suggest it or Laz adds new codes that fit their stories.

I don't think I've ever added a tag to an older story, probably because most newer tags don't particularly apply to my stories, but I have requested tags when a story needs it (like "fairies" and "dragons" rather than using the misleading "fairy tale" tag for a sci-fi story).

robberhands

@Crumbly Writer

Hey! I resemble that comment.

I can't even imagine how you have to look like resembling a comment.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Crumbly Writer

@Ernest Bywater

The other day I saw a story on the home page where the list of tags was three times longer than the story blurb, and from the size of the story it probably had more words in the tags than in the story.

What's worse, the author probably used more time coming up with the tags than he did in constructing the story!

Authors need to think of their story description as their 'elevator speech', or how you'd sell a concept during an short elevator ride with someone influential (like a reader). If your description isn't both short and powerful, you're story is never going to fly. And when the tags declare that nothing the author does is either short nor powerful, there's little reason to bother with the story.

Crumbly Writer

@robberhands

I can't even imagine how you have to look like resembling a comment.

Many of my stories feature paranormal sci-fi, though most often the simpler ones, like telepathy, telekenesis, etc.

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands

@Crumbly Writer

Many of my stories feature paranormal sci-fi, though most often the simpler ones, like telepathy, telekenesis, etc.

In that case, I'd understand you resented DS' comment, but why would you resemble it?

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Crumbly Writer
Updated:

@robberhands


In that case, I'd understand you resented DS' comment, but why would you resemble it?


It's a TV Trope (aka: "I resemble that remark"). I was making fun of the fact that his criticism of the use is essentially my bread and butter as an author.

And I didn't 'resent' his comment, I was just having fun with it. I enjoy tweaking the two genres and get them to work, so I don't take offense when others find it difficult.

robberhands

@Crumbly Writer

Ah! Thanks, I've never heard that phrase before.

sunkuwan

nothing is more infuriating in a story than including a tag just because there is one scene within it.

Let's say you see a 500k word story and your kink is BDSM for example.
You see the story and think "WOAH! an epic-length story with bdsm!
And in the end, it was just one scene in the last third of the story.

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands

@sunkuwan

... nothing is more infuriating in a story than including a tag just because there is one scene within it.

I agree, when you look at tags as an advertisement of story content. But the tags are also a warning and the one gay scene in the last third of the story will get many readers very upset and rightfully so if it has not been coded.

sunkuwan

@robberhands

just do a warning in the introduction of the story. Like something "it is just one scene for plot reasons, I will mark it in the chapter"
Someone who likes gay content would feel falsely advertised if it is just one scene in a big story.
Also, someone could skip over a romantic consensual story that has the rape tag included. The author may have either included it because he always includes everything that happens in a story, or he had it included because he wanted to warn his readers.
But I think more people would skip over a romantic consensual story that also includes the rape tag, than readers who are outraged because there was one rape scene in it. Same with a story including gay.
Just do a warning either in the introduction or the particular chapter.

Not_a_ID

@robberhands

I agree, when you look at tags as an advertisement of story content. But the tags are also a warning and the one gay scene in the last third of the story will get many readers very upset and rightfully so if it has not been coded.


Which cycles back to the as "hotcodes"/squicks vs tags as advertising. Most of the newer tags are "advertising" while many of the initial tags were warnings.

One has a threshold of any content. The other is much more subjective.

robberhands

@sunkuwan

That's much easier said than done. It could mean a very lengthy introduction and a warning at the chapter in question is too late to warn your readers. You may search for BDSM content but for others it's a squick and that's the same for many of the tags.

Personelly, I only use basic genre tags and the sexual tags to warn of squick worthy content in my stories.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Dominions Son

@Crumbly Writer

I think that, if you go over 30 and you have fewer than 80 chapters, then you're motorboating tags.


Sure, if they are small chapters. Some authors write larger chapters.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Dominions Son
Updated:

@Crumbly Writer


I was making fun of the fact that his criticism of the use is essentially my bread and butter as an author.


I will say at this point, that you are one of the few authors who does science fiction/paranormal cross-overs well.

And it's not that I personally find it hard to do as an author. As a reader, in my opinion, most of the attempts at it that I have read fail badly.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Capt. Zapp

@Crumbly Writer

Rather than listing every single sexual tag, just list "much sex" or "stroke" and readers get the point.


I agree. Also if using more than a few tags under a category (IE the incest tags) instead of selecting each individual tag, just use the general category tag instead of all the individual tags, even if some of the specific tags don't apply.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Crumbly Writer

@robberhands

I agree, when you look at tags as an advertisement of story content. But the tags are also a warning and the one gay scene in the last third of the story will get many readers very upset and rightfully so if it has not been coded.

In that case, I'd prefer a warning at the start of the chapter, rather than a tag labeling the entire story to be gay centered. That way, readers can simply 'skip over' the part they'd object to (and then, of course, they write to the author to complain that the story 'no longer makes any sense').

Crumbly Writer

@sunkuwan

But I think more people would skip over a romantic consensual story that also includes the rape tag, than readers who are outraged because there was one rape scene in it. Same with a story including gay.

Sorry, but while we agree on your other point, I have to object to this one, as many romance stories start with someone having been raped in the past, thus it's a central component of the story, even if the story isn't 'about' the particularly scene at all.

I think that readers can understand this co-dependent relationship between the tags, as long as it's partially explained in the story description (ex: "After an attack, Susan thought she's never again trust love, but ...").

As for the other tag discussion, maybe we need a new tag, beyond the normal "gay" or "MM" tag of "homophobe", which labels ANY story where one man might desire another, whether they act on it or not. And while we're at it, how about a "Racist" tag, to label ANY story that features blacks having the same rights as 'normal' people.

Coding for squicks gets problematic fast, as you're no longer actually coding the story, but coding for things that really don't matter to the story at all.

Crumbly Writer

@robberhands

Personelly, I only use basic genre tags and the sexual tags to warn of squick worthy content in my stories.

So if I have a character in story who frequently works out, I should label the entire story 'small breast' because someone who loves HHH-bra sizes might be 'offended' by someone who isn't likely to topple over at any moment, even if it has no relation to any specific sex act?

Replies:   robberhands
Crumbly Writer

@Dominions Son

Sure, if they are small chapters. Some authors write larger chapters.

I used to write 14,000 word chapters, and I've NEVER gone over a dozen (I'd have to check each specific story to be sure, though). Personally, I don't think story length has anything to do with the overall number of tags, as many epics don't fall into this trap. It's more an author's desire for tags rather than the stories need for them.

Crumbly Writer

@Dominions Son

And it's not that I personally find it hard to do as an author. As a reader, in my opinion, most of the attempts at it that I have read fail badly.

IMHO, that's mostly because the authors don't prioritize the story. You have to ask yourself, is this a sci-fi piece (i.e. what's your Primary genre) and what's secondary to that. For me, the stories work because I write 'hard sci-fi', meaning there's GOT to be a scientific explanation for the psychic abilities, so the abilities fit into the broader genre. I suspect that, where many authors run into trouble, is they're just writing out scenes and not thinking about how they fit into the story at all (like when you have vampires fighting werewolves in space for the love of the high-school beauty queen).

In short, they too end up as 'hot messes'.

Crumbly Writer

@Capt. Zapp

I agree. Also if using more than a few tags under a category (IE the incest tags) instead of selecting each individual tag, just use the general category tag instead of all the individual tags, even if some of the specific tags don't apply.

Way back when, there was an active discussion where we floated the idea of 'category tags', which would specify 'everything in the specific category' instead of listing every single one (i.e. the category tags would be an entirely separate tag). But Lazeez quickly shot it down as being too difficult to maintain and keep track of.

Still, many of us continue to hold onto that ideal when adding our own tags.

Replies:   Capt. Zapp
robberhands

@Crumbly Writer

In that case, I'd prefer a warning at the start of the chapter, rather than a tag labeling the entire story to be gay centered.

If every tag means the entire story is centered on that tag, a lot of stories would have quite a number of centers. Or in other words, I wouldn't use any of the sex content tags anymore because none of my stories centers around a specific sexual act or about sex in general. That in exchange would mean I'd have to warn at every damn chapter that contains a sex scene about the specific aspects of the scene. Thank you very much, but I prefere to stay with my personel view on the meaning of the tags, which also defines the way I use them.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
robberhands

@Crumbly Writer

So if I have a character in story who frequently works out, I should label the entire story 'small breast' because someone who loves HHH-bra sizes might be 'offended' by someone who isn't likely to topple over at any moment, even if it has no relation to any specific sex act?

Sure, if you think that small breasts are a squick worthy content, go ahead and warn your readers by using that tag.

Crumbly Writer

@robberhands

If every tag means the entire story is centered on that tag, a lot of stories would have quite a number of centers. Or in other words, I wouldn't use any of the sex content tags anymore because none of my stories centers around a specific sexual act or about sex in general. That in exchange would mean I'd have to warn at every damn chapter that contains a sex scene about the specific aspects of the scene. Thank you very much, but I prefere to stay with my personel view on the meaning of the tags, which also defines the way I use them.

Again, I've never used any of the various racial tags, despite having characters of various races in my stories, because the tags themselves are about sexual stereotypes, not about who the characters are.

We're drawing a distinction between sex-based tags and character-based tags. An "inc" tag should always be included in there is incest involved in the story, though if there's a single instance of some MM experimentation, I'd include it (without tags), but I'd include the warning (both for the specific chapter and also in the story description), because I don't want to be guilty of false advertising.

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands

@Crumbly Writer

We're drawing a distinction ...

We are drawing? Is that the plural of you are drawing? sunkuwan started this particular discussion by naming the BDSM-tag example; is that a sex-based tag or a character-based tag?

Ernest Bywater

@Crumbly Writer

In that case, I'd prefer a warning at the start of the chapter, rather than a tag labeling the entire story to be gay centered.


CW,

I have to disagree with this approach. If I get well into a story only to suddenly find any sort of warning that I feel would've had me skip the story if it had been so tagged I'd dump the story and score it a 1 for poor writing by using deceptive practice to encourage people to read it when they would normally skip it.

I don't care what the tag is to do with. They're there to help people with deciding to read a story or not, thus anything that is not in the tag or the description on the story listing is an abuse of the tag system.

If it's a single scene that may squick people and you don't feel it should be tagged, then put a warning in the story description, but don't leave it to somewhere within the story to be found later.

Replies:   Capt. Zapp
Capt. Zapp

@Crumbly Writer

we floated the idea of 'category tags', which would specify 'everything in the specific category'


Actually, the categories that are most likely to have a majority of the interrelated sub-category tags listed (Incest, BDSM, Interracial, Paranormal, Science Fiction) HAVE the category itself available as a tag. Just because every possible combination of incest occurs in the story except for grandma doesn't mean you have to select all the others. Just tag it as Incest and be done with it. Same with interracial. Just because your story doesn't include every type doesn't mean all have to be tagged except for the missing one.

Ernest Bywater
Updated:

OK, I'm ready to be howled at. However, the tags should be applied for whatever goes on in the story. This is especially so for the tags that people may see as a squick or a special fetish.

If I have a 100,000 word story and there is one 25 word graphic sex scene in it I have to mark it as minimal sex and not no sex. That's because the ID of the sex content is relevant regardless of the level of it, the same is true for most tags. I say most because there are some where you can get by with a more general tag instead of a bunch of specific tags.

Take the age/gender tags - if you have a bunch of different scenes with different mixed groups instead listing each mix option you can go with the Mult code to show there's a lot of mixes and use 1 tag instead of several. With the general Incest code tag I would expect to see a mix on incestuous relationships while a story with only one or two of the incest relationship tags would be limited to only those couple of relationships. The same is applicable with using the Interracial code for multiple interracial options instead of only one or two of the options. In both those codes once I got to three of the other tags being relevant I'd swap them all for the more general one.

It all comes down to an intelligent application, not a blind hit of everything under the sun.

edit to fix error

robberhands
Updated:

@Ernest Bywater

If I have a 100,000 word story and there is one 25 word graphic sex scene in it I have to mark it as some sex and not no sex.

I principally agree with you, although In this case I'd go with the minimal sex tag but I guess that was rather a mistake than a point of disagreement.

Furthermore, I'd never tag 'small breasts' or 'big breasts' unless it amounts to a fetish within the story, which also defines my view on many sex content tags. Lastly, I view the 'interacial' tag and its varying options as a warning of racist tendencies in a story.

Ernest Bywater

@robberhands

I principally agree with you, although In this case I'd go with the minimal sex tag but I guess that was rather a mistake than a point of disagreement.


you're right, I don't do enough sex stories to remember the order of the categories between no and much.

Ernest Bywater

@robberhands

I'd never tag 'small breasts' or 'big breasts' unless it amounts to a fetish within the story


agreed.

awnlee jawking

@robberhands

Lastly, I view the the 'interacial' tag and it's varying options as a warning of racist tendencies in a story.


I disagree. Miscegenation is still a squick for a large proportion of the planet, so even if there were no racism in the story whatsoever, I'd still advise adding the code. (Yes, that makes me a hypocrite).

AJ

Switch Blayde

@Ernest Bywater

Incest code tag I would expect to see a mix on incestuous relationships while a story with only one or two of the incest relationship tags would be limited to only those couple of relationships.


Except Category Search wouldn't find a story only tagged with incest when the reader is searching on mother, son.

Replies:   Not_a_ID
robberhands

@awnlee jawking

(Yes, that makes me a hypocrite).

I agree.

Not_a_ID

@Switch Blayde

Except Category Search wouldn't find a story only tagged with incest when the reader is searching on mother, son.


If that was a central focus(above and beyond the other incest going on) then including it as its own tag may be warranted in that case. Otherwise, the person searching will just have to figure out better ways to search. ;)

I do think a variant of Ernest's suggestion is relevant and that an additional Author's note/warning (foreword) about "potential squicks" which may appear in the course of the story but are not featured elements is a good one to have apart from the normal listing. (Where the author may additionally opt to provide (vague) context information as well. But have it NOT be part of the summary. If a "spoiler" feature was included, authors could possibly go a bit further with that.)

Basically include it as chapter 1 or part of the index so it is encountered before getting into the story itself.

But that might be a bit of a bear for Laz to code for.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Not_a_ID

@awnlee jawking

I disagree. Miscegenation is still a squick for a large proportion of the planet, so even if there were no racism in the story whatsoever, I'd still advise adding the code. (Yes, that makes me a hypocrite).


I have a parent that resembles that. But I don't think he goes surfing for porn or otherwise erotic materials either.

I'm more inclined to say most of "the hottest" people on the planet are "mixed" and I am not going to say no to more of that. 😎

Replies:   awnlee jawking
Ernest Bywater

@Not_a_ID

Basically include it as chapter 1 or part of the index so it is encountered before getting into the story itself.


It should be before I open the story itself. So that puts it in the tags or the story description. If you have to open the story before you see it that gives the story an unjustified download count.

There's one story I was reading that was very good until I hit the untagged extreme torture scene in the middle of the story. What made it worse was it was totally unexpected with absolutely no warning. If the only warning I had was at the start of the chapter it would have been just as bad and just as annoying for having wasted my time reading to that point.

The tags are there to be used, authors are instructed to use them, so they should.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
awnlee jawking

@Not_a_ID

I'm more inclined to say most of "the hottest" people on the planet are "mixed"


Can't argue with that. But, for example, the UK has a significant Asian population who'd happily throw acid or worse over a daughter if she started dating a white guy.

AJ

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands

@awnlee jawking

But, for example, the UK has a significant Asian population who'd happily throw acid or worse over a daughter if she started dating a white guy.

Feel free to write stories for their enjoyment. However, I feel less inclined and also won't tag any of my stories considering their sensibilities.

Capt. Zapp

@Ernest Bywater

If I get well into a story only to suddenly find any sort of warning that I feel would've had me skip the story


Do you throw away deadtree books if you come across something like that?

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@Capt. Zapp

Do you throw away deadtree books if you come across something like that?


Used bookshops are handy for that, and so is the never read again author list.

REP
Updated:

@awnlee jawking


Miscegenation


Two people of different races having kids and having sex are different things and neither is a racist activity. We don't have a code for Miscegenation or for Racist activities. Personally, I don't think we need the codes.

Ernest Bywater

@REP

Two people of different races having kids and having sex are different things and neither is a racist activity. We don't have a code for Miscegenation or for Racist activities. Personally, I don't think we need the codes.


I agree, and (in my mind) the use of the racially distinctive codes should only be used where the racial difference is included as a fetish type reason. If a character is seeking out persons of another ethnic ot racial group for sex because they prefer that group as sex partners, then the code is appropriate, if it just so happens the two characters are of different ethnic or racial groups and those aspects of their background play no part in their actions then the tags for ethnic or racial mixing aren't relevant.

sejintenej
Updated:

@Crumbly Writer


(no offense to the traditional fags intended (i.e. British cigarettes)).


or (in the UK) personal slave**. Perhaps we need a tag for that (says he tongue in cheek).

Anyone who translates that fag to "swab" has probably been to hell (housie) and back.

sejintenej

@sunkuwan

Just do a warning either in the introduction or the particular chapter.

Excellent idea - I have seen that warning a number of times when the normal tone of a story is changed (example: extreme violence in an otherwise staid story). Perhaps a tag with warning that it applies to a short section which can safely be missed

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
sejintenej

@Ernest Bywater

if it just so happens the two characters are of different ethnic or racial groups and those aspects of their background play no part in their actions then the tags for ethnic or racial mixing aren't relevant.

Comment endorsed; in many areas you see so many people of mixed backgrounds that it is no longer notable

awnlee jawking

@REP

I agree, but I recognise that some people are turned off by interracial sex and it wouldn't harm an author to use the 'interracial' tag as a squick alert.

AJ

Replies:   StarFleet Carl  REP
StarFleet Carl

@awnlee jawking

I agree, but I recognise that some people are turned off by interracial sex and it wouldn't harm an author to use the 'interracial' tag as a squick alert.


Just curious now. What would you think of a story with Sarek of Vulcan and Amanda Grayson, versus something between Nyota Uhura and Hikaru Sulu? (The actual characters, not the actors.) The first would be interracial, since Vulcans and Humans are different races, while the second wouldn't, because both are Human.

Crumbly Writer

@robberhands

Furthermore, I'd never tag 'small breasts' or 'big breasts' unless it amounts to a fetish within the story, which also defines my view on many sex content tags. Lastly, I view the 'interacial' tag and its varying options as a warning of racist tendencies in a story.

