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Old January 19 2013, 09:51 PM   #16
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Re: Did Vulcan space have a name?

Why do people quote books as though they're authoritative? They're non-canon, folks.
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Old January 19 2013, 10:57 PM   #17
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Re: Did Vulcan space have a name?

Captain McBain wrote: View Post
Why do people quote books as though they're authoritative? They're non-canon, folks.
"Canon" is overrated. Canon just means the core work as opposed to derivative works. It doesn't mean some kind of official seal of approval. We're fans, not employees of CBS Studios, so why do we need official approval? This is a work of entertainment, of imagination. It's something we find fun and interesting. It's not study material for some exam where we have to get the "right" answers.

So relax. Nobody is quoting anything as though it's "authoritative," because of course the whole thing is imaginary. We're merely pointing out what the tie-in materials have asserted. The core body of the fictional franchise has not addressed the issue, so we turn our attention to other interpretations of the fiction which have addressed the issue. We're not claiming it's the "true" or "authoritative" answer, we're just talking about stories people wrote.
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Old January 20 2013, 07:05 AM   #18
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Re: Did Vulcan space have a name?

Captain McBain wrote: View Post
Why do people quote books as though they're authoritative? They're non-canon, folks.
Why do people cite "canon" as though it matters?

Who gives a fuck? It's all equally imaginary.

"Non-canon" just means that future episodes or films might contradict it -- and that's really no different from canon, since plenty of later episodes or films have contradicted earlier canonical works.
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Old January 20 2013, 04:22 PM   #19
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Re: Did Vulcan space have a name?

You know, in the first couple of decades of Trek fandom, you never heard anyone use the word "canon," not that I recall. Because there was little or no new screen Trek on the horizon and thus the prospect of something in the tie-ins being contradicted was a non-issue. The risk of contradiction did exist in the era when new Trek was continuously being produced for TV, and that's when "canon" became a buzzword -- but there is no new Prime-universe canon being produced and isn't likely to be anymore, so it is once again a non-issue. The tie-ins are the only game in town, so saying "they aren't canon" is a totally meaningless set of syllables.

Of course, tie-ins can still contradict each other; Pocket, IDW, and ST Online all have separate and incompatible continuities, sometimes more than one per company. But that's always been the way. Again, in those early days, the tie-ins went in a lot of different directions. Since there wasn't any new "gospel" being produced, or at least very little of it, it just didn't seem that important whether a story conformed to some singular "real" version of things. It was an exercise in make-believe, something where authors and fans were free to use their imaginations to fill in the gaps, and it was much more individualized. None of this modern attitude of authoritarian canon than fans have to submit and conform to or else... something. It was a lot more populist than that.
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Old January 21 2013, 10:37 AM   #20
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Re: Did Vulcan space have a name?

I suppose the same could be said for the direction that Enterprise, and later JJ Abrams Star Trek, took.

I tend to think that a new timeline was created before "Broken Bow", for there are so many contradictions between Enterprise and the first four series in what was established. One example comes to mind when I think about Vulcan.

From "Balance of Terror":
McCoy:
War is never imperative, Mister Spock.
Spock:
It is for them, Doctor. Vulcan, like Earth, had its aggressive colonizing period. Savage, even by Earth standards. And if Romulans retains this martial philosophy, then weakness is something we dare not show.
Based on this, the planet Vulcan, prior to Surak, expanded into neighboring systems with a warlike vigor. We see this implication in Nemesis, where it is implied that the colonizing descendants of Vulcans conquered another species.

For a species that valued logic and peace, they do have a mean streak of specism. (Is that the right word?) Some of their people viewed humans as "barbarians", a term that Spock once referred to his species once in the third season. (A consistent contrast in Star Trek since the beginning has been the duality of barbarity and civility.)
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Old January 21 2013, 05:30 PM   #21
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Re: Did Vulcan space have a name?

throwback wrote: View Post
I suppose the same could be said for the direction that Enterprise, and later JJ Abrams Star Trek, took.

I tend to think that a new timeline was created before "Broken Bow", for there are so many contradictions between Enterprise and the first four series in what was established.
No more or greater than the contradiction that already existed between those first four series, or between TOS and the movies, or within any one series. Contradictions have always been a fact of life in Trek. If there had been fans in the 1960s as fixated on continuity details as fans today, imagine what we'd hear. "Those idiots! Kirk's middle initial is R, not T!" "What's all this 'Vulcan' crap? They're Vulcanians, morons!" "Hey, it wasn't Spock's father who married a human, it was one of his ancestors!" "Where'd this 'Federation' crap come from? They've been telling us for half a season that it's an Earth ship!" "Yeah, and it answers to Space Central or UESPA, not this Star Fleet thing!"