The "small breasts"/"big breasts" discussion was my absurdum argument (look it up if anyone is unfamiliar with the term). As for the 'racist tendencies' tag, that was my point, that many of the tags only apply to very specific uses, and are best avoided wholesale by most authors.

Crumbly Writer

@awnlee jawking

Miscegenation is still a squick for a large proportion of the planet, so even if there were no racism in the story whatsoever, I'd still advise adding the code. (Yes, that makes me a hypocrite).

Personally, I'd consider each 1-bomb by an outright racist to be a badge of honor to be worn proudly and defiantly. You can't expect to cater to the lowest rung on the moral ladder and still claim credibility with anyone.

With my own 1-bombers, I engaged in discussions with them, suggesting alternatives in the story line, but assuming they had me on the ropes, they demanded that I make specific political statements of their own choosing, at which point I said "FU" and doubled down, making the statements even more pointed.

If you aren't willing to compromise with someone, you can't dictate what's an acceptable practice, as it reduces your protest to simple schoolyard threats. If you want an author to tout your party line, then write your own political screed. In my case, I don't write political screeds, I instead write fiction stories that sometimes have a character with a particular political inclination.

Crumbly Writer

@Ernest Bywater

Basically include it as chapter 1 or part of the index so it is encountered before getting into the story itself.

It should be before I open the story itself. So that puts it in the tags or the story description. If you have to open the story before you see it that gives the story an unjustified download count.

In my case, my initial post on the subject (in this thread) clearly stated that, while I may not include specific tags if it only constituted a tiny portion of the story, I also specified I'd flag it early on, either in the description or in a note in the first chapter as well as the chapter where it exists. But I just don't think it's honest to tag the entire story with MM if it only occupies a small portion of a single chapter in a 100 chapter story.

However, in most of my cases, if it occupies a single chapter in a 20 chapter story, then yes, it would deserve a specific tag for it.

You do want to avoid squicks, but you also don't want to promise what you have NO intention of delivering. That's akin to including the 'WS' tag when the story only contains a single reference to a small boy relieving himself against a tree in the woods. That misuse deserves a 1-bomb, more than a short reference to a necessary encounter in the story which doesn't accurately reflect the true nature of the story.

Replies:   robberhands
Crumbly Writer

@sejintenej

Excellent idea - I have seen that warning a number of times when the normal tone of a story is changed (example: extreme violence in an otherwise staid story). Perhaps a tag with warning that it applies to a short section which can safely be missed

Pulling the rug out from under readers is always a call for 1-bombs, whether it's properly coded for or not. If you're going to throw something like that into a story, you'd best plan for it, and prepare the readers for it. That involves proper foreshadowing, so the readers are at least aware that it's a possibility.

But simply waking up one day, feeling particularly peevish and dumping on your readers for no apparent readers is NOT a way to win reader approvals.

There's a way to include controversial material in stories, and that's why, even when people protest my stories, they continue reading them.

Some of my biggest protests are when I kill of main characters, and readers protest that, 'although I read your repeated warnings, I assumed you'd never do it'. Yet, in each of those cases, while the scores dipped just after I posted the offending chapter, the stories' scores rose over time to some of my all time highs. So I must be doing something correctly.

Replies:   REP
robberhands

@Crumbly Writer

You do want to avoid squicks, but you also don't want to promise what you have NO intention of delivering. That's akin to including the 'WS' tag when the story only contains a single reference to a small boy relieving himself against a tree in the woods.

No, it's not and you should damn well know that. The 'Water Sports' tag is a coding for a sexual activity and a little boy relieving himself against a tree is nothing sexual. That's not an exaggeration to emphasize your point, it's a blatant stupidity.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Crumbly Writer

@StarFleet Carl

The first would be interracial, since Vulcans and Humans are different races, while the second wouldn't, because both are Human.

Having just completed a story like that, I've got to object to your terms. The first is clearly 'interspecies', while the latter is 'interracial', a largely nebulous concept based almost exclusively on the particular shade of someone's skin, with virtually NO specific scientific basis.

Warning: don't get me started, as I raised two mixed-race kids, and I personally witnessed the unwarranted attacks they faced for something they had no control over.

Crumbly Writer

@robberhands

That's not an exaggeration to emphasize your point, it's a blatant stupidity.

Try looking up "Reducto absurdum" in Wiki (spit, spit). My point was to emphasize how stupid the first argument was by taking the claim to it's extreme. The point wasn't that anyone should mis-code a story, but that coding exclusively for squicks is itself a form of false advertising for people actively searching for those stories. Thus the inclusion of those tags is often a double-edged sword, cutting the author from both directions while pleasing no one!

Replies:   robberhands  Not_a_ID
robberhands

@Crumbly Writer

Try looking up "Reducto absurdum"

You have to look it up. Your given example is absurd but it hasn't any logical correlation to the argument. Your simply making statements and basing them solely on your personal opinion on the importance of tag warnings versus their value as an advertisement.

awnlee jawking

@StarFleet Carl

I'm not familiar with those characters but, from your descriptions, IMO the tag 'interracial' should be used in the second case to avoid upsetting racist squicksters.

Others may have different opinions.

AJ

Switch Blayde

@Ernest Bywater

and (in my mind) the use of the racially distinctive codes should only be used where the racial difference is included as a fetish type reason.


Whoa, you gotta be careful there. I have interracial and slavery in my most recent story. Those looking for that fetish will hate the story. But they're integral to the story and a big part of the story. And that's what story codes are for.

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands

@Switch Blayde

I have interracial and slavery in my most recent story.

The 'interracial' tag is justified because you have racist characters acting in your story. If you wouldn't, you also wouldn't need that tag.

Capt. Zapp

@awnlee jawking

I'm not familiar with those characters


They are all characters from 'Star Trek'.

Sarek of Vulcan (Race = Vulcan) and Amanda Grayson (Race = Earth Human) are Spock's parents.

Nyota Uhura (Swahili ancestry) and Hikaru Sulu (Japanese ancestry) are both Earth Human. I use the term 'Earth Human' since the human race has moved out into the stars.

awnlee jawking

@robberhands

I disagree. The site description is:

"Interracial Sexual partners of different races"

Nothing about racism. Your current story includes instances of racism but I personally wouldn't use the interracial tag for that reason alone.

AJ

Replies:   robberhands
sejintenej
Updated:

@Crumbly Writer


don't get me started, as I raised two mixed-race kids, and I personally witnessed the unwarranted attacks they faced for something they had no control over


Clearly understood; for the benefit of others, we had the same problem over the children of two pure Caucasian children - pale Italian and Anglo-Irish

I suppose some readers would want the Inter-racial tag

REP

@awnlee jawking

but I recognise that some people are turned off


Our readers have many squicks. If we code a story to alert every reader to every possible squick, then our list of codes and warnings in the chapters could be longer than the story.

For example: Taking a bath in jello (flavored gelatin) might be a squick to some people. Would you add that as a code or warning if someone in your story liked to bath in jello?

robberhands

@awnlee jawking

So what? The site code definitions explain every code but they don't tell you when to apply them to your story.

I also don't apply the 'oral sex' tag just because some guy gets a blow job. So why should I apply the 'interracial' tag just because some people aren't as lily white as others?

Furthermore, I've no idea what you're referring to with your comment about 'racist instances' in my current story since I didn't specify any racial features in this fantasy setting.

REP

@robberhands

The 'interracial' tag is justified because you have racist characters


Interracial is about people of different races interacting. If none of the people are racists, it is still appropriate.

We don't have a Racist code. Using Interracial to mean Racist is an inaccurate use of the code. A warning would be more appropriate.

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands

@REP

We don't have a Racist code. Using Interracial to mean Racist is an inaccurate use of the code. A warning would be more appropriate.

That may be your opinion but it isn't mine. The 'interracial' tag can either be applied to advertise a fetish or to warn of racist happenings in a story. Otherwise, it's totally superfluous. That's my point of view.

Replies:   REP  Crumbly Writer
REP
Updated:

@Crumbly Writer


dumping on your readers


Dumping from whose perspective?


Personally, I believe the Art of Writing includes presenting scenes in an unexpected and surprising manner. If a reader is caught off guard, then I've done a good job.

I wrote a story with 2 co-MCs who were happily married. The wife was pregnant when I killed her off. The first 8 chapters were sort of a romance story, but the chapters were a buildup leading to the revelation of the stories actual plot, which was not a romance story. The wife had to die and comeback as "spirit" for the plot to work.

I warned readers something unexpected would occur in the next few chapters without specifying what would happen.

When I killed her off, one reader swore she would never read another of my stories and another said that it was sad but death was just part of life.

If you are true to the Art, you will upset some readers when you have your characters do something that readers don't like.

You can't wrap up everyone in cotton batting to protect them from things they don't like.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
awnlee jawking

@robberhands

So why should I apply the 'interracial' tag just because some people aren't as lily white as others?


I don't think you should, unless the characters are indulging in sex.

I didn't specify any racial features in this fantasy setting.


I thought I'd seen references to skin colour. Even if I'm wrong, your story includes several different races that dislike each other.

AJ

Replies:   REP  robberhands  Switch Blayde
REP

@robberhands

That's my point of view


We all view things differently. I won't try to change your mind, but I don't see two people of different races engaged in a loving sexual relationship as being racist.

REP

@awnlee jawking

Even if I'm wrong, your story includes several different races that dislike each other.


If we are thinking of the same story, the dislike is not based on skin color, but on political/economic reasons.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@REP

If we are thinking of the same story, the dislike is not based on skin color, but on political/economic reasons.


We Brits (mostly) hate the French and the Germans and the Spanish. Even though we (mostly) share the same skin colour, newspaper sentiments such as 'Hop Off You Frogs' seem pretty racist to me.

And yet that creates an inconsistency in my opinions. I think readers would expect an 'interracial' story to involve sex between protagonists of different skin colours.

Ho hum!

AJ

Replies:   REP  sejintenej  Crumbly Writer
robberhands

@awnlee jawking

I thought I'd seen references to skin colour. Even if I'm wrong, your story includes several different races that dislike each other.

So you made a racial science research regarding the population of my fantasy world? I am impressed.

The only marginally racial feature I ever mentioned is the dark skin of a southern island population. How you deduced any other races I have no idea. And even the mere implication that there are sveral different races which dislike eachother because of their different races is a pure fantasy on your part.

robberhands
Updated:

@REP

but I don't see two people of different races engaged in a loving sexual relationship as being racist.

And I do? Whatever gave you that idea? All I ever statet is that I wouldn't apply the tag without racist happenings in a story. That's because I otherwise don't care about the race of two people who have sex with eachother.

Replies:   REP
REP

@awnlee jawking

I think readers would expect an 'interracial' story to involve sex between protagonists of different skin colours.


Why would they think that is true in all cases? The story could be about an interracial couple in a non-racial conflict.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
REP

@robberhands

Whatever gave you that idea? All I ever statet is that I wouldn't apply the tag without racist happenings in a story.


Your decision gave me that idea. You would not have made that decision if you did not consider sex between two people of different races to be related to a racist actions.

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands

@REP

You would not have made that decision if you did not consider sex between two people of different races to be related to a racist actions.

Since you conclusion is wrong, it might be your logic isn't as compelling as you thought it is.

Replies:   REP
REP

@robberhands

Or you are fooling yourself regarding your motivation.

Replies:   robberhands
Capt. Zapp

@robberhands

I also don't apply the 'oral sex' tag just because some guy gets a blow job


Imagine this single occurrence scenario: During the progress of the story, it is rumored that Jim and Bob are gay, even though it isn't true. Jerry and Juan are two of the bigmouths spreading the rumor. Tom sees Bob come out of the restroom looking pale and asks what is wrong. Bob says he just walked in on Jerry getting a blowjob from Juan and gives a brief description of what he saw. This occurs in chapter 15 of 28 and is the ONLY instance of m/m or sexual activity between individuals whose racial stock is fairly obvious.

Should this story be coded with m/m, interracial, and gay? Some would say yes as all three things happen and would '1-bomb' for not using the tags.

robberhands

@REP

Or you are fooling yourself regarding your motivation.

Do you want to tell me that you know my attitude better than I do?

Replies:   REP
robberhands

@Capt. Zapp

Imagine this single occurrence scenario:

I don't tell anyone how to code their story and I happily spare me the headache to think about a fictional story and its coding problems.

Keet

Wew, I come back a day after starting this topic and there are 100+ responses and a very active discussion. Thank you all!
Reading all of the posts in this thread I think it is clear that adding good tags requires some heavy considerations from the author.
And there I assume is the problem. I feel some authors really take the effort to think over what tags to add and others do not. Maybe the sites Help should get an extra section for authors giving advise/guidelines in how to determine what tags to set. Something like when to use a general tag and when to add specifics or not. Maybe good tags will get an author more readers but too many tags will certainly scare away some if what I read in some responses is correct.

Replies:   REP  Crumbly Writer
REP

@robberhands

I can only determine what your attitude is by what you say. What you say is founded in your belief system.

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands

@REP

I can only determine what your attitude is by what you say.

You can't determine anything because you don't know enough about me. You just assume but you should stay with what is stated instead of uttering baseless assumptions.

Replies:   REP
REP

@Keet

Keet, the problem is rather complex.

Story codes are basically used for 2 purposes: to warn readers of squicks and to define the content of the story, which is often thought of as attracting readers who have specific interests.

Too few codes can be bad and too many can be bad. As an author, it is hard to define a good balance for a specific story. Some authors say if the code's activity is present in a story to any extent, add the code. That is how a story ends up with many codes. Some authors say, code the main characteristics of the plot and activities and that is how the story can end up with too few codes. Some authors try to reach a balance between those two positions by considering the number of occurrences and overall effect those occurrences have on the plot. Some authors think they should warn the reader about everything a reader might consider a squick, while other authors only warn readers about what the author thinks is a squick.

No matter which way an author goes, someone is going to disagree with them. Without going into the details, many readers ignore the codes the author assigns to the story and ignore the warnings in the description and chapters, and then they complain about the content they find in the story.

sejintenej

@awnlee jawking

We Brits (mostly) hate the French and the Germans and the Spanish. Even though we (mostly) share the same skin colour, newspaper sentiments such as 'Hop Off You Frogs' seem pretty racist to me.

I suspect that this view has been inculcated by the cheap press and a very small minority of the people of foreign origin a few of us actually meet. Having worked in the three countries with their native people I have no antagonistic and no reason to have antagonistic feelings against any of them. (True there is a small geographically confined group who make themselves unpopular even with their own nationality.)

And yet that creates an inconsistency in my opinions. I think readers would expect an 'interracial' story to involve sex between protagonists of different skin colours.

Of course you would have to have people of different races but there is a difference between those people in an intense voluntary and loving relationship and one involving near force and overcoming of unwillingness.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
REP

@robberhands

What I do is accept your statements at face value. I am not assuming what you write, I'm reading it. If what you write matches something I've experienced in the past, I draw a conclusion. I agree conclusions are similar to assumptions.

Keet
Updated:

@REP

I totally agree with the 2 purposes for the tags and that should be possible with say a max of 15 tags IF the author puts some effort in it. Still there will always be someone to complain. That is why I suggested an advise/guidelines section for authors. If all authors use the same guidelines there hopefully will be less disagreements and complaints can be referred back to the guidelines. Seems like win-win to me.

Since starting this topic I have found multiple other topics where category tags and their use are discussed. Laz is very responsive when new tags are requested and some of these hopefully lead to categorizing stories with less tags. I really like the new tags "LitRPG" (to avoid these) and "Rags to Riches" (to find these without trying multiple other combinations to get to the same type of stories).

Replies:   REP
paliden

Robberhands said:
"The 'interracial' tag is justified because you have racist characters acting in your story."

This has been covered by other posters but to recap -

'Interracial' and "Racist" is two completely different words with two completely different meanings.

RACIST

From Dictionary.com - racist: a person who believes in racism, the doctrine that one's own racial group is superior or that a particular racial group is inferior to the others.

From Urban Dictionary.com - racist : the true deffinition is believing that one race is superior to all other. Hatred without reason of another race. ETC

INTERRACIAL

From SOL guidelines - Sexual partners of different races

From Wordnik.com – INTERRACIAL:- Relating to, involving, or representing different races: interracial fellowship; an interracial neighborhood.

SOL does not list a definition for 'Racist' so I suppose 'Racist' can be what the author WANTS it to be.

Because SOL does list a definition for 'Interracial'. I feel that you as an author should be obligated to follow SOL's guidelines to post on SOL.

QUOTE QUOTE

robberhands posted ON 4/25/2018, 11:59:44 AM

Quote

So why should I apply the 'interracial' tag just because some people aren't as lily white as others?

End Quote

In most geographical locations in the United States the words 'lily white' used in the manner that you used in your sentence indicates racist tendencies and/or leanings.

If you can't figure it out don't worry about it.

docholladay

For a story that is completed before posting, the tags should be relevant to the entire story. Since the writer has all the facts about the story with only possible changes being tags created after posting that fit the story.

For a serialized story, the tags should be as complete as possible for the planned story. But state that tags might be added later if needed. Above all be honest with the readers and/or reviewers.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
awnlee jawking

@sejintenej

The French police always target cars with GB plates, even when the drivers aren't doing anything wrong, and they stiffed us when we joined the Common Market. The Germans always beat us on penalties. The Spanish are always trying to nick Gibraltar, and they supported the Argies during the Falklands War. ;)

Feel the hate!

AJ

Replies:   sejintenej
robberhands

@paliden

If you can't figure it out don't worry about it.

That looks like the motto of your post.

Switch Blayde

@awnlee jawking

So why should I apply the 'interracial' tag just because some people aren't as lily white as others?

I don't think you should, unless the characters are indulging in sex.


This goes back to SOL being a sex story site or a story site. I believe the story codes are tied to sex stories. If that's the case, then an interracial couple needs to have sex for the story code to be used. If the codes are used equally for no-sex stories, then it should be used for an interracial relationship.

I once used an example of a no-sex story about the relationship between a male coach and a male teenager. Ma/mt is the code for that. But if someone saw that, they'd assume a gay story.

Both interracial and Ma/mt on SOL must be sex related. They don't exist on Finestories.

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands
Updated:

@Switch Blayde

I believe the story codes are tied to sex stories. If that's the case, then an interracial couple needs to have sex for the story code to be used.