And then there are the contradictions betwen TOS and the movies. In TMP, how come the Klingons changed appearance, not to mention every last piece of Starfleet technology and design? Why is Kirk saying he was only out in deep space for five years when he was in Starfleet for nearly a decade before the "five-year mission" began? And TWOK's contradictions are enormous. How did Khan's multiethnic band of followers turn into a bunch of blond Nordic types? Why are they in their mid-20s if they were stranded as adults 15 years earlier? Why do they have a movie-era medical console in their hovel, and why does Khan wear a movie-era Starfleet insignia around his neck? How does Khan know Chekov? How can Kirk say he's "never faced death" after losing Gary, Edith, Sam, Aurelan, Miramanee, and his unborn son?

And so on. There's a whole series of YouTube videos cataloguing the inconsistencies among the various Trek shows -- I think KingDaniel's sig has a link to them. It's just that as the years pass, fandom gets used to those inconsistencies and learns to rationalize them or gloss them over -- so the equal inconsistencies in the newest incarnation seem unprecedented to them, and you get this stuff about "It's not real Trek because it isn't consistent." People said the same thing decades ago about the TOS movies and TNG. But they got over it. Well, most of them did. There have been a couple of posters on this BBS in recent years who still consider everything after TMP or thereabouts to be apocryphal.
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Old January 21 2013, 05:35 PM   #22
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Re: Did Vulcan space have a name?

Captain McBain wrote: View Post
Why do people quote books as though they're authoritative? They're non-canon, folks.
Canon is just another word for opinion. When the producers and creators can't even come up with a general consensus about what is and is not canon, I don't take the concept too seriously.

If you don't want to read the books, that's fine... but it's quite petty to jump on the case of anyone who presumes to discuss them.... on a discussion board.
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Old January 21 2013, 06:54 PM   #23
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Re: Did Vulcan space have a name?

R. Star wrote: View Post
Canon is just another word for opinion.
No, it has nothing to do with opinion. The biggest mistake people make in their interpretation of the word is thinking that it has anything to do with opinion or authority or rightness or realness. It just means the original, core body of work as distinct from derivative works by outside creators. It's not supposed to be a value judgment or a dictatorial command. It's not supposed to mean absolute consistency or inviolate truth, because any long-running canon contradicts itself plenty.

The canon is just the main, ongoing story being told by the original creators or their direct inheritors -- a story that, like any work of fiction, is subject to error or intentional revisionism as it continues to be told. Sure, other stories by other creators won't necessarily be acknowledged by that core story, and might not be consistent with it in every respect, but so what? They're all just stories made up for our entertainment. And we can enjoy them as stories and be interested in the ideas they contain.
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Old January 21 2013, 10:35 PM   #24
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Re: Did Vulcan space have a name?

Christopher wrote: View Post

The canon is just the main, ongoing story being told by the original creators or their direct inheritors
So Gene Roddenberry's novelization of TMP or Jeri Taylor's novels are canon by that definition? Taylor has implied her novels are, others implied they weren't... and it goes on.

So those creators and inheritors all have varying opinions on what is and isn't canon in Trek. So it comes back to opinion. Take what you want for your Trek experience or don't at your pleasure.
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Old January 21 2013, 10:55 PM   #25
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Re: Did Vulcan space have a name?

R. Star wrote: View Post
Christopher wrote: View Post

The canon is just the main, ongoing story being told by the original creators or their direct inheritors
So Gene Roddenberry's novelization of TMP or Jeri Taylor's novels are canon by that definition? Taylor has implied her novels are, others implied they weren't... and it goes on.

So those creators and inheritors all have varying opinions on what is and isn't canon in Trek. So it comes back to opinion. Take what you want for your Trek experience or don't at your pleasure.
The owners have more power than "creators". Their's is the "opinion" that counts and informs the creators.

The general consensus has been on screen= canon. Taylor's book was only (semi-) canon when she was producing.
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Old January 21 2013, 11:07 PM   #26
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Re: Did Vulcan space have a name?