The code definition on SOL agrees with your belief.

Interracial - Sexual partners of different races

richardshagrin

@paliden

lily white

My late wife's maiden name was Lillian White. She didn't like the nickname for Lillian of Lilly because she didn't want to be Lilly White. Her nieces and nephews called her Aunt Lala. My grandmother's maiden name was Walda Victoria Wall. She always used her middle name, Walda Victoria or middle initia Walda V. because she wasn't a carpet sales person and didn't want to be Walda Wall.

Replies:   Capt. Zapp
Capt. Zapp

@richardshagrin

A Mrs Waite worked in the accounting department. If employees needed answers concerning their paychecks, they were told to go to Helen Waite.

Replies:   richardshagrin
StarFleet Carl

@Crumbly Writer

Warning: don't get me started


Not trying to get you riled up. Simply pointing out how something might appear otherwise if we did meet up with other intelligent races from another planet.

Keep in mind we're now less than 45 years from First Contact. I specifically said races instead of species because my example was based in the Star Trek universe, and in that universe, all hominid life had common ancestors. That's WHY Vulcans or Betazoids (or Klingons or Cardassians, even) could mate with Humans and produce progeny.

It would be interspecies if a Horta mated with a Human, because there were no common ancestors.

Yeah, I may also be a bit of a Trekkie ...

Replies:   Dominions Son  REP
StarFleet Carl

@awnlee jawking

I'm not familiar with those characters


Note my handle ... I may be a bit of a Star Trek fan (since about 1966, actually).

Dominions Son

@StarFleet Carl

Yeah, I may also be a bit of a Trekkie ...


StarFleet Carl is a Trekkie...I would have never guessed.

Ernest Bywater
Updated:

@docholladay


For a serialized story, the tags should be as complete as possible for the planned story. But state that tags might be added later if needed. Above all be honest with the readers and/or reviewers.


And don't be surprised if people don't start reading the story until after it's finished being posted, as they want to know all of the relevant tags before they start to read a story.

REP

@Keet

an advise/guidelines section for authors. If all authors use the same guidelines


That is an awfully big IF. Most authors wouldn't read the guidelines. A good number of those who read the guidelines would disagree with certain suggestions and not follow them. Even if an author read the guidelines and tried to follow them, the decision to add or omit a specific tag in a story is often subjective.

We have had numerous discussions about adding tags in the Forum. If you review this thread, you will see that we don't all agree, so who would you get to write the guidelines.

Replies:   Dominions Son
REP

@StarFleet Carl

Keep in mind we're now less than 45 years from First Contact.


First contact hasn't occurred that we know of other than what you read in National Enquirer. So since it hasn't happened in recorded history, what make you thing it is going to happen in the next 45 years. Is someone from outer space telling you they are coming or is someone making unsubstantiated predictions.

robberhands

@REP

So since it hasn't happened in recorded history, what make you thing it is going to happen in the next 45 years.

After he confessed to be a Trekkie that should be obvious.

Star Trek: First Contact (movie from 1996)

According to the film the first contact will happen in 2067.

Replies:   Not_a_ID  Crumbly Writer
richardshagrin

@Capt. Zapp

Helen Waite

Our Credit Manager is Helen Waite. If you want credit, go to hell and wait.

Not_a_ID

@Crumbly Writer

Try looking up "Reducto absurdum" in Wiki (spit, spit). My point was to emphasize how stupid the first argument was by taking the claim to it's extreme. The point wasn't that anyone should mis-code a story, but that coding exclusively for squicks is itself a form of false advertising for people actively searching for those stories. Thus the inclusion of those tags is often a double-edged sword, cutting the author from both directions while pleasing no one!


I am a bigger fan of hot coding Water Polo and Water Volleyball under "water sports" because I find that particular usage completely hilarious. Bonus points if the MC pees in the pool while the match is underway.

Replies:   richardshagrin
Not_a_ID

@robberhands

According to the film the first contact will happen in 2067.


Of course, also by Trek Lore we should have already fought the Eugenics Wars against Khan and he should have fled on a cryogenic sleeper ship, among other significant events.

richardshagrin

@Not_a_ID

Water Polo and Water Volleyball

If the water is frozen, like ice skating or ice dancing, is is still water sports?

robberhands

@Not_a_ID

Of course, also by Trek Lore we should have already fought the Eugenics Wars against Khan and he should have fled on a cryogenic sleeper ship, among other significant events.

I'll take that at face value. I'm no Trekkie and googled enough Star Trek context for one day.

Dominions Son

@REP

so who would you get to write the guidelines.


Lazeez. If he decided to pick (or create his own) a style guide and enforce it's use, we'd all have to go along.

Of course, he's unlikely to do that because actually enforcing it would be a huge amount of work.

Replies:   REP
doctor_wing_nut

@Capt. Zapp


I also don't apply the 'oral sex' tag just because some guy gets a blow job

Imagine this single occurrence scenario: During the progress of the story, it is rumored that Jim and Bob are gay, even though it isn't true. Jerry and Juan are two of the bigmouths spreading the rumor. Tom sees Bob come out of the restroom looking pale and asks what is wrong. Bob says he just walked in on Jerry getting a blowjob from Juan and gives a brief description of what he saw. This occurs in chapter 15 of 28 and is the ONLY instance of m/m or sexual activity between individuals whose racial stock is fairly obvious.

Should this story be coded with m/m, interracial, and gay? Some would say yes as all three things happen and would '1-bomb' for not using the tags.


As stated earlier, I don't read m/m stories. However, if I was reading the story described above, I would not run screaming into the night at the mention of a m/m blowjob - and I wouldn't expect that example to be worthy of a code unless it was described in detail, or was integral to the ongoing plot.

I'm not that easily offended.

Replies:   Capt. Zapp
Capt. Zapp
Updated:

@doctor_wing_nut


As stated earlier, I don't read m/m stories. However, if I was reading the story described above, I would not run screaming into the night at the mention of a m/m blowjob - and I wouldn't expect that example to be worthy of a code unless it was described in detail, or was integral to the ongoing plot.

I'm not that easily offended.


I agree. yet there are some who have insinuated that it should have been coded as all three or they would 1-bomb the story.

I recently skipped almost an entire chapter of an ongoing story because of the subject matter which took up most that one chapter. I didn't 1-bomb, but I did send the author a note that I was disappointed in that particular chapter. Did I stop reading the story or any others by the same author? Nope. I was too engrossed in the main story to be put off by something I could easily avoid by skipping ahead. Just knowing the theme of what had occurred in the section I skipped was enough information to understand later interactions of the characters involved.

ETA: I did send a followup message to the author letting him know how much I enjoyed the following chapter and that I plan to continue reading his work as it becomes available.

Too bad I can't avoid the 'noise' coming from certain vehicles as easily.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
REP

@Dominions Son

What you say is a possibility and true. However, Keet talked about "an advise/guidelines section" and that could be written by anyone.

Replies:   Keet
Crumbly Writer

@robberhands

The 'interracial' tag is justified because you have racist characters acting in your story. If you wouldn't, you also wouldn't need that tag.

Sorry, but the 'interracial' tag doesn't refer to 'interracial attitudes', but refers specifically to interracial sexual acts (i.e. it's a sex code, not a social code). You may want to use it for other purposes, but readers are unlikely to accept your unfounded definition of the term, and are likely to respond negatively to your misbegotten usage of the tag.

Personally, I'd prefer that we replaced all those various interracial tags (ex: (BBM)) with a single tag ('racist content').

Crumbly Writer

@robberhands

I also don't apply the 'oral sex' tag just because some guy gets a blow job. So why should I apply the 'interracial' tag just because some people aren't as lily white as others?

That's the whole point. You wouldn't! You only use the various racial codes when you're using racial stereotypes to describes sex acts, otherwise, you NEVER use the tags. You'll notice there is NO tag for SBM (small, or even 'medium-sized' black men, only BIG black men).

However, there IS no code for 'racism'. If you want to use one, include it in your story description, as it's not the kind of thing which would attract many readers to the site, while most people recognize what "BBM" or "Asian" refers to without having to overthink it.

REP

@Crumbly Writer

Good luck, CW.

Robberhands refuses to accept Lazeez's definition of 'interracial'. He seems to read Racist into the Lazeez's definition and refuses to accept what it actually says.

I argued the point with him and he said I had my definition, which was Lazeez's, and he had his.

The only way I see someone getting Racist out of Lazeez' definition is if they believe sex between two people of different races is a Racist act.

Replies:   Not_a_ID
Crumbly Writer

@robberhands

That may be your opinion but it isn't mine.

It doesn't matter, what matters is what readers would expect. If you use "M" to mean "yellow parrot", then expect to take some heat for it. But if every author 'invents' their own definitions for each story tag, then we'll have utter chaos when it comes time to evaluate what any particular story is about.

In my case, there are whole classes of tags I wouldn't approach with a ten-foot pole. Rather than simply 'redefining' what I think they SHOULD mean, I simply avoid them altogether.

Replies:   robberhands
Ernest Bywater

The question about the use of what codes to use and how they should be used has been raised a few times. Thus I refer everyone to the following site resources.

Code / tag definitions are all at:

https://storiesonline.net/docs/code_faq.php

How you're supposed to use them are at:

https://storiesonline.net/author/posting_guidelines.php

near the bottom of the page it says:

Correct, Precise Codes:
Correct codes are extremely important. Most people use the codes to decide whether they want to read a story or not. The more precise your codes are the better your scores will be. If you put the wrong codes or you miss some codes or even put extra codes, you risk the chance of people retaliating by giving you low scores.

For example, if you put the romance code in your story's codes, while your story is a rape story, then you'll attract those people that are looking for romance and when they find the rape in there then they'll be shocked and the result is usually a vote of 1. And by not labeling the rape, you won't attract those interested in reading about a rape who would give your story a higher score. So it's all about attracting the right audience.

Precise coding is also important. Excessive coding is bad. If something is mentioned in the story but not described, then it shouldn't coded for. Anything that happens offscreen shouldn't be coded for. For example, if a woman gets raped, and the story doesn't contain the rape scene, only a mention that the woman was raped, then the story doesn't need the 'Rape' code. Use your judgement and try to see it from the readers point. If you see a code in the story what would it mean to you? Code accordingly.

Make sure that you read the Code FAQ to have a clear understanding of what each code means. If you have codes that are crucial to your story and are not in the list then email me.


I think if you all take time to read those 2 resources you'd realise most of the disputed points have been covered by Lazeez.

robberhands

@Crumbly Writer

Sorry, but the 'interracial' tag doesn't refer to 'interracial attitudes', but refers specifically to interracial sexual acts (i.e. it's a sex code, not a social code). You may want to use it for other purposes, but readers are unlikely to accept your unfounded definition of the term, and are likely to respond negatively to your misbegotten usage of the tag.

The story type codes aside, all codes are sexual content codes. I didn't think it was necessary to mention it explicitly . What you quoted was from a comment I made to SB and a particular story. In this particular story, the 'interracial' content is sexual and racist ( the bad guys are slavers and racists).

Replies:   REP  Ernest Bywater
StarFleet Carl

@Not_a_ID

Of course, also by Trek Lore we should have already fought the Eugenics Wars against Khan and he should have fled on a cryogenic sleeper ship, among other significant events.


Alternate universes. Not necessarily totally of the 'Mirror, Mirror' episode type (although I did like Spock with a beard), but once you go back into the past, are you sure you're returning to the future of your OWN timeline, because with alternate universes, THE timeline is equally valid across ALL the universes.

Switch Blayde

@Crumbly Writer

Personally, I'd prefer that we replaced all those various interracial tags (ex: (BBM)) with a single tag ('racist content').


I'd say 99+% of the interracial stories are not racist stories. It's the "well-hung black man/white woman who can't get enough of it" stories.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
REP

@robberhands

the bad guys are slavers and racists).


Yes it is true. SB's story has white characters who are racists. Those characters do rape black women. The rapes are motivated by their racist leaning. All true.

The point you keep missing is, SB included the Interracial tag because white men have sex with black women. Lazeez's definition of the tag is people of different races engaging in sex. Inclusion of the tag was based on Lazeez definition and had nothing to do with the men being Racists or with the rapes being Racist acts.

robberhands

@Crumbly Writer

I'm well aware that 'interracial' and 'racist' are two different things, and I never stated they are the same. I'm pretty tired of all these stupid allegations.

From my point of view, there are only two reasons to apply the interracial tag:

1. The 'interracial' relationships in the story caters a fetish and the author wants to advertise this fact.

2. The 'interracial' content of the story has at least in part a racist connotation. In this case, I also would apply the 'interracial' tag. This time as a warning.

If the interracial relationship between characters is just a 'normal' love affair, I wouldn't apply the 'interracial' tag.

Ernest Bywater

@robberhands

The story type codes aside, all codes are sexual content codes.


While a lot of them are related to described sexual activity, not all codes are. The Interracial code relates specifically to described interracial sex because it says so in the definition. Thus if there's no sex described between the 2 characters that code isn't relevant to the story.

However, unless the interracial aspect is seen as a fetish aspect of the sexual encounter described, I doubt many authors would list it.

robberhands
Updated:

@Ernest Bywater

However, unless the interracial aspect is seen as a fetish aspect of the sexual encounter described, I doubt many authors would list it.

Yes! And I listed a second reason when I (no one else should feel obligated to follow it) would apply the tag.

Switch Blayde

@REP

The point you keep missing is, SB included the Interracial tag because white men have sex with black women.


True.

Switch Blayde

@robberhands

If the interracial relationship between characters is just a 'normal' love affair, I wouldn't apply the 'interracial' tag.


I don't believe that's SOL's definition.

doctor_wing_nut

@robberhands

From my point of view, there are only two reasons to apply the interracial tag:

1. The 'interracial' relationships in the story caters a fetish and the author wants to advertise this fact.

2. The 'interracial' content of the story has at least in part a racist connotation. In this case, I also would apply the 'interracial' tag. This time as a warning.

If the interracial relationship between characters is just a 'normal' love affair, I wouldn't apply the 'interracial' tag.


I no longer read any of your work, so I don't know how things are working for you with your interpretation of code definitions, but if I saw the 'Interracial' code affixed to a story I would NOT be expecting either of those definitions to apply. I go by the stated definitions of story codes as listed on the site and referenced previously, and used by the majority of authors I have encountered.

I guess 'alternative facts' are everywhere now.

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands

@REP

The point you keep missing is, SB included the Interracial tag because white men have sex with black women.

I didn't miss it at all. Unlike you, I'm unable to read SB's mind. I don't know his reasons to apply the tag and don't speculate. What I did was representing my personal opinion on the matter.

Replies:   REP
Switch Blayde

@Ernest Bywater

However, unless the interracial aspect is seen as a fetish aspect of the sexual encounter described, I doubt many authors would list it.


I would. I did.

Ernest, you don't see American TV commercials, but I've noticed recently that a significant number of them have interracial couples and mixed raced children. Knowing the advertising industry, this is not an accident. They are targeting a group of people. The story codes are used to target potential readers.

robberhands

@doctor_wing_nut

I no longer read any of your work, so I don't know how things are working for you with your interpretation of code definitions,...

I never received a complaint about my application of story tags. That's all I can say about it.

Replies:   Switch Blayde
Ernest Bywater

@Switch Blayde

Ernest, you don't see American TV commercials, but I've noticed recently that a significant number of them have interracial couples and mixed raced children. Knowing the advertising industry, this is not an accident. They are targeting a group of people.


SB, I've seen some US ads on some of the YouTube videos I've watched. I've also seen a lot of rhetoric over the last decade about TV ads around the world. While it is possible the US ad companies are targeting different racial groups I think it's much more likely they're trying to avoid being targeted by the abusive leftists for not having different racial groups in their ads so they stick them in to avoid being accused of racism. We've seen that happening in a lot of the visual media over the last two decades or more.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer  Not_a_ID
robberhands

@Switch Blayde

I don't believe that's SOL's definition.

I pretty sure we don't have to argue about the definition of 'Big Breasts'. I also won't apply the 'Big Breasts' tag when a woman with big breasts in my stories has sex.

It's not a question of the code definition, it's a question when to apply a tag.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Switch Blayde

@robberhands

I never received a complaint about my application of story tags.


I have. I used to write a lot of non-consent stories with blackmail, coercion, etc. I tagged them as non-consent and the applicable type. Readers complained that I didn't have the rape code.

Since it wasn't a violent knock-down rape, I didn't include it. The readers didn't agree. To them, non-consent = rape.

Authors can only do what they think is right.

robberhands

@Switch Blayde

Authors can only do what they think is right.

Absolutely. That's what I do as well.

Capt. Zapp

Caution. This story may contain references or descriptions of subject matter in any of the available Tag categories. The quantity of said subject matter may be briefly mentioned or extremely graphic. Read at your own risk.

Replies:   REP  sejintenej
REP

@robberhands

What I did was representing my personal opinion on the matter.


I can accept your earlier comments being a personal opinion.

I didn't have to read SB mind about why he added the interracial code. I sent him a feedback message and we chatted.

Replies:   robberhands
REP

@Capt. Zapp

The quantity of said subject matter may be briefly mentioned or extremely graphic.


Your caution sounds great. I would make one change to the above so it read as follows:

There may be brief passages of content relating to story codes not listed and that brief content may be extremely graphic.

Replies:   Capt. Zapp
robberhands
Updated:

@REP

I didn't have to read SB mind about why he added the interracial code. I sent him a feedback message and we chatted.

Then I apologize for my snide comment.

Replies:   REP
REP

@robberhands

Accepted.

richardshagrin

@Crumbly Writer

BBM

I can't remember what it means. Big ballistic missile? Brown Bowel Movement? Bisexual Business Machine? BB is a battleship. Maybe a medium battleship?

Replies:   awnlee jawking
Capt. Zapp

@REP

Your caution sounds great.


Glad you liked it. It was meant as tongue-in-cheek, but I think there may be a use for it somewhere down the line. Thanks for your recommended change.

CZ

awnlee jawking

@richardshagrin

BBM isn't a SOL tag. However it's the code for Battambang Airport in Cambodia.

AJ

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
sejintenej
Updated:

@awnlee jawking


The French police always target cars with GB plates, even when the drivers aren't doing anything wrong, and they stiffed us when we joined the Common Market. The Germans always beat us on penalties. The Spanish are always trying to nick Gibraltar, and they supported the Argies during the Falklands War. ;)

Feel the hate!


AJ; after working in Gibraltar and 18 years in France I beg to differ.

I worked in Gib when the border was shut by Franco - or so they said. In practice senior Spanish did cross the border in order to use the airport - I watched one such case. I do see that the border may yet again be closed and that will hurt Spain far more than the people of Gibraltar (as last time).

France is two countries; well outside the Ile de France there is no problem (except that many of them have problems with the Parisien attitude).

Targeting cars with GB plates - yes because of the number of such cars seen massacring the speed limits or otherwise breaking very simple regulations - Brits are notorious for that, especially around Calais.

In all of Europe I have only once been asked for my car papers and that was Spanish border officials when I was returning to France! I have never been asked for my driving licence in Europe despite even the many border crossings. Yes, I have often had the car spot searched because we were close to Andorra which is duty free, not in the EU and France has import limitation restrictions on tobacco, alcohol etc..

I had dealings on occasion with the gendarmerie - both when they were making enquiries (not about me!) and in the bar. They were always so decent to deal with that I was tempted to shake hands but didn't - merely touching a gendarme can be considered a criminal act. And yes, on one occasion they did have cause to suggest that I drive in a different manner - words, nothing in writing, no charge, no fine - just a few easy words.

Those bureaucrats that I had to deal with (mayors, local councillors, planning approval bosses etc.) were the same - a pleasure to deal with and always very helpful**. Like anywhere else if you barge in and act as God then you will get their backs up - it is not necessary

** regarding planning approvals I had exactly the same positive suggestions here in the UK from their equivalent.

AJ; you have to separate the ordinary French away from their politicians; two different species

Spain supported the Argies; well, so did the USA. On that lies a story. My cousin, a naval officer. was sent to Washington during the problems but their navy refused to put telephone calls through to him. The callers would ask for Lieutenant Major and the Americans would answer "we do not have Majors in the navy" before putting the phone down.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
sejintenej

@Capt. Zapp

Caution. This story may contain references or descriptions of subject matter in any of the available Tag categories. [etc]. Read at your own risk

Please, please. OK so it is accurate but negates the whole purpose of tags. If you bung that in I will know that pigs or giraffes are boffing 6 or 96 year olds etc. etc. The imagination boggles and I WILL NOT consider reading despite your tongue stretching your cheek.

Replies:   Capt. Zapp
Capt. Zapp

@sejintenej

Please, please. OK so it is accurate but negates the whole purpose of tags.


As I said, this was posted as a tongue-in-cheek comment. If I were to use it, it would be in addition to the normal tags just so nobody could say they were not warned of a one or two paragraph scene which, in my opinion, did not need to get tagged for. Anything more than a brief, non explicit scene will be tagged for.

And just to clarify, it was the 6 year old pig being boffed by the 92 year old giraffe. :/

Replies:   sejintenej
sejintenej

@Capt. Zapp

And just to clarify, it was the 6 year old pig being boffed by the 92 year old giraffe.

LOLROFL This is going to hit me for the next week. Better than the Oscars

awnlee jawking

@sejintenej

Targeting cars with GB plates - yes because of the number of such cars seen massacring the speed limits or otherwise breaking very simple regulations - Brits are notorious for that, especially around Calais.


I have no personal experience, just newspaper reports plus the word of friends who made frequent trips to Europe on business.

AJ

Crumbly Writer

@REP

I warned readers something unexpected would occur in the next few chapters without specifying what would happen.

When I killed her off, one reader swore she would never read another of my stories and another said that it was sad but death was just part of life.

I always get dumped on whenever I kill off my protagonist, which is discouraging, but long term, the stories where it happens have ended up with my highest scores. So despite the initial displeasure/disappointment, the stories seem to be stronger for it. Those that end with the traditional 'happy ending' aren't quite as enduring (at least in my experience.

However, there's a way to spring surprises on people. You don't just 'dump' it on people. Instead, you prepare them for the eventual scene by using foreshadowing. That doesn't mean that you include spoilers, but you provide enough context that, when the surprise happens, readers think 'Ah, I see it now'.

One of my strongest sellers was the one where I killed off every character in the book, only to 'bring back' two in the epilogue. About a full third insisted that they couldn't finish the story and had to quit. But because to of the character development, especially relating to each of those deaths, those readers insisted they were eager for the sequel, and the sequel sold better and had higher scores than the original, despite the fact that characters continued to do (just not as frequently).

That's the secret to foreshadowing. Readers will still be disappointed when a favorite character dies the the story is essentially over forever, but given time to grieve for the characters, they'll accept the deaths as necessary, and cherish the story for the issues it dealt with. However, when you don't prepare the readers, that frustration bubbles over, and they don't have the sense of the deaths being both inevitable and necessary to the story and instead feel cheated.

It's not about 'protecting readers from things they don't like', it's about providing context so even the surprises make sense when they occur. In other words, those surprises can't come in from left field, or simply be 'dumped' on the reader.

Replies:   REP
Crumbly Writer

@REP

We all view things differently. I won't try to change your mind, but I don't see two people of different races engaged in a loving sexual relationship as being racist.

Just because two people supposedly love each other doesn't mean they can't also hate or despise them. Most families have the proverbial racist grandfather/grandchild, and consider how many mothers and fathers toss their children into the streets simply because they can't accept their declarations that they're homosexual. Does their love simply stop on that day, or are their expectations at war with their love for one another?

Having raised two interracial kids, I'd continually find myself reacting in unexpected ways, to my wife, the kids and their friends. Despite how much I learned about their culture and them as individuals, it's difficult turning off those stereotypes, which is often the first thing you turn to when something unexpected happens.

So yeah, you can be both racist and loving. It happens ALL the time!

Replies:   REP
Crumbly Writer

@awnlee jawking

And yet that creates an inconsistency in my opinions. I think readers would expect an 'interracial' story to involve sex between protagonists of different skin colours.

What's more, it's that inherent conflicts in relationships that drive stories. What's stronger than a love story with an undercurrent of open hostility, as readers wonder when the entire thing is going to explode? Introducing those types of conflict is the job of the writer. Mary Sue stories end up being fairly boring, because there's no real conflict, because we know that the Mary Sue character is always going to win.

The key, is to recognize that two people can both love each other while also hating what they represent in their lives, and play on that to illustrate the ongoing conflicts in readers' lives, so that the story feels 'real' and personal to them.

Crumbly Writer

@REP

Why would they think that is true in all cases? The story could be about an interracial couple in a non-racial conflict.

Read the damn codes! You don't tag the story because you're a racist, you code the story because the sexual games they're playing are based on sexual stereotypes.

Consider the white men who, despite all outward signs, love to have sex with tiny Asian women, who straight-laced white women who love the idea of dalliances with the proverbial big black men. Racial animus is common in many sexual fantasies, as it's how we, as human beings, cope with our conflicting natures.

Replies:   REP
Crumbly Writer

@Keet

Maybe good tags will get an author more readers but too many tags will certainly scare away some if what I read in some responses is correct.

I've always veered to under-using tags, rather than tagging absolutely everything that happens. There are times when you absolutely need to tag certain things, both because their central to the story, and also when they're not. And you're right, as an author, you need to consider your tags. I typically consider my tags the entire time I'm writing a story, and then again as I revise it, to ensure I tag whatever is necessary, and not tag anything that isn't.

Crumbly Writer

@REP

Some authors try to reach a balance between those two positions by considering the number of occurrences and overall effect those occurrences have on the plot. Some authors think they should warn the reader about everything a reader might consider a squick, while other authors only warn readers about what the author thinks is a squick.

One general rule of thumb, and supported by Lazeez, is that activity which isn't specifically shown in the story should not be tagged for. Thus the previous example of the guy describing the homosexual blowjob in the bathroom would NOT be tagged, because he simply mentions the blowjob, without describing the specific acts.

It's okay for characters to discuss squicks, but it's another to discuss the details as if it was a reader's main interest in the story. Just like with underaged sex, you can mention when someone has been exposed to something, but you can't play off the sexual interest behind it. Knowing the difference often lies in what to code for and what not to, as well as what can keep your story from being banned!

Replies:   REP
Crumbly Writer

@REP

First contact hasn't occurred that we know of other than what you read in National Enquirer. So since it hasn't happened in recorded history, what make you thing it is going to happen in the next 45 years. Is someone from outer space telling you they are coming or is someone making unsubstantiated predictions.

You're (StarFleet Carl) also assuming that 1) we'll eventually reach those habitable planets near us in the next 45 years, 2) that they'll contain intelligent life who are receptive to speaking with us, and 3) that we'll actually send a human being on those life-long missions, rather than a robotic camera. On top of all of those doubts, you're presuming all those pieces will fall together at a very precise point in the future, with no complications, hampering the effort.

Replies:   REP  sejintenej  StarFleet Carl
Crumbly Writer

@robberhands

According to the film the first contact will happen in 2067.

Ah, that completely flew over my head. I've got this annoying habit of thinking there's a difference between fact and fantasy.

Crumbly Writer

@Capt. Zapp

Too bad I can't avoid the 'noise' coming from certain vehicles as easily.

Yeah, I hate it when choppers drive by my house, because it makes concentrating on stories so difficult. 'D

Replies:   Capt. Zapp
Crumbly Writer

@Switch Blayde

It's the "well-hung black man/white woman who can't get enough of it" stories.

I'll believe that when you show me all the stories labeled SBM or MBM. The fact is those codes aren't about racism itself, but are based on the kinks people enjoy reveling in racist stereotypes. Those people choose to buy into the racist claims, and the stories ONLY feature the same tired racial stereotypes. Believe it or not, not all black men have 12" cocks, not all are thugs and not all of them deal drugs. If they included a little variation in their character descriptions, then maybe more people would take those stories seriously.

Crumbly Writer

@robberhands

If the interracial relationship between characters is just a 'normal' love affair, I wouldn't apply the 'interracial' tag.

I trust we ALL agree on this point, everyone's objection was your initial claim that you were free to define a tag 'however you chose'.

Crumbly Writer

@Ernest Bywater

The story type codes aside, all codes are sexual content codes.

While a lot of them are related to described sexual activity, not all codes are.

Not lecturing you, since you were arguing with robberhands, this response is echoing your sentiments rather than arguing with your point, Ernest.

It you (robberhands, or anyone else) examine the code declarations when you post a story, the sex-based codes are clearly labeled "Sex codes". There IS no "Racist codes", but the racist stereotyping is implied and it's generally understood that everyone understands the implications.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
awnlee jawking

@Crumbly Writer

I trust we ALL agree on this point


Interracial: Sexual partners of different races

The definition says nothing about 'excluding a normal love affair'.

AJ

Crumbly Writer

@Switch Blayde

If the interracial relationship between characters is just a 'normal' love affair, I wouldn't apply the 'interracial' tag.

I don't believe that's SOL's definition.

Sorry, Switch, but you're wrong on this count. As many others have pointed out, a 'normal' love affair between people of two different races doesn't rate an 'interracial' coding simply because a few avowed racists take offense at anything which isn't 'Lily White' (no offense to any Lily's in the field). It's only when it rises to a sexual kink, with little long-term interest in an actual relationship, that the term applies.

I'm with robberhands on this one. While I'll call him when he gets things wrong, I'll also call you on when you get things wrong too. (But, whenever I realize I get things wrong, I simply shut up and move on, rather than belabor the point since I'm already embarrassed enough.)

Replies:   Switch Blayde
Crumbly Writer

@Switch Blayde

Ernest, you don't see American TV commercials, but I've noticed recently that a significant number of them have interracial couples and mixed raced children. Knowing the advertising industry, this is not an accident. They are targeting a group of people. The story codes are used to target potential readers.

I've got many stories with characters from various racial backgrounds. I've yet to label a single one as 'interracial', simply because of the baggage that tag implies. I'd rather that readers, eager for those types of stories, would happen upon my stories accidentally and say 'Wow, a story that's similar to my own', rather than guessing 'I wonder if this is just another racial stereotype?'

Despite having raised an interracial family, I'd avoid ANY story with an interracial tag!

Replies:   awnlee jawking
Crumbly Writer

@Ernest Bywater

While it is possible the US ad companies are targeting different racial groups I think it's much more likely they're trying to avoid being targeted by the abusive leftists for not having different racial groups in their ads so they stick them in to avoid being accused of racism.

I think it's moved beyond that. The only ones who continue to insist on that interpretation are the outright racist and the political parties who cater to them. Instead, at least in the U.S., the various ad agencies have recognized that most families have at least one interracial coupling among them, so they're now targeting themselves in a way that'll appeal to ALL buyers, rather than continuing to insist that the other races simply don't exist other than as the proverbial bad guys who do evil things to decent white folk.

Replies:   Not_a_ID
Crumbly Writer

@robberhands

I pretty sure we don't have to argue about the definition of 'Big Breasts'. I also won't apply the 'Big Breasts' tag when a woman with big breasts in my stories has sex.

It's not a question of the code definition, it's a question when to apply a tag.

That's a fair assessment, but it's also one that most of us have failed on occasion, as we try to discern when to apply a tag and when not to. Sometimes we get called on it directly, but mostly we wonder 'why are my scores so low for this particular story?'

Crumbly Writer

@Switch Blayde

Since it wasn't a violent knock-down rape, I didn't include it. The readers didn't agree. To them, non-consent = rape.

The technical definition of rape has gradually evolved over time. At one point, it was physically impossible to rape a woman who you were married to. Now, in the #metoo generation, any type of forced sexual act is a rape, no matter how you try to justify the act to yourself. That's how President Clinton got into trouble, saying "I did not have sex with that women" because he (supposedly) never had dick-in-vagina intercourse with her. And look what trouble it landed him in parsing his terms so carefully.

Replies:   Switch Blayde
Crumbly Writer

@awnlee jawking

BBM isn't a SOL tag. However it's the code for Battambang Airport in Cambodia.

Hmm, I seem to remember it being one, but I suspect that's because the "black" tag is so often interpreted as referring to the stereotypical "Big Black Male" often portrayed in rape fantasies.

Switch Blayde

@Crumbly Writer

Sorry, Switch, but you're wrong on this count. As many others have pointed out, a 'normal' love affair between people of two different races doesn't rate an 'interracial'


SOL definition:

Interracial = Sexual partners of different races


So if that love affair includes sex, it's interracial per SOL's definition.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Capt. Zapp

@Crumbly Writer

Yeah, I hate it when choppers drive by my house, because it makes concentrating on stories so difficult. 'D


I was referring to the 'thumping' coming from vehicles with more audio amplifiers than most concerts. You know, the ones you hear coming three or more blocks away and, if they pull up next to you at a traffic light, you can't hear your own music even if you turn it up full.

Crumbly Writer

@Switch Blayde

SOL definition:

Interracial = Sexual partners of different races

So if that love affair includes sex, it's interracial per SOL's definition.

Maybe it's just me, but I don't know of anyone who searches for 'interracial' stories unless they're searching for a particular type of story. Few come on the site saying 'I wonder if I can find any Georgian/South Guinean combinations'. As such, I won't label a story with a single black character a black story whether that character has sex or not.

Replies:   REP  Switch Blayde
robberhands
Updated:

@Crumbly Writer

.. everyone's objection was your initial claim that you were free to define a tag 'however you chose'.

Even if you and others purport a hundred more times I made a definition for 'interracial' it doesn't make the claim any truer. I never made an old, new, or different definition for the tag code 'interracial' on SOL. If you want to prove me wrong, show me where I stated a definition.

ETA: For fairness reasons I added 'and others'.

Ernest Bywater

@Crumbly Writer

Not lecturing you, since you were arguing with robberhands, this response is echoing your sentiments rather than arguing with your point, Ernest.

It you (robberhands, or anyone else) examine the code declarations when you post a story, the sex-based codes are clearly labeled "Sex codes". There IS no "Racist codes", but the racist stereotyping is implied and it's generally understood that everyone understands the implications.


CW, I suggest you go back and read what I said in that post and look at the code definitions. In the sentence of mine you quote I was stating a fact, not providing an argument or sentiment. In the second paragraph I covered the Interracial code and pointed it it involved sex. In the whole post I deliberately avoided the racist aspects.

There are many codes that have no sexual content and aspects and when you lodge a story in the wizard if you code it as no sex a lot of the code definitions are no longer available to you because they are used only for sex stories. Obvious non-sex codes are in the groups Story Types, Science Fiction, Paranormal, Other - while those codes are not sexual activity codes they can apply to stories without sexual activity or with sexual activity as they relate to the story plot and type.

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands

@Ernest Bywater

Not lecturing you, since you were arguing with robberhands...

I just like to add, that so far this thread has been one of the rare occasions where Ernest and I didn't argue.

REP

@Crumbly Writer

you prepare them for the eventual scene by using foreshadowing


in this instance foreshadowing was not an option. The wife went out with her parents to look at baby furniture. On the way home a drunk driver hit them and killed all 3. Yes I could have picked a different means of death, but this seemed more realistic to what happens to us on occasion. It was extremely damaging to the MC, and his mental state set up scenes for support by his friends and his subsequent recovery.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
REP

@Crumbly Writer

If you check the context, the passage was to counter Robberhands statements. I did not intend it to exclude other combinations.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
REP

@Crumbly Writer

Read the damn codes!


I suggest you read the post comment that I was responding to before you go off half-cocked. My post had nothing to do with the codes. Awnlee's stated:

I think readers would expect an 'interracial' story to involve sex between protagonists of different skin colours.


Why would an interracial story have to be about protagonist having sex. They could be friends, allies, or strangers. Why protagonists?

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
REP

@Crumbly Writer

Once again, read the damn post a person is replying about and consider what the poster is replying to before shooting off your mouth. My post had nothing to do with what yours is saying.

REP

@Crumbly Writer

Since you appear to be addressing Starfleet Carl's post, why didn't you address it to him?

REP

@Crumbly Writer

Maybe it's just me, but I don't know of anyone who searches for 'interracial' stories


I seem to recall you saying an author should add codes applicable to the content of the story. I sounds like you are now saying the author shouldn't add codes for stories the readers won't want to search for.

Make up you mind.

I agree with SB. If a story contains scenes with a mixed race couple having sex, add the code. It doesn't matter it they are a loving couple or two people who hate each others guts. They are having sex so add the code. It also doesn't matter if the sex is voluntary or rape.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@REP

If a story contains scenes with a mixed race couple having sex, add the code. It doesn't matter it they are a loving couple or two people who hate each others guts. They are having sex so add the code. It also doesn't matter if the sex is voluntary or rape.