R. Star wrote: View Post
Christopher wrote: View Post

The canon is just the main, ongoing story being told by the original creators or their direct inheritors
So Gene Roddenberry's novelization of TMP or Jeri Taylor's novels are canon by that definition? Taylor has implied her novels are, others implied they weren't... and it goes on.
I said the main ongoing story. The Motion Picture itself was the main story; the novelization was an interpretation of that story. Thus TMP was the canon and the novelization was secondary.

As for Mosaic, Jeri Taylor did indeed intend it to be canonical while she was the showrunner, and she referenced it in "Coda." But her successors decided that her novels were not to be treated as canon. It's easy to define canon when only one creator is involved; for instance, Sherlock Holmes fiction by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle is canonical, while that by other authors is apocryphal. The Del Rey Babylon 5 novels or the Buffy Season 8-9 comics are part of their series' canons because their creators personally oversee them and choose them as the medium for telling a continuation of the core story. But with Trek, it's more complicated because the responsibility passes from one hand to another.

But as I said, canons are mutable. Fans are wrong to use "canon" to mean "right" or "real" or "consistent," because any long-running canon contradicts itself over time. A canon is a story being made up on the go, and that makes it subject to adjustment and revision. What is "real" in canon is whatever the current interpretation is. Think of it as successive approximations. If the storyteller is trying to approach some Platonic ideal of what the "real" story is, they may make mistakes early on but then home in on it better as they continue. See my above comments -- it took TOS the better part of a season to get such basic concepts as the Federation and Starfleet settled on. The later ideas superseded the earlier, rougher ones.
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Old January 21 2013, 11:35 PM   #27
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Re: Did Vulcan space have a name?

Oh so canon is the -current- opinion then, until it mutates into someone else's?
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Old January 21 2013, 11:55 PM   #28
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Re: Did Vulcan space have a name?

Christopher wrote: View Post
The Vulcans of Enterprise were very much like Cold War-era America -- a society that didn't claim other nations as its territory, yet wielded a strong, far-reaching, paternalistic influence over them in the belief that it was serving their best interests as well as its own. The Vulcan High Command no doubt saw its role as a peacekeeping one, and I think we can safely speculate that the High Command's military presence in this region was the main thing keeping Klingon territory from overrunning Earth in the 21st and early 22nd centuries. But their protection could be heavyhanded and often condescending.
Very keen observation.

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Anyway, the books' "Confederacy of Vulcan" is no doubt a nod to the "Planetary Confederation of 40 Eridani" from Franz Joseph's Star Fleet Technical Manual. They also refer to "The United Planets of Tellar" as a nod to the SFTM's "United Planets of 61 Cygni."
Ah, I didn't get the reference. Pretty neat.

Wasn't the name "Whole Vulcan" used in Spock's World? I have only a copy in Italian (where it's mentioned as the "Intero Vulcano"), but it's hard to decide if they are talking about the actual name or the political entity of just speaking in general terms: they say something like "on behalf of the Whole Vulcan etc", but capitalized words are used. Maybe it's clearer in the original English.
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Old January 22 2013, 12:05 AM   #29
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Re: Did Vulcan space have a name?

R. Star wrote: View Post
Oh so canon is the -current- opinion then, until it mutates into someone else's?
It's the story. Why is that so hard to understand? The original, core story told by the original storytellers or their authorized successors is the canon. Stories told by other people are not. The opinions of fans are not. Fans can't decide what's canon and what isn't any more than I can decide whether or not Hawai'i is one of the continental United States. Different creators can decide what the canon contains, but the canon is still one entity and the apocrypha are others. Canon is a noun, not an adjective.
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Old January 22 2013, 12:26 AM   #30
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Re: Did Vulcan space have a name?

Christopher wrote: View Post
R. Star wrote: View Post
Oh so canon is the -current- opinion then, until it mutates into someone else's?
It's the story. Why is that so hard to understand? The original, core story told by the original storytellers or their authorized successors is the canon. Stories told by other people are not. The opinions of fans are not. Fans can't decide what's canon and what isn't any more than I can decide whether or not Hawai'i is one of the continental United States. Different creators can decide what the canon contains, but the canon is still one entity and the apocrypha are others. Canon is a noun, not an adjective.
I agree with everything you've said on this subject except for one point.

Hawaii, as a group of islands, is not part of CONUS. It's a state, but not on the continent. No decision to be made, as it is self-evident.

If you were being ironic, well...
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