I'd add the caveat that in the situation described it would have to be a graphic sex scene. Just having two people of different skin colours having a relationship with no on-screen sex wouldn't justify the code in my mind, unless it was the racial difference aspect that was what brought them together.

Example, person goes out looking for a person for sex and is only looking for people of another racial group qualifies, while if the racial group has no bearing on the meeting and relationship it doesn't qualify.

Replies:   REP
REP

@Ernest Bywater

no on-screen sex


Maybe I'm reading something into you post, but I did say:

If a story contains scenes with a mixed race couple having sex


and I agree with you - no on-screen sex, no code.

Switch Blayde

@Crumbly Writer

The technical definition of rape has gradually evolved over time.


I'm posting on SOL so I'm using SOL's definition.

Consensual sex with a minor is legally rape, but on SOL it's not even non-consent.

Switch Blayde

@Crumbly Writer

Maybe it's just me, but I don't know of anyone who searches for 'interracial' stories unless they're searching for a particular type of story.


But that's putting your own stereotype on it.

In fairness, that's probably how the interracial story code came about. But the site has evolved since it's early days.

JohnBobMead

@Crumbly Writer

BBM


SOL doesn't have such a code; and normally, the code used would be BBC, if SOL had one specifically for that fetish, as that is the term used by those seeking it out elsewhere.

On SOL, you'd have to use the combination of "Black Male" and "Size" to inform those seeking/avoiding that fetish.

It is a stereotype. The existence of stereotypes, tropes, what ever you want to call them, is why we have tags in the first place. Not all stereotypes are racist.

Consider the "Shushing Librarian" stereotype, for an example relevant to my profession; one on which the field is frequently involved in acrimonious dispute, as some of us embrace it and others loathe all that it represents.

That said, I will concede, that in regard to this particular fetish, a stereotype of physical proportions and interpersonal behavior on the part of one racial type/gender combination to a different racial type/gender combination is so clearly tied to it that it would be very hard to argue that it isn't a racist term.

Not_a_ID

@REP

The only way I see someone getting Racist out of Lazeez' definition is if they believe sex between two people of different races is a Racist act.


Backwards, it is likely to trigger the racists, so you hotcode the story so they can avoid being triggered.

sejintenej

@Crumbly Writer

REP

First contact hasn't occurred that we know of [edited] what make you thing it is going to happen in the next 45 years. Is someone from outer space telling you they are coming or is someone making unsubstantiated predictions.

Crumbly Writer replied:
You're (StarFleet Carl) also assuming that 1) we'll eventually reach those habitable planets near us in the next 45 years, 2) that they'll contain intelligent life who are receptive to speaking with us, and 3) that we'll actually send a human being on those life-long missions, rather than a robotic camera


There is so much yakyak that in fact there may have been some contact already but the politicians are terrified of public consternation because we could not defend ourselves.

Look back to when you were in college and knowledge at that time compared to now. Life is changing increasingly rapidly and the change is accelerating.

Intelligent life on another planet? Given that there are trillions of stars in our universe and there is a risk that each one has planets and a ;percentage of those planets will be in the goldilocks zone. The odds of intelligent live sound pretty good. That is our universe - what about the other ones?

Replies:   Dominions Son
awnlee jawking

@Crumbly Writer

raised an interracial family


Is that an accepted American usage of the word interracial?

In British English, I would say that Barack Obama was a mixed-race President, not an interracial President.

AJ

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@awnlee jawking

In British English, I would say that Barack Obama was a mixed-race President, not an interracial President.


he was a mixed race child born in an interracial relationships, and while they lived together it was an interracial family.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@Ernest Bywater

Oops, I should have gone for a different quote: "Having raised two interracial kids".

I wouldn't use 'interracial family' - IMO interracial requires two parties but family is singular so I'd use 'mixed race' family instead.

AJ

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@awnlee jawking

I wouldn't use 'interracial family' - IMO interracial requires two parties but family is singular so I'd use 'mixed race' family instead.


Normally, I would too, but I was commenting from the US view point and terminology.

To prove my point if you read my story Mack you'll see I've a huge number of scene involving people of different racial backgrounds while I rarely mention that point. The main character, Mack, ends up with two wives who are Aboriginals (who are dark skinned) but while I mention their Aboriginal heritage at various points where it's relevant I never use the term interracial or view it that way as I view them as three people of similar ages - end of story.

Not_a_ID
Updated:

@Ernest Bywater


While it is possible the US ad companies are targeting different racial groups I think it's much more likely they're trying to avoid being targeted by the abusive leftists for not having different racial groups in their ads so they stick them in to avoid being accused of racism.


It pretty much is this one, various activist groups started making noise about the lack of diversity in both television programming in general and advertising as well. They concluded it was "too white" (and too straight) in proportion to the population. So they started threatening boycotts.

So for the past 6-ish years producers have been very careful to make sure their work is "sufficiently inclusive" now. Which means any (new) show with an ensemble cast pretty much must have at least two(preferably more) racial minorities in the cast and one character needs to demonstrate that they're probably homosexual.

Mixed race couples in advertising is basically their catering to the Millenial/SJW demographic and going "see, we're socially progressive and like diversity too, please don't boycott us." As those also mean they don't need to worry about stations favoring the ad with the white couple over "the minority version." (Because there probably is a group somewhere that is likely to track that at some point in time, and the advertiser doesn't want to be portrayed negatively for something they couldn't control)

Replies:   awnlee jawking
Not_a_ID

@Switch Blayde

Since it wasn't a violent knock-down rape, I didn't include it. The readers didn't agree. To them, non-consent = rape.

For a growing number of them, this includes morning, "wake up sex" as well. No explicit consent was given, thus it is rape in their book.

awnlee jawking

@Not_a_ID

In the UK, amongst the metropolitan elite, it's considered brave and edgy to have a POC cast in the role of a white character, but it's considered racist to have a white person playing a POC character :(

AJ

Not_a_ID
Updated:

@Crumbly Writer


While it is possible the US ad companies are targeting different racial groups I think it's much more likely they're trying to avoid being targeted by the abusive leftists for not having different racial groups in their ads so they stick them in to avoid being accused of racism.



I think it's moved beyond that. The only ones who continue to insist on that interpretation are the outright racist and the political parties who cater to them. Instead, at least in the U.S., the various ad agencies have recognized that most families have at least one interracial coupling among them, so they're now targeting themselves in a way that'll appeal to ALL buyers, rather than continuing to insist that the other races simply don't exist other than as the proverbial bad guys who do evil things to decent white folk.


It is a little bit of both. I was a "news hound" while this stuff was going on during Obama's first term. It started being done because activist groups were threatening boycotts over lack of inclusion for minority groups.

It continues being done because the execs remember the threats that made them start in the first place. That and they have discovered the hard core racist/bigot portion of the market is nothing for them to be concerned about losing, or trying to re-obtain.

So the practice continues in its new form because there currently is no profit motive for them to change it.

But the SJW types are likewise remaining oblivious to the whole thing about "no market 'of sufficient size' exists" with respect to white, racist, bigoted homophobes in the United States to make it worth the time of advertisers to pursue them(even before needing to make a calculus against potential lost sales of being caught trying to cater to such groups).

I think that by itself speaks volumes about the status of racial views in America. The White Supremacist is a complete non-factor on the national stage. They're scary enough in person, but that's about as far as their influence goes.

robberhands

@awnlee jawking

In the UK, amongst the metropolitan elite, it's considered brave and edgy to have a POC cast in the role of a white character, but it's considered racist to have a white person playing a POC character :(


Definition of "POC" from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press:

POC noun [ C or plural ]

short for "person of colour" or "people of colour"; used to refer to a person who is/people who are not racially white

Replies:   Not_a_ID
Not_a_ID

@robberhands

Yeah, I had to pause on that for a bit, but I had encountered "person of color" before so I managed to parse it out with the rest of the context.

richardshagrin

@Not_a_ID

person of color


Most "white" people are various shades of pink, and both white and pink are colors. Would that make green aliens a person of color? Green is also a color.

Replies:   sejintenej
awnlee jawking

@Not_a_ID

Some descendants of Caribbean immigrants consider the term 'person of colour' to be derogatory. And yet it seems to be on-trend amongst the Twitterati, especially some agents and publishers who positively discriminate in favour of POC literature (provided it's not written by a white author).

AJ

sejintenej

@richardshagrin

Most "white" people are various shades of pink, and both white and pink are colors. Would that make green aliens a person of color?

Under apartheid Chinese were treated as coloured (= mixed race under their definition of the word) but Japanese were treated as white!!!!!

Switch Blayde

@awnlee jawking

a POC cast in the role of a white character


I don't remember who it was, but a black actor wanted to play James Bond. He said his color shouldn't matter. *shakes head*

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@Switch Blayde

There was much speculation, and no little metropolitan support for, Idris Elba to be the next James Bond. I don't think he positively agitated for it though. IIRC Daniel Craig agreed to another film, despite intimating it was time to quit, so the whole question's on ice.

AJ

Replies:   Dominions Son
Switch Blayde

I don't remember what the talk was about, but they were interviewing a black basketball player. The interviewer brought up baseball and the black basketball player said: "That's a white man's game."

First of all, I wouldn't be surprised if there are more Latinos in baseball than whites (and they should be insulted by the comment). And when you add the Latinos with the blacks, I'm almost sure they outnumber the whites.

Second, it was a racist remark. Imagine interviewing a white athlete who said about basketball: "That's a black man's game."

Dominions Son

@sejintenej

Intelligent life on another planet? Given that there are trillions of stars in our universe and there is a risk that each one has planets and a ;percentage of those planets will be in the goldilocks zone. The odds of intelligent live sound pretty good. That is our universe - what about the other ones?


Assuming we aren't alone in the universe, and I don't believe that we are.

Assuming that some of that other intelligent life has developed interstellar travel.

The odds are against such being relatively close by.

We are in a relatively out of the way area of our galaxy. Why would they come here?

Given that they clearly have much more advanced technology, what could we possible have that they would come this far to get?

Switch Blayde

@Dominions Son

what could we possible have that they would come this far to get?


Stories on SOL.

Dominions Son

@awnlee jawking

There was much speculation, and no little metropolitan support for, Idris Elba to be the next James Bond.


I know it is a break with the books, but the way the movies have changed actors over the years almost gives the impression that "James Bond" is just a code name and several people have held the position over the years.

Given that that is my view of it, a black "James Bond" wouldn't bother me that much.

What would be funny is if they did a female Bond.

awnlee jawking

@Dominions Son

What would be funny is if they did a female Bond.


Funnier than a female Dr Who?

AJ

awnlee jawking

@Dominions Son

We are in a relatively out of the way area of our galaxy. Why would they come here?


They likely originate from an older solar system than our own and IIRC, that means further from the galactic centre. Their easiest and most beneficial route of progression would be to work their way inwards along their spiral arm rather than crossing between spiral arms, and if we happen to lie en route ...

Given that they clearly have much more advanced technology, what could we possible have that they would come this far to get?


They'd probably keep the hell away from us because we're such selfish, uncivilised bastards.

In fact I postulate that any 'hello' signal they transmit will require the processing power of sentient artificial intelligences to interpret, since a society controlled by such machine intelligences will surely be less irrational than us glorified apes.

They might actually be transmitting such a signal at the moment, but we're too dumb to recognise it.

AJ

StarFleet Carl

@Crumbly Writer

that we'll actually send a human being on those life-long missions, rather than a robotic camera. On top of all of those doubts, you're presuming all those pieces will fall together at a very precise point in the future, with no complications, hampering the effort.


We didn't (or won't) send a human out. The Vulcans are (or will be) simply passing by and going to ignore us.

Apropos of nothing to do with this post, did I end up sending you the apology for misunderstanding something that I wrote and posted the other evening, or am I just thinking I sent that to you, because I really don't remember, and I can't find it posted here?

richardshagrin

@Dominions Son

a female Bond

James Blonde.

REP

@Dominions Son

We are in a relatively out of the way area of our galaxy. Why would they come here?


What if they were even further out and decided to just stop by on their way to the center of the galaxy. :)

Crumbly Writer

@REP

in this instance foreshadowing was not an option. The wife went out with her parents to look at baby furniture. On the way home a drunk driver hit them and killed all 3. Yes I could have picked a different means of death, but this seemed more realistic to what happens to us on occasion. It was extremely damaging to the MC, and his mental state set up scenes for support by his friends and his subsequent recovery.

Yeah, in that situation, the 'surprise' is difficult to foreshadow, but even then, I'd foreshadow many of the elements the character responds to afterwards. Thus I'd list the various things that ticked the character off about his wife and her family, as well as the things that endeared them. That way, while the initial shock is surprising, the character's response to it isn't. By basing his response to it on things you've already foreshadowed, it fits into a 'comfortable' pattern in the story, and it makes for a more seamless transition.

Like when I kill off my protagonists, you'll always get flak for it, but if you prepare for the big shock, the story will hold up over time and the one event won't have readers turning away.

Replies:   REP
Crumbly Writer

@REP

If you check the context, the passage was to counter Robberhands statements. I did not intend it to exclude other combinations.

Understood. That's happens here so often, it's almost an understanding here. We often respond to others, rather than speaking about the topic writ large, so it's easy to take the responses out of context.

Crumbly Writer

@REP

Why would an interracial story have to be about protagonist having sex. They could be friends, allies, or strangers. Why protagonists?

Simple assumption. My stories usually revolve around the protagonists, but many author's revolve around the antagonist, or even the many secondary characters.

But I think we've established our positions, and that you did NOT intend to redefine the story tag, so I'll drop all of my objections.

REP

@Crumbly Writer

Ah, but in this case the couple were perfect fit for each other. They formed a team to face life and had no significant problem with each other. There was no in-law problem either.

We talk about the afterlife. In Buddhism, the afterlife is a new level of existence. I adapted Buddhist beliefs with other concepts to define a series of levels. A person must learn a series of lessons at each level before they can move to the next higher level. The concept is a supporting detail, not a significant part of the story.

The couple were on Level 3 and they had a mental link. When she died, she was moved to level 4; even though she was not ready for existence on that level. Part of a subplot. Their link was still in place and since they were living on different levels (i.e., death is not the end of a person's life), so they could still 'talk' with each other after her death. A key element in the main plot. He was devastated until their link was reestablished.

There is far more to the story, but I won't spoil it for anyone who wants to read it. I wrote Chocolateen and the Ancient Abilities part 1. While writing Ancient Abilities, I decided to turn the two stories into cross-over stories. The recommended order in which to read the 4 stories is Chocolateen 1, Ancient Abilities 1, Chocolateen 2, Ancient Abilities 2.

Keet
Updated:

@REP

and @Dominion Son

so who would you get to write the guidelines.


Perhaps Laz can aggregate multiple submissions of guidelines if multiple authors contribute their thoughts. I have seen good thoughts on how to set a sensible set of tags.

Laz created the codes and it is the authors that create the interpretations that seem to clash. I suggested the guidelines to minimize the room for different interpretations.

Replies:   REP  robberhands
REP

@Keet

Laz created the codes and it is the authors that create the interpretations that seem to clash.


Just to clarify what is being discussed. We are not talking about the code definitions. We are talking about when a code should be included when posting a story.

We authors can't seem to agree on when a specific code should be added for specific scenes. The thoughts submitted by authors would as contradictory as the opinions expressed in the Forum during the past few days.

Basically the decision of whether a code should be included is subjective. Authors will do the same thing they currently do, which is add the code if they think it is needed.

A guideline might have a small influence on a few authors use of the codes assuming of course they bother to read the guidelines.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
robberhands
Updated:

@Keet

It's relatively easy to agree on the definition of a code. The applicability of a code for a story is an entirely different problem, mainly because of the dual purpose the codes serve - warning as well as advertisement of story content.

For instance, it's easy to agree on the definition of 'anal sex', but warning and advertising are following diverging principles. To effectively warn a reader, the warning tag should be applied even if a descriptive 'anal sex' scene only happens once in a long story. OTOH, I don't think it's appropriate to 'lure' a reader who is searching for 'anal sex stories' by tagging the one scene within a 100k+ words story.

Ernest Bywater

@REP

We authors can't seem to agree on when a specific code should be added for specific scenes.


Lazeez has provided clear guidelines on when to apply codes as well as what the codes mean at:

when to apply at:

https://storiesonline.net/author/posting_guidelines.php

which says:

Correct, Precise Codes:
Correct codes are extremely important. Most people use the codes to decide whether they want to read a story or not. The more precise your codes are the better your scores will be. If you put the wrong codes or you miss some codes or even put extra codes, you risk the chance of people retaliating by giving you low scores.

For example, if you put the romance code in your story's codes, while your story is a rape story, then you'll attract those people that are looking for romance and when they find the rape in there then they'll be shocked and the result is usually a vote of 1. And by not labeling the rape, you won't attract those interested in reading about a rape who would give your story a higher score. So it's all about attracting the right audience.

Precise coding is also important. Excessive coding is bad. If something is mentioned in the story but not described, then it shouldn't coded for. Anything that happens offscreen shouldn't be coded for. For example, if a woman gets raped, and the story doesn't contain the rape scene, only a mention that the woman was raped, then the story doesn't need the 'Rape' code. Use your judgement and try to see it from the readers point. If you see a code in the story what would it mean to you? Code accordingly.


............................

code meanings at:

https://storiesonline.net/docs/code_faq.php

............................

He even has a clear statement on the age issue at:

https://storiesonline.net/h/58/what-kind-of-stories-can-i-post

You can post almost anything. We have one restriction: Characters under 14 years old can't be sexual or sexualized. Characters under 14 can't masturbate, can't be described nude and can't participate in any explicitly described sexual manner.

If you must have those characters, then anything sexual to do with them must be described in a clinical manner. Think how they would do it on public television. So never in any sexualized manner or salacious descriptions.

In that vein, you can't have fictitious characters that are supposedly older and yet somehow behave or look like underage children. That will get you booted off the site.


.......................................

Hopefully the above will help clarify a lot of the author concerns expressed lately

robberhands

@Ernest Bywater

I've no problem with the definition of the codes and yes, Lazeez has provided a guideline. I assume, if he'd have wanted ironclad rules, then he'd stated it. I view the omission of tags which are by definition aplicable but have no relevance to the story as following the guideline. I don't need to warn readers of 'oral sex' in a sex story as well as I don't use the tag to lure readers with a special interest in 'oral sex' toward my stories.

Crumbly Writer

@Ernest Bywater

If you must have those characters, then anything sexual to do with them must be described in a clinical manner. Think how they would do it on public television. So never in any sexualized manner or salacious descriptions.

That 'test' will produce considerably different results depending on whether we're discussion American public television, British television, or cable channels. There hasn't been a consistent 'broadcasting standard' for a very long time!

REP
Updated:

@Ernest Bywater


Lazeez has provided clear guidelines on when to apply codes as well as what the codes mean at


Nope! Those guidelines are far too generic. They are also mainly about the accuracy of the code matching the scene.

Authors deal with the specifics of scenes when determining if a code needs to be added. The accuracy of the code is important, but the number of similar scenes and the effect of those scene(s) have on the overall story also have to be taken under consideration.

If you have a 100K word story and one 300 word scene with three people having sex and the sex has little to nothing to do with the plot, does the story warrant the Group Sex tag? I'd say NO.

If you have a 25K word story with a dozen 300 word scenes with three people having sex, does the story warrant the Group Sex tag? I'd say YES.

The point where the number of sex scenes result in me switching my NO to Yes, is a subjective decision on my part. Each of us must make that decision for our stories. Lazeez guidelines do not provide guidance regarding that type of decision.

We also need to keep in mind that coding a story for every act and type of scene in a story is not the way to go, especially in a long story, for you would end up with too many codes.

As Lazeez said in those guidelines:

Use your judgement and try to see it from the readers point. If you see a code in the story what would it mean to you? Code accordingly.


Each of us judges a story differently and we don't agree in many instances.

Replies:   richardshagrin  Keet
richardshagrin

@REP

Group Sex

If the partners are in the dark, it could be grope sex.

Replies:   REP  Crumbly Writer
REP

@richardshagrin

or they don't know what to do

sejintenej
Updated:

@Dominions Son


What would be funny is if they did a female Bond


I don't know about your experiences but I have come across females I would never want to meet in a dark alley.

All three that I am thinking about were/are very attractive but don't look dangerous. One was the reigning UK female contact karate champion whist the other two are handling such weights and movements in the gym that I expect the floor to fail under them.

I also came across several who were more than competent with a rifle (I was never into handguns)

awnlee jawking

@Dominions Son

Felix Leiter changed skin colour. Perhaps James Bond could self-identify as female (yet keep his functional wedding tackle) to qualify for the Labour Party's all-women transgender-friendly shortlists.

AJ

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Switch Blayde

@Dominions Son

What would be funny is if they did a female Bond.


"What's your name?"

"Bond, Jamie Bond. What's yours?"

"Dicky Galore."

"You're a cocky chap."

Crumbly Writer

@richardshagrin

If the partners are in the dark, it could be grope sex.

Or the best of all, good groping, gooey group sex!

Michael Loucks

@Switch Blayde

"What's your name?"

"Bond, Jamie Bond. What's yours?"

"Dicky Galore."

"You're a cocky chap."


Or:

"Bond, Jamie Bond."

"Dick Trickle!"

"Pass."

(NASCAR driver whose parents should be beaten for naming their kid Richard Trickle)

Crumbly Writer
Updated:

@awnlee jawking


Felix Leiter changed skin colour. Perhaps James Bond could self-identify as female (yet keep his functional wedding tackle) to qualify for the Labour Party's all-women transgender-friendly shortlists.


A better plot, would have James' illegitimate daughter going into his field with a chip on her shoulder, based on his inability to bond with anyone, despite how often he sweet-talks information out of people. Whenever you're overly nice, she's likely to slice your balls off. Instant conflict which taints any relationships across the entire story.

Will she murder M at a moment's notice? Who knows, but they keep hiring her, because she's so efficient at surprising, killing and disposing of bodies in creative ways.

Switch Blayde

@Michael Loucks

"Dick Trickle!"


It was the male Pussy Galore.

James Bond/Pussy Galore
Jamie Bond/Dicky Galore

Dominions Son

@Switch Blayde

:D That's exactly the sort of humor I was thinking of.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@Dominions Son

:D That's exactly the sort of humor I was thinking of.


They could have a guy named Dick Pussey who was a more active type.

Capt. Zapp

@Michael Loucks

(NASCAR driver whose parents should be beaten for naming their kid Richard Trickle)


Not as bad as the Richard I knew with the surname 'Legg'

BlacKnight

There's a former New Hampshire Congressman by the name of Richard Swett. He, to all appearances voluntarily, goes by "Dick". Really.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@BlacKnight

There's a former New Hampshire Congressman by the name of Richard Swett. He, to all appearances voluntarily, goes by "Dick". Really.


Could be worse, his last name could be Swell instead of Swett.

Replies:   StarFleet Carl
StarFleet Carl

@Dominions Son

Could be worse, his last name could be Swell instead of Swett.


It gets worse.

Guy I knew was named Richard Cox. So yes, he was Dick Cox.

And even worse - his dad was named Harold Long Cox.

This is NOT the same Harry Long Cox I knew, but ... yeah, what the HELL were his parents thinking. (And of course, he's a coach!)
http://www.nwitimes.com/sports/high-school/boys-basketball/where-are-they-now-harold-cox/article_a9d20fda-1821-5eb1-a430-75a7c0e65636.html

Replies:   Not_a_ID
Switch Blayde

I don't know if this is true, but it happened in a movie about a young Abe Lincoln. As a lawyer, he was questioning a guy on the stand whose name was John Cass.

He asked the man if he was ever called Jack. The man said yes. So Abe Lincoln said, "So you're a Jack Cass." (jackass)

JohnBobMead

@Switch Blayde

I strongly suspect anyone doing that in a modern court of law would be reprimanded by the Judge.

Crumbly Writer

@Switch Blayde

He asked the man if he was ever called Jack. The man said yes. So Abe Lincoln said, "So you're a Jack Cass." (jackass)

Abe was always quick with a turn of phrase, as well as a master of creating proverb-inspired anecdotes to illustrate points, which frequently caused complex discussions to grind to a halt as the various parties had to figure out WTH he was talking about.

Keet

@REP

... coding a story for every act and type of scene in a story is not the way to go, ...

And that is the main reason for starting this topic. Multitudes of codes do nothing to tell me what kind of story it will be other then to pass it because of inconclusiveness (yes I had to look that word up to see how to spell it, my English knowledge is mostly from IT-tech and reading SOL).
Reading all responses has made made one thing very clear: all authors that gave good advise for good category coding are the same authors that practice good category coding. I guess the authors that throw in massive amounts of codes will be the same that will not bother themselves with reading, much less following guidelines.

Ernest Bywater

I can't provide a good ratio, but I would expect in many stories (especially those with a lot of sex scenes in them) the number of codes is likely to go up with the story size. Take my 2 stories Ed's New Life is much sex with 12 codes for a story of 114,900 words while Power Tool is also much sex with 31 codes for 268,100 words while covering a much wider range of codes since it also has some scifi elements.

In light of the above you need to balance the number of codes against the story size and the genre it's in.

Replies:   Keet
Keet
Updated:

@Ernest Bywater


In light of the above you need to balance the number of codes against the story size and the genre it's in.


The larger the story the more different things happen, so yes, a longer story is more likely to need more codes. But... long or short, each story has a certain "main flow", the general subject of the story. Going beyond 20-25 codes it seems that codes are duplicating, getting so closely related that one of two should suffice. For example your story "Power Tool": Hypnosis and Mind Control. Would leaving out the Hypnosis code lessen the description of the story? The same for Mult and Group Sex. And doesn't Ma/ft imply Heterosexual?

On the other hand you list Lesbian but no Fa/Fa code. Why is that? A Fa/Fa code could specify between Fa and Ft with a single code.

I read this story a long, long time ago so I can't remember the exact contents but with some codes omitted I would still get a good general idea of the story.

I am not complaining, you code your stories very well compared to some other authors. I just state it as examples to clarify. I don't think being a long story in itself justifies a higher ratio.

Now the story Genre is a different kind of beast because it most likely requires more (warning) codes when there is more sex. Still, when there is a Ma/Ma code I don't need another code Gay to know it is most likely not my kind of story.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@Keet

For example your story "Power Tool": Hypnosis and Mind Control. Would leaving out the Hypnosis code lessen the description of the story?


Lessen the description, no. However, it might narrow the audience the story reaches.

Some readers look for mind control stories, some look for hypnosis specifically.

Between those two tags, if you were going to drop one, drop mind control unless the story includes both hypnosis and non-hypnosis mind control.

Generally speaking more specific tags are better than less specific tags.

A reader who is looking for mind control, may not find a story tagged with just hypnosis in a category search, but in the new or updated stories list, they will understand that hypnosis is mind control.

A reader looking specifically for hypnosis stories is likely to bypass a story tagged as just mind control, n o mater how or where they come across the story.

The tags aren't just about about efficiently describing the story, they are about accurately defining the audience you are writing for.

Still, when there is a Ma/Ma code I don't need another code Gay to know it is most likely not my kind of story.


On category search, premium members can both include and exclude tags, and all member can specify tag exclusions to apply to all story lists in their member profiles.

It's more efficient to just exclude Gay than to have to individually exclude Ma/Ma, Ma/Mt, Mt/Mt

In the end, it is a balancing act and there is no set of objective rules for how to tag a story that will give you an objectively optimal result in all cases.

You need to consider both how users looking for specific fetishes use the tags to include stories and how uses looking to avoid squicks use the tags to exclude stories.

Replies:   Centaur  REP
Centaur

@Dominions Son

On category search, premium members can both include and exclude tags, and all member can specify tag exclusions to apply to all story lists in their member profiles.


Where? It's not in the free Accounts

Replies:   John Demille
John Demille

@Centaur

It's not in the free Accounts


No, it's a premier feature. DS said premium members.

Replies:   Centaur
Centaur

@John Demille

I read "all members", to mean ALL members including free. Read past the comma.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Not_a_ID

@StarFleet Carl

It gets worse.

Guy I knew was named Richard Cox. So yes, he was Dick Cox.

And even worse - his dad was named Harold Long Cox.


I think I will simply settle for laughing whenever I stop at the Richard Pingle Travel Center in Madison, Wisconsin.

REP

@Dominions Son

The tags aren't just about about efficiently describing the story, they are about accurately defining the audience you are writing for.


I would phrase it, helping the audience you are writing for to find your story, which is what I think you intended.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@Centaur

@Centaur

It's not in the free Accounts

No, it's a premier feature. DS said premium members.
Replies: Centaur

Centaur
4/30/2018, 10:04:25 PM

@John Demille

I read "all members", to mean ALL members including free. Read past the comma.


I thought the category exclusion in the account preferences was available to free members, but I was wrong, it's another premium feature.

Dominions Son

@REP

I would phrase it, helping the audience you are writing for to find your story, which is what I think you intended.


No, my intended meaning was broader than that.

Switch Blayde

Your approach is so different than mine. But I don't read a lot of stories on SOL. I can go months without reading anything.

I prefer short stories to really long ones. In fact, when I search for a story I set a size limit, like 200K-400K max. My experience is the long stories get boring even if they start out good. Instead of writing towards a plot's climax, they just go on and on.

Category Search is my way of finding stories. For that, inclusion of codes is critical. If I search on a code and it's not there, I don't find the story. So from that perspective, many codes is important (even though, as an author, I don't do that).

Replies:   Keet
robberhands

I'm pretty sure most authors on this forum are readers as well. As a reader, I've to sort through the same mess of tags and codes as you to find a story I may like.

Of course, it would be much easier if every author would apply the tags in the same manner. That will never happen, though. As different as the stories are, as different are the authors and their view on things. To make the coding of stories uniform we'd need one person to apply the codes to every story on SOL, and I wager, many authors would rather pull their stories than allowing someone else to apply the tags.

Replies:   Keet
Keet

@Switch Blayde

Your approach is so different than mine.

I know, I'm not the typical reader if there is such a thing. I too use the category search which makes the codes important but not while deciding about a specific story, just for searching. That's also why I mentioned needing a premium membership because without it searching is lacking severely. Now if Laz adds some more payment methods I'm willing to pay for the past 2 years and going forward.

Keet

@robberhands

I agree. Since the start of this topic I am beginning to accept that uniform coding is never going to happen. I must say that the system in itself is better then anything else I can think of.

robberhands
Updated:

"I feel like I was tricked into reading a harem story..."

That's a part of a comment a reader just made in regards to the story I'm currently posting on SOL. It represents exactly one of the main problems authors are facing when coding a story. From my point of view, the reader's complaint is understandable because their are elements of a harem in my story, although I did not apply this tag. However, if I would have applied the 'Harem' tag, I'm certain readers searching for such stories would feel tricked as well.

Replies:   awnlee jawking  REP
awnlee jawking

@robberhands

However, if I would have applied the 'Harem' tag, I'm certain readers searching for such stories would feel tricked as well.


Consider this faint praise, since my own tagging is far from perfect, but in my opinion your story doesn't read like a harem story so I think you made the right decision ;)

AJ

REP

@robberhands

As an author all you can do is code the story as you see it. Readers may view the story differently. As long as you added the necessary codes and didn't add codes just to attract readers, you've done the best you can.

Replies:   AmigaClone
AmigaClone

@REP

The only restriction to your advice is to be aware of the current maximum limit of 50 tags for a story - a restriction created in part by the number of tags in several of the stories written by the author of the story referred to in the OP.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@AmigaClone

The only restriction to your advice is to be aware of the current maximum limit of 50 tags for a story


Most authors shouldn't need to worry about it. If you aren't going overboard with the tags to start with, anything less than an epic novel, on the order of War and Peace, The Lord of the Rings, or Battle Field Earth, shouldn't come close to the limit.

There are only around 180 some tags in total. If you are using more than a quarter of them on anything less than an epic novel (200K + words) your story is probably a bit unfocused.

REP

@Dominions Son

Or it's all sex.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@REP

Or it's all sex.


Even if it only used the sex related codes, it would have to be an epic novel length stroke story to deliver on that many codes.

Replies:   JohnBobMead
JohnBobMead

@Dominions Son

Even if it only used the sex related codes, it would have to be an epic novel length stroke story to deliver on that many codes.


Challenge... declined.

There was a momentary consideration of seeing just how fast one could run through all those codes. While still having some semblance of being a story.

My qualms about characterization and plot development are as nothing to my qualms about writing sex scenes, so all of you are spared.

No need to express your gratitude. I'll take that as a given. ;)

mcguy101
Updated:

I think the best use of tags is to either draw potential readers to what they like or to warn potential readers who are squicked, turned off or just don't care for that particular aspect or kind of story. If your story has any of these types of actions, activities or story features, IMHO, the tags should be used. If thirty different aspects or elements are used, then thirty different tags should be used.

You are being fair to your readers this way.

Replies:   Switch Blayde
StarFleet Carl

@Dominions Son

There are only around 180 some tags in total. If you are using more than a quarter of them on anything less than an epic novel (200K + words) your story is probably a bit unfocused.


435,000 words, I used less than 30 tags.

https://storiesonline.net/s/13629

I suppose by a strict definition of the tags, there may be a few missing from my story, but to me as the author, those tags not used aren't relevant to the story. And since I was adding tags as needed as I wrote and posted it, I was very much aware of the content of each chapter.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@StarFleet Carl

I suppose by a strict definition of the tags, there may be a few missing from my story, but to me as the author, those tags not used aren't relevant to the story. And since I was adding tags as needed as I wrote and posted it, I was very much aware of the content of each chapter.


I don't see needing fewer tags on even a very long story as in any way counter to anything I have said on this topic.

Switch Blayde

@mcguy101

If your story has any of these types of actions, activities or story features, IMHO, the tags should be used.


Let's say there's a scene where the woman uses her mouth on the guy before having sex. Maybe to get him hard. Maybe foreplay. That's the only oral sex in the story.

Should the author have the "oral sex" tag because of that? Someone looking for oral sex might be disappointed.

Replies:   mcguy101  Keet
Crumbly Writer

@Dominions Son

There are only around 180 some tags in total. If you are using more than a quarter of them on anything less than an epic novel (200K + words) your story is probably a bit unfocused.

I've got a new story coming up, which is only 120,000 words, but it only has five tags, six at the most (I'll have to see whether there are any new tags when I finally go to post), so jumping to 40+ tags for only another 80,000 words sounds a bit extreme.

Well-written stories tend to stick to topics. Unfocused, rambling tales tend to bounce all around the place, mainly because the author really has no clue what points they're trying to make. And as has already been noted, many of the 'tag abusers' are writing 'to' the tags (i.e. writing chapters for the express purpose of adding additional tags, instead of trying to properly code the story as it stands).

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@Crumbly Writer

I've got a new story coming up, which is only 120,000 words, but it only has five tags, six at the most (I'll have to see whether there are any new tags when I finally go to post), so jumping to 40+ tags for only another 80,000 words sounds a bit extreme.


Don't forget, you mostly write no or minimal sex stories. That cuts down a lot on the applicable tags for any given story.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Crumbly Writer

@Dominions Son

Don't forget, you mostly write no or minimal sex stories. That cuts down a lot on the applicable tags for any given story.

Even when I was, that might add another 2 or 3 tags, not 30 or 40. I'll say it again, an abundance of tags is mostly a sign of an unfocused author who's merely fumbling, making it up as he goes, with no clear idea of where his story is going. Even with 50 or 100+ chapter stories, the better ones known where the story is going, rather than simply churning out new sex scenes hoping to keep the story going by revealing new ways to put tab A into slut B.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son
Updated:

@Crumbly Writer


Even when I was, that might add another 2 or 3 tags, not 30 or 40.


It depends on what you're getting into with the sex.

Just basic vanilla sex your' going to have at least 1 age/gender combo tag, and probably a consent level tag, that's two tags right there.

Any same sex activity will add another 1 or 2 tags.

Incest adds at least 2 more.

Any BDSM action will add at least another 2.

Plus any fetish activities.

You can easily get another 10-15 tags without making the story significantly more complicated.

I will agree, that ~30 tags is is starting to push the limits even in very long stories, but it is not, in my opinion, necessarily impossible for a story over 200K words.

Replies:   StarFleet Carl
StarFleet Carl

@Dominions Son

I will agree, that ~30 tags is is starting to push the limits even in very long stories, but it is not, in my opinion, necessarily impossible for a story over 200K words.


Okay, I think I see where you were going here, so I misunderstood what you said earlier.

mcguy101

@Switch Blayde

Or someone might get squicked by mouth to genital contact (God help them, but there are people like that). Oral sex for foreplay is still oral sex.

Uther_Pendragon

@Keet

As an author, I've been torn. If you have MF, do you need Hetero? OTOH, there are people who avoid some tags. If you have a decent-length story with many sex scenes, one of them involves anal, should you leave it off the tags because somebody looking for anal isn't going to be happy reading 10,000 words of which 30 involve his preference?
Should you put it in because it's going to squick somebody else if you don't warn him?

Replies:   Keet  Crumbly Writer
Keet

@Uther_Pendragon

I think MF can be nothing else then Hetero so that one should be easy. 30 words in 10,000? I do not think it needs a tag unless is is something that specifically requires a warning. Perhaps even better to mention it at the top of the chapter where it occurs if it's just a single occurrence in the whole story. That way you avoid someone selecting the story thinking a specific tag is a frequent part in the story and at the same time you avoid someone not selecting the story because of the tag.
Your example of anal is a rather "normal" act nowadays so I don't consider it as a possible warning tag. But that's me. Other (fetish) tags should be included, I think, if they make up a regular part of the story, both for selecting and avoiding.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Keet
Updated:

@Switch Blayde

Let's say there's a scene where the woman uses her mouth on the guy before having sex. Maybe to get him hard. Maybe foreplay. That's the only oral sex in the story.

Should the author have the "oral sex" tag because of that? Someone looking for oral sex might be disappointed.

See my reply to Uther_Pendragon above and replace "Anal" with "Oral sex". Funny how both seem alike.

Dominions Son

@Keet

at the same time you avoid someone not selecting the story because of the tag.


That isn't necessarily something you want to avoid. The people who would avoid the story because of the tag would probably be upset at encountering the content.

Replies:   Keet
Crumbly Writer

@Uther_Pendragon

As an author, I've been torn. If you have MF, do you need Hetero? OTOH, there are people who avoid some tags. If you have a decent-length story with many sex scenes, one of them involves anal, should you leave it off the tags because somebody looking for anal isn't going to be happy reading 10,000 words of which 30 involve his preference?
Should you put it in because it's going to squick somebody else if you don't warn him?

It's something that's chosen by each author, but the general consensus is, you DON'T add the first, because it's assumed, while you DO add the second, because we have so many raving homophobes on the site, who go out of their way to 1-bomb a story they have NO interest in reading simply because you tag it with something they dislike. (I know, it makes no sense, but you provide extra protection for the overly sensitive people who ignore the protections it offers.)

mcguy101
Updated:

In the interest of "tag clean up" I removed several codes from Mike and Malok (but added the "Far Past" code, as it did not exist when I started the story). While all of these codes were technically accurate, most of the removed ones were fetish based, that might disappoint readers looking for those activities to play a bigger part of the story. Additionally, I felt that removing them, would not violate the sensibilities of readers who are squicked by these activities/elements (as they are either not descriptive or major parts of the story).

To me, it's a fine line. In Switch's example of oral sex as foreplay, I still believe that readers with an aversion to oral sex might get squicked (especially if the content is descriptive), and the "Oral Sex" tag should be included.

Replies:   REP
REP
Updated:

@mcguy101

Life is full of squicks and most of us have learned how to deal with them when we unexpectedly encounter the ones that bother us.

I code my stories to define the story content. However, I don't go out of my way to find things that might squick someone out.

If all authors were to code their stories for everything that might squick someone out, then there would be so many codes that they would be meaningless.

Replies:   mcguy101  Zom
Keet
Updated:

@Dominions Son

That isn't necessarily something you want to avoid. The people who would avoid the story because of the tag would probably be upset at encountering the content.

Agree, but what I was trying to say is that you would not need to add a warning tag for 30 words in a +10,000 word story but give a warning at the top of the chapter. So the reader is warned but didn't skip the whole story. I have seen it before in stories, even a little warning in the description instead of of a tag.

Uther_Pendragon

@Keet

parallel qrestion is when is the designation "petting" justified?

Clearly, when that is the most intense sexual activity, it is. I would say that simple foreplay, as much as it looks like making out, does not qualify.

But what of a story in which the characters make out some times and go on to sex at later times?

Replies:   Keet  Dominions Son
REP

@Keet

Two things Keet.

1. Do you believe that authors are aware of everything that might squick their readers?

2. Do you plan to add a code or warning for every possible squick that you identify? You are limited to 50 codes. Your readers will eventually become inured to your squick warnings in the chapters and skip over them.

Keet

1. Do you believe that authors are aware of everything that might squick their readers?

Do they have to be? I think every author knows in general what "real" warning tags should be added.

2. Do you plan to add a code or warning for every possible squick that you identify? You are limited to 50 codes. Your readers will eventually become inured to your squick warnings in the chapters and skip over them.

That should be incidental. An example I have seen is where a MM warning was mentioned in the description and at the top of the chapter because nowhere else in the story would that tag be relevant.
And no offense, but a reader that gets squicky with every little thing is reading on the wrong site.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater  REP
Keet
Updated:

@Uther_Pendragon

But what of a story in which the characters make out some times and go on to sex at later times?


Wouldn't that qualify for both petting and the specific code(s) for the later sex? I don't have a problem with multiple codes when they are justified for a significant part of the story.

Ernest Bywater
Updated:

@Keet


Agree, but what I was trying to say is that you would not need to add a warning tag for 30 words in a +10,000 word story but give a warning at the top of the chapter. So the reader is warned but didn't skip the whole story. I have seen it before in stories, even a little warning in the description instead of of a tag.


The only issue with that is if the item is enough of a squick to the reader they'll skip the whole chapter, so you come to the situation can the story be told without that chapter, if it can the chapter isn't needed, anyway. If it can't the story becomes unreadable and the reader gives it a 1 and dumps it.

Anything that happens on-stage has to be coded, that's the basic rule of SoL as set out in the various instructions on it. Doing it any other way is just asking for trouble and backlash from readers you catch unawares.

Describe an actual rape, and it needs a code while just saying Miss Smith was raped doesn't require a code. Sometimes less is more in that regards, less description of the event is more readers.

typo edit

Ernest Bywater

@Keet

An example I have seen is where a MM warning was mentioned in the description and at the top of the chapter because nowhere else in the story would that tag be relevant.


If it's an explicit scene, even if it's just the one scene, it should be coded.

Replies:   Keet  richardshagrin
mcguy101

@REP

I'm not saying you should code everything, but I still agree about the example of oral sex (or anal sex, for that matter). If the sex/activity is descriptive, it should be tagged, IMHO. Same for scat/pissing etc.

Keet

@Ernest Bywater

If it's an explicit scene, even if it's just the one scene, it should be coded.

In general yes. But we were talking about a 30 word scene in a 10,000 word story. I would skip the story with a MM code but wouldn't I miss a potentially great story because of that? If there is a major scene or multiple occurrences, then yes, it should be coded.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
REP

@Keet

Just checking and I agree with both responses, especially the last sentence. As authors we should use the codes to tell the readers what our story is about. But trying to protect them from an isolated mention of one of their squicks is more than I care to do.

Ernest Bywater

@Keet

In general yes. But we were talking about a 30 word scene in a 10,000 word story. I would skip the story with a MM code but wouldn't I miss a potentially great story because of that? If there is a major scene or multiple occurrences, then yes, it should be coded.


I understand the point you're making, however, the guidelines are clear - if the description is explicit it gets coded. If it's really just a 30 word scene then maybe the explicit aspects should be dropped and it's replaced with a later comment about being arse fucked the night before.

Most of my stories are 45,000 words or more with several over 90,000 words and 3 over 250,000 words - yet I code for each type of explicit sex scene I have in a story, and every other code that looks to apply to every story.

The worst thing I've had happen as a reader was to invest hours reading the first 30 plus chapters of a story to find the next chapter had an extreme BDSM scene that was not mentioned in the codes. I never knew how long the scene was because I could get past the first paragraph - I've written several BDSM scenes myself, but this one in the story was too extreme. I was pissed off because I'd wasted all the time up to that chapter reading a story that should have been tagged and wasn't. That story got one of the few 1 votes I've every issued because it had absolutely no appeal factor for me at that point. That author is also on my never read again list because he can't be trusted to give warnings.

Once again - the actual instruction from Lazeez is if it's explicitly described, it gets coded - no ifs, no buts, just code it.

Replies:   mcguy101  REP  awnlee jawking
richardshagrin

@Ernest Bywater

MM warning

I think M&Ms are a perfectly normal candy. Of course peanut M&Ms should have a warning.

Replies:   mcguy101  Ernest Bywater
Dominions Son

@Keet

Agree, but what I was trying to say is that you would not need to add a warning tag for 30 words in a +10,000 word story but give a warning at the top of the chapter.


There are more than a few readers who would object to that approach. I don't have a lot of real squicks, things I can't at least tolerate if the story is otherwise good enough.

However, If I did encounter something like that with just a chapter warning, I would be pissed off about it. By skipping parts of the story, I am not reading the story the author wrote, and that's not something I want to do.

Replies:   tendertouch  Keet
Dominions Son

@Uther_Pendragon

But what of a story in which the characters make out some times and go on to sex at later times?


I would say that in a longer story, if you have a scene where there is a heavy make out session that isn't foreplay to a sex scene (sex may happen later, but not immediately after) then petting is appropriate.

mcguy101

@Ernest Bywater

I understand the point you're making, however, the guidelines are clear - if the description is explicit it gets coded. If it's really just a 30 word scene then maybe the explicit aspects should be dropped and it's replaced with a later comment about being arse fucked the night before.


That was my understanding as well, and we are sympatico on this, Ernest. As I mentioned, it's all about descriptions. If you describe it, you tag it. If you just say it happened, then you don't need to tag it.

mcguy101
Updated:

@richardshagrin

I think M&Ms are a perfectly normal candy. Of course peanut M&Ms should have a warning.


Only if described to a diabetic. Then you need to include the tag "sugar", lol. Of course the peanut allergy would have to be tagged.

Ernest Bywater

@richardshagrin

I think M&Ms are a perfectly normal candy. Of course peanut M&Ms should have a warning.


they's just sweet nuts.

tendertouch

@Dominions Son

There are more than a few readers who would object to that approach.

Count me as one of them. When I get into a story and find the author has decided not to code one of my squicks I first contact them to let them know. Sometimes the author just missed it. I can deal with that. Sometimes the author tries to say that it's not a big deal, it's not a central part of the story or some other BS. That author hits my exclusion list.

That's part of why I almost always wait until stories are complete before reading them - authors frequently add codes as they go along. I also avoid stories where the author says in their synopsis that they are intentionally excluding codes that would apply.

Do I miss some good stories by doing this? Probably. Are there more stories out there? Yep. Each author will make their own choices but as a reader I have choices, too.

Zom

@REP

Life is full of squicks

And some of them just keep coming back :-)

REP
Updated:

@Ernest Bywater

@ Keet

If you click the Posting Stories link, you get a document titled "Posting rules and Author agreement"

The first portion of this document contains "rules" that specify what authors must do.

Then you get to a section titled "Good Submission Practices:", which states: "As you can see on the site, each story has a description and a bunch of codes to categorize it. Please follow these guidelines to ensure that your story reaches the right audience."

In this section, Lazeez is presenting strongly worded recommendations as to what an author should do to achieve the best scores. He asks the author to follow his suggestions; he does not demand compliance by making it a rule. He leaves it to the author to decide whether his suggestions are implemented and how to implement them.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Zom
Updated:

@Ernest Bywater

@Keet


Make sure you folk take close notice of what REP says. He is never wrong, and his words are worth their weight in gold.

Ernest Bywater

@REP

In this section, Lazeez is presenting strongly worded recommendations as to what an author should do to achieve the best scores. He asks the author to follow his suggestions; he does not demand compliance by making it a rule. He leaves it to the author to decide whether his suggestions are implemented and how to implement them.


Although Lazeez words it nicely, if you leave a code off and anyone reports it you'll find Lazeez will either add the code or pull the story as soon as he's aware of the issue. he may delay while trying to contact the author to have them do the action first.

However, the key aspect from the instructions is quite simply (bold in this next paragraph is by me for emphasis):

Correct codes are extremely important. Most people use the codes to decide whether they want to read a story or not. The more precise your codes are the better your scores will be. If you put the wrong codes or you miss some codes or even put extra codes, you risk the chance of people retaliating by giving you low scores.

................

I'd say most readers will give you a low score for not coding properly if they hit something they're not happy with.

Another significant point is made clear when he says:

Precise coding is also important. Excessive coding is bad. If something is mentioned in the story but not described, then it shouldn't coded for. Anything that happens off-screen shouldn't be coded for.

Which clearly implies anything on-screen needs to be coded for.

.................................

Whenever you find a story that doesn't have a code it should have you should report it to Lazeez so he can have it fixed. Where a code has been added to the system after the story was posted you should report it and Lazeez will contact the author, and will add the code if the author doesn't respond soon enough.

Replies:   robberhands
REP

To All:

Apparently Zom got upset because I did not agree with him. He then turned to sarcasm and was angered by my responses. So now he is following me from thread to thread attacking me like an angry, petulant child with sarcastic comments. I think I was about 12 years old when I first heard sarcastic comments similar to his used on the playground. The adults must have considered sarcastic comments like Zom's to be old and tedious back then for I was advised to just ignore my taunter. It was good advice back then and I feel it is the proper way to address Zom's remarks.

Personally, I feel Zom's comments serve a purpose. They warn others of how he is likely to treat them if they choose to chat with him and anger him by disagreeing with one of his posts, opinions, or beliefs.

Replies:   Zom
Zom
Updated:

@REP


He then turned to sarcasm and was angered by my responses.


Now you know how it is to be on the other side of your intransigent pontifications. Suck it up REP or get out of the playpen.

I make no apology for being angered. It is a normal reaction. Unfortunately, as is obvious by the start of your 'To All' post, you still don't understand why I became angered.

Arrogance can be like that. You might have noticed that I have never reacted as strongly as this to anybody else, but I think it is unlikely that you did, or would.

Replies:   REP  Capt. Zapp
Ernest Bywater

Calm down, Children, and behave.

Replies:   Zom
REP
Updated:

@Zom


you still don't understand why I became angered.

Arrogance can be like that.


Oh I understand arrogance. How dare REP take the sarcastic comment I made to him, turn it around, and send it back to me.

PS If you can't take the consequences, you shouldn't dish it out.

Replies:   Zom
robberhands
Updated:

@Ernest Bywater

Although Lazeez words it nicely...

He didn't word it nicely, he worded it precisely. Your quotations are from a section with the caption 'Good Submission Practices', not 'the ironclad rules of coding'.

I'd still agree with you if the only purpose of the coding would be to warn readers but the codes also serve as search criteria, i.e. advertisement of story content. A reader who chose your story because you applied the tag 'Voyeurism' is just as likely to punish you with a bad score if the only voyeuristic scene happens on page 447 of your epic-length novel. In my opinion, the low score would be justified for false advertisement.

Personally, I only tag as a warning of story content, while I omit tags which are applicable by definition but I deem neither squick-worthy nor relevant to the story.

For instance, these are the codes and tags I applied to 'Law of the Blood' (Story Size: 936kb):

Genre: Fantasy
Sex Contents: Much Sex
Tags:
Ma/Fa, mt/ft, mt/Fa, Fa/Fa, ft/ft, Fa/ft, Mult, Magic, Mind Control, NonConsensual, High Fantasy, Incest, Brother, Sister, DomSub, Rough, Harem, Anal Sex, First, Size, Slow, Violent

These are the tags applicable by definition but I omitted:

Consensual, Reluctant, Romantic, Slavery, Lesbian, BiSexual, Heterosexual, Vampires, MaleDom, FemaleDom, Light Bond, Spanking, Group Sex, Polygamy/Polyamory, Interracial, Black Female, White Male, White Female, Analingus, Cream Pie, Exhibitionism, Masturbation, Oral Sex, Petting, Squirting, Tit-Fucking, Voyeurism, Big Breasts, Public Sex, Small Breasts, Prostitution, Royalty, Transformation

... yes, all descriptive and on-scene.

The story was completed in 2012 and about 20,000 people read the complete story since then. It has a score of 8.30 and no one ever complained to me about a missing code or a code I wrongly applied.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater  Keet  Not_a_ID
Ernest Bywater

@robberhands

He didn't word it nicely, he worded it precisely. Your quotations are from a section with the caption 'Good Submission Practices', not 'the ironclad rules of coding'.


There ironclad enough that Lazeez will apply them if the story is brought to his notice.

Mind you, there are a lot of codes which cover other codes as well when you use them right. Take the Age/gender codes - you can list all of the combinations in a story or just go with Mult for multiple partners and leave it at that; with the incest group if there are multiple combinations you can just use the generic Incest tag instead of listing all of the combination involved - that's just a couple of examples. Naturally, there are a lot where you can't do that.

The biggest risk you take with not coding is breaking trust with the reader by throwing in something they would have avoided if it was coded, thus you tell them they can never trust any of your story codes and thus they won't even look at any of you other stories as well as giving you a low appeal score on the one they did read up to where you screwed them.

robberhands

@Ernest Bywater

The biggest risk you take with not coding is breaking trust with the reader by throwing in something they would have avoided if it was coded, thus you tell them they can never trust any of your story codes and thus they won't even look at any of you other stories as well as giving you a low appeal score on the one they did read up to where you screwed them.

The same applies for readers disappointed by you for advertising sparse content without any relevance to the story.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater  mcguy101
Ernest Bywater

@robberhands

The same applies for readers disappointed by you for advertising sparse content without any relevance to the story.


So comment on it being a minor aspect in the story description, don't leave it out or hide it deep into the story.

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands

@Ernest Bywater

So comment on it being a minor aspect in the story description, don't leave it out or hide it deep into the story.

I've only 500 signs to write a reasonable story synopsis. I won't waste it to comment on irrelevant sexual specifics. I have done all I deem necessary in this regard by carefully coding the story.

Dominions Son

@Ernest Bywater

you can list all of the combinations in a story or just go with Mult for multiple partners and leave it at that


No. Mult is for threesomes, foursomes and moresomes.

Mult Multiple Partner. ie MFF or mmmF, (done like this because of the endless combinations that cannot be all included)


Using Mult to cover multiple instances of different age/gender combinations of one on one sex is not appropriate.

awnlee jawking

@Ernest Bywater

I understand the point you're making, however, the guidelines are clear - if the description is explicit it gets coded.


For a long, sex-orientated story, that could lead to a conflict with the 50 code limit.

I think it would be helpful to authors if Lazeez could provide statistics for the most frequently selected codes for inclusion and exclusion. That would help authors decide which codes would provide the least inconvenience to readers if they were omitted from a story.

AJ

Capt. Zapp

@Zom

Suck it up ... or get out of the playpen.


You should heed your own advice.

Replies:   Zom
Zom

@Ernest Bywater

Calm down, Children, and behave.

Him first :-)

Zom
Updated:

@REP


Oh I understand arrogance.


I am sure you do. No one could be such a proficient exponent of arrogance without understanding it.

And you still don't understand my anger. But you have your instant, simple explanation, and you know you are right.

Zom

@Capt. Zapp

You should heed your own advice

Thanks. I do. But not exclusively :-)

Keet

@robberhands

For instance, these are the codes and tags I applied to 'Law of the Blood' (Story Size: 936kb):

Genre: Fantasy
Sex Contents: Much Sex
Tags:
Ma/Fa, mt/ft, mt/Fa, Fa/Fa, ft/ft, Fa/ft, Mult, Magic, Mind Control, NonConsensual, High Fantasy, Incest, Brother, Sister, DomSub, Rough, Harem, Anal Sex, First, Size, Slow, Violent

These are the tags applicable by definition but I omitted:

Consensual, Reluctant, Romantic, Slavery, Lesbian, BiSexual, Heterosexual, Vampires, MaleDom, FemaleDom, Light Bond, Spanking, Group Sex, Polygamy/Polyamory, Interracial, Black Female, White Male, White Female, Analingus, Cream Pie, Exhibitionism, Masturbation, Oral Sex, Petting, Squirting, Tit-Fucking, Voyeurism, Big Breasts, Public Sex, Small Breasts, Prostitution, Royalty, Transformation

... yes, all descriptive and on-scene.

I have never seen such an incredible good way to code a story without needing all 50 available tag-spots.
Kudos to you!

Keet

@Dominions Son

Agree, but what I was trying to say is that you would not need to add a warning tag for 30 words in a +10,000 word story but give a warning at the top of the chapter.

There are more than a few readers who would object to that approach. I don't have a lot of real squicks, things I can't at least tolerate if the story is otherwise good enough.

However, If I did encounter something like that with just a chapter warning, I would be pissed off about it. By skipping parts of the story, I am not reading the story the author wrote, and that's not something I want to do.

I'm not sure how to respond to that. For me I would hate to miss a good story if I can just skip a scene that I would not like. I do that sometimes when I encounter such a scene without warning. I have never felt that I missed what the author wanted to get across. At the same time I can understand that some readers would object to such an approach.
We have a good system here that unfortunately could be abused, the main reason I started this topic. The 50-tag limit took away most possible abuse occasions and so the reason for starting the topic. I was not aware of that limit before I posted the topic. Your response and a lot of others have made me look differently at the code system. Thank you!

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@Keet

For me I would hate to miss a good story if I can just skip a scene that I would not like.


As an author, I detest readers who do that. If you don't want to read the story I wrote as I wrote it, go read a different story.

Replies:   Keet  Ernest Bywater
Keet

@Dominions Son

As an author, I detest readers who do that. If you don't want to read the story I wrote as I wrote it, go read a different story.

I can understand that and I must say that it rarely happens that I have to skip a scene. It is more likely that I have skipped the whole story. I have a very good example: 35 by Allen Wilson. I read a lot of it and it is a very good story, but it got to me too much and I had to start skipping scenes. When I had to do that multiple times I abandoned the story. If it was just one scene I had to skip I would still enjoy a very good story. Would Allen hate me for that?

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@Keet

I can understand that and I must say that it rarely happens that I have to skip a scene.


There have been readers on the forum who have outright demanded that authors go out of their way to make types of scenes they don't like (most typically sex scenes, in general, not any particular kink) easy to skip.

If it was just one scene I had to skip I would still enjoy a very good story.


It might have been a good story, but it wasn't the story Allen wrote.

Would Allen hate me for that?


I have no idea, but you have no right to expect him to be happy about it.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater  Keet
Ernest Bywater

@Dominions Son

As an author, I detest readers who do that. If you don't want to read the story I wrote as I wrote it, go read a different story.


And thus we get to the crux of why the readers need the codes to know if they want to read the story or not before they start.

Replies:   Capt. Zapp
Ernest Bywater

@Dominions Son

Would Allen hate me for that?

I have no idea, but you have no right to expect him to be happy about it.


In the situation of a reader skipping a scene because it involves something the reader didn't like and it wasn't alerted to the reader in either the codes or the story description at the start, then I expect the author would be extremely happy to have a reader skip over a scene they didn't like because that's exactly what the author set up to have happen by not giving the reader any advance notice of that being in the story.

Keet

@Dominions Son

It might have been a good story, but it wasn't the story Allen wrote.

Would Allen hate me for that?

I have no idea, but you have no right to expect him to be happy about it.

Then he is probably glad I stopped reading his story.

Capt. Zapp

@Ernest Bywater

And thus we get to the crux of why the readers need the codes to know if they want to read the story or not before they start.


Back when the only way to get a book was to go into a store and buy one, I never saw any kind of codes letting me know what was on the pages. In most cases, there was just a short blurb about the story in the inside flap of the front cover, and an 'about the author' on the inside back.

How soft society has become to have to have codes telling us there may be something we don't like in a book.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater  REP
Ernest Bywater

@Capt. Zapp

Back when the only way to get a book was to go into a store and buy one, I never saw any kind of codes letting me know what was on the pages.


That's still the case, however the story descriptions are usually longer and it's dead easy to flip through the book glancing at the pages at different points to get a feel for it before you go to the counter - that's not easy to do with an e-book posted in chapters or different html pages. Thus you need an easier approach. Also, with the print books the publisher usually posts a lot of warnings about the type of erotic material if it's an erotic story, so there is a sort of coded information there.

REP

@Capt. Zapp


How soft society has become to have to have codes telling us there may be something we don't like in a book.


Agreed. It is probably an extension of the government making all of those laws to protect its citizens from everything that might hurt them. Laws like those that result in the prosecution of parents for allowing their kids to play all alone in their front yard.

mcguy101

@robberhands

Again, I'm with Ernest here. You describe it, you tag it. If it's mentioned or happens "off stage", that is a different story.

Replies:   robberhands  REP
robberhands

@mcguy101

Not a problem for me. Ernest tags his stories, you tag yours, I tag mine and we all live happily ever after.

REP

@mcguy101

You describe it, you tag it.


The issue as I see it is where should the line be drawn, which could be phrased as when do you stop adding codes and warnings. I fully agree with adding codes that describe the story content and codes warning of the story containing well-known squicks that people have that are on-screen.

I disagree with trying to label every possible squick that someone might have. If you describe a character as male with red hair, are you going to add a warning stating some male characters have red hair because someone might have a squick about males with red hair? I wouldn't and I doubt anyone would. But if we were to conform to the position of coding for everything described, we should add a warning if we think men with red hair might be someone's squick.

Replies:   Dominions Son  mcguy101
Not_a_ID

@robberhands

These are the tags applicable by definition but I omitted:

Consensual, Reluctant, Romantic, Slavery, Lesbian, BiSexual, Heterosexual, Vampires, MaleDom, FemaleDom, Light Bond, Spanking, Group Sex, Polygamy/Polyamory, Interracial, Black Female, White Male, White Female, Analingus, Cream Pie, Exhibitionism, Masturbation, Oral Sex, Petting, Squirting, Tit-Fucking, Voyeurism, Big Breasts, Public Sex, Small Breasts, Prostitution, Royalty, Transformation


I would probably throw Vampires on the code list because some people will go looking for that, rather than seeking to avoid it. Most of the other tags could be inferred otherwise.

Replies:   robberhands
Dominions Son
Updated:

@REP


I disagree with trying to label every possible squick that someone might have.


You can only label the things there are tags for.

But if we were to conform to the position of coding for everything described, we should add a warning if we think men with red hair might be someone's squick.


Only if someone squicked by red headed men convinces Lazeez that there are enough other people like him to justify adding a tag for that.

Replies:   robberhands  REP
robberhands

@Not_a_ID

I would probably throw Vampires on the code list because some people will go looking for that, rather than seeking to avoid it.

Then I'd advertise a single vampire who has short appearances in 3 early chapters out of 29. It's as I stated, there are reasons why I apply a code as well as reasons why I don't apply it.

robberhands

@Dominions Son

You can only label the things there are tags for ... Only if someone squicked by red headed men convinces Lazeez that there are enough other people like him to justify adding a tag for that.

If the only question for you to apply a code is whether there is a code or not, it doesn't matter if it's hair colors or breast sizes. You stopped thinking about why you have to apply a code, you just do it because the code exists.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@robberhands

You stopped thinking about why you have to apply a code, you just do it because the code exists.


No, I'm not suggesting it's that simple.

My point is that trying to raise issues of hypothetical squicks for which tags don't exist sheds zero light on the issue of when tags should or should not be included.

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands

@Dominions Son

No, I'm not suggesting it's that simple.

I know you didn't. However, the argument stated by others is exactly that; 'the code exists, so you must apply it if a scene in your story fits the definition'.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@robberhands

However, the argument stated by others is exactly that; 'the code exists, so you must apply it if a scene in your story fits the definition'.


True, but your hypothetical squick will do nothing to convince them otherwise, it was a pointless effort.

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands

@Dominions Son

True, but your hypothetical squick will do nothing to convince them otherwise, it was a pointless effort.

Neither am I REP nor did I introduce any hypothetical squicks into the discussion.

mcguy101
Updated:

@REP

The issue as I see it is where should the line be drawn, which could be phrased as when do you stop adding codes and warnings. I fully agree with adding codes that describe the story content and codes warning of the story containing well-known squicks that people have that are on-screen.


I think when it comes to sexual content that squicks/fetishes become an issue. For me the rule of thumb if you are dealing with a sexual activity in a descriptive manner (as opposed to a reporting manner), you are (assuming that you are a halfway decent writer as many SOL writers exceed this standard) creating a visceral experience for the reader, designed to get a response. If it is a kick or a fetish, it will draw a positive response. If a squick, then a negative one.

No author wants to limit their readership, but if you fail to tag something, you risk alienating readers who are offended not only by the content, but the fact that they weren't warned.

Then there is the matter of Lazeez. From what I gather his stance is "police yourself, or he will police your tags" (if he gets reader complaints).

Replies:   REP
REP
Updated:

@Dominions Son

The squicks can be identified by a tag or a written warning. Lazeez doesn't need to add a tag if he thought it would be rarely used, and in that case, we could generate a textual warning.

We are limited to fifty tags in the Codes sections, but we can add codes and warnings in an introduction and in the individual chapters.

If an author wanted to do it, they could put the codes defining the story's content that readers will search for to find stories to read. They could put a disclaimer in the description that other codes will be defined in individual chapters and then list the appropriate warning codes and text at the start of the respective chapters.

Unfortunately, that would be a problem with readers who want all the warnings before they start reading the Introduction or first chapter. But as Robberhands indicated that is already a problem with some stories due to the limit of 50 codes.

Replies:   Dominions Son
REP

@mcguy101

I think when it comes to sexual content that squicks/fetishes become an issue.


While I agree with what you say, why limit a squick to sexual content? There are numerous movies and books with scenes that squick people out.

I guarantee that if you write a descriptive dinner scene of the diners carving up and eating live animals that it would be a squick for many of the people who read the scene.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@REP

We are limited to fifty tags in the Codes sections, but we can add codes and warnings in an introduction and in the individual chapters.


There is also limited space in the story blurb. As to chapter warnings, a lot of readers would be seriously pissed off by a chapter warning after having already invested a significant amount of time in reading a long story.

My opinion on chapter warnings: DON'T.

Replies:   REP
REP

@Dominions Son

I agree. If I were to add additional tags and warnings, I would do it in an Introduction. If I considered the warning severe enough, I would also add the warning in the respective chapters.

Replies:   mcguy101
Dominions Son

@REP

There are numerous movies and books with scenes that squick people out.


Sure, in the larger context of the whole world. However, can you point to any evidence of readers complaining about non-sexual squicks in stories on SOL?

Replies:   REP  Not_a_ID
REP

@Dominions Son

No I can't. A number of years back, I knew a man who claimed to become physically nauseous at the sight of someone with an amputated limb. It was one of his squicks and he said talking about it was as bad a seeing it. I would imagine my friend would be rather upset by a scene in which a character lost their limb.

Logic tells me that people have non-sexual squicks and if they encounter them they will be upset. Especially if they encounter them without being warned.

Dominions Son

@REP

I knew a man who claimed to become physically nauseous at the sight of someone with an amputated limb. It was one of his squicks and he said talking about it was as bad a seeing it. I would imagine my friend would be rather upset by a scene in which a character lost their limb.


No matter where you put the warnings, you can put in only so many before people stop paying attention to them.

I don't see any reason to warn on something that doesn't represent a significant portion of the overall reader base.

Logic tells me that people have non-sexual squicks and if they encounter them they will be upset. Especially if they encounter them without being warned.


Logic tells me that such non-sexual squicks, with a very few exceptions like extreme gore, are individually far rarer than sexual squicks (sex is a particularly taboo topic).

Sorry, unless there is some threshold of readers complaining to Lazeez that authors need to warn people about that, I don't see it as being worth even .001 seconds of effort.

Replies:   REP
Not_a_ID

@Dominions Son

Sure, in the larger context of the whole world. However, can you point to any evidence of readers complaining about non-sexual squicks in stories on SOL?


Politics

Replies:   awnlee jawking
tendertouch

@REP

For things for which there's no tag but that the author feels may put off readers there's the Caution tag as a catch-all. I'd probably use that and use a brief portion of the synopsis to tell readers to see the forward for an explanation.

Replies:   REP
REP

@Dominions Son

I agree with what you're saying DS. My objection is the statements indicating EVERYTHING mentioned MUST be coded. As authors we need to use common sense and our own judgment.

REP

@tendertouch

Yes that is an option for topic that an author wants to warn a reader about.

However, most of the posts in this thread deal with inclusion of an existing code and the disagreement is about whether it is appropriate to include the code if a story includes any of the coded activity or whether there is a threshold that defines whether the code's inclusion is appropriate or inappropriate.

awnlee jawking

@Not_a_ID

UK English.

AJ

mcguy101
Updated:

@REP


I would do it in an Introduction.


I guess it is just a matter of preference. I'd rather tag something up front, than include an introduction. I think it better to just warn or interest the reader with tags and go right into my tale with little or no fanfare, without a detailed explanation of why (or why not) a reader would want to read my story.

Replies:   robberhands  REP
robberhands

@mcguy101

I guess it is just a matter of preference.

Although I don't agree with your view on story coding, at least we share this preference. I will never bother my readers with a rambling story introduction about content tags and why I applied or didn't apply them to the story. If I fucked it up, they'll let me know soon enough anyway. If I didn't, there also was no need to waste their time with pointless contemplations.

Uther_Pendragon

@Ernest Bywater

Lazeez DOES limit the length of titles.

That cut the one I wrote on a short-short story:
"Prone is not Synonymous with Supine, or let me put that to you in Another way."

I didn't quite get the story shorter than the title, but I tried.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@Uther_Pendragon

I didn't quite get the story shorter than the title, but I tried.


Sounds like a good basis for a special contest. lol.

REP

@mcguy101

I'd rather tag something up front, than include an introduction.


DS and I were talking about different ways to warn a reader. In particular, if the author had hit the 50 code limit.

Introductions can be useful. Especially when it would be helpful for the reader to have certain information and providing the information as part of the story would interrupt the flow of the plot.

Replies:   mcguy101
mcguy101
Updated:

@REP

In particular, if the author had hit the 50 code limit.


I think it would take a completely hedonistic "stroke story" epic to justify 50 codes. My latest tale, Mike and Malok has 28 tags and runs more than 250 pages (in epub format =563K, which is solidly novel length). I don't think that is unreasonable.

As a reader, I would rather have warnings mentioned in tags or the story description, than have to download a story to my device and read through an introduction, but maybe that's just me.

sharkjcw

A couple of years ago I remember some stories being written to try to use every story tag at that time.

Severusmax

@REP

I was initially under the impression that the tags should be included for every single reference to an activity, but webmaster corrected me on that point. I still view tags mostly as a warning, however, to weed out possible trolls wh might not care for my various taboo tales and their wide variety of socially censured activities. The key difference is that I now use the tags for only onscreen acts, not offscreen, too.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@Severusmax

I now use the tags for only onscreen acts, not offscreen, too.


Which is how they are supposed to be used, but many writers don't realize that.

Replies:   Severusmax
Severusmax

@Ernest Bywater

Lol, my former practice being a case in point.

Uther_Pendragon

@Vlad_Inhaler

Our glorious webmaster was going to impose an upper limit, not sure what happened there.


There is an upper limit, but it's something ridiculous. IIRC (improbable) it's 50.

One point is that the same story could reasonably be labeled mf, or
mf, teen, school, hetero.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son
Updated:

@Uther_Pendragon


One point is that the same story could reasonably be labeled mf, or

mf, teen, school, hetero


The school tag in your second list is not in the least bit redundant to mf.

The mf tag inherently includes teen and hetero, it does not necessarily imply school.

The school tag implies that a major part of the story arc revolves around school or is set in the context of school.

You can easily have a story about teens with none of the action happening in, around, or about school. For example, a summer vacation romance.

The school tag can also indicate a story with main characters in their early 20s set in or revolving around a university/college.

docholladay

As a reader my only suggestion would be to make a list of all the tags that might relate to the story before tagging the story. Then go though that list and see which tags if any are covered by another tag. Remove the tags that are covered by another tag as those are unneeded extra tags. Recheck the list to make sure the needed tags as far as possible are used. Then tag the story for posting purposes. Sure there will be readers who will ask for more tags but hopefully this will minimize excess tagging.

richardshagrin

It occurred to me that the large or small breast tags could be combined into one: "Breasts" which also could be used for medium sized ones if the story revolved around using or abusing them.

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