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11 July 2000 @ 08:53 am
What I'm talking about when I talk about recording your fic as podfic: an open letter to authors  

Hello! If you're reading this, it's probably because I sent you a request to record one of your stories as podfic. Maybe you're unfamiliar with podfic, or just unsure about me and what I might do with your work. That's okay. Here's my take on things:

1) I asked permission to record you story because I loved it. It's that simple. I thought it was fantastic, and it sparked the same desire to jump in and play that you probably felt about the canon source when you wrote it. I love what you did with it, and now I want to see what I can do with it. You could sort of think of this as a really time and effort-intensive rec. (I've found several of my favorite authors by listening to someone else's podfic of their fic.) We wouldn't be having this conversation at all if I weren't really excited about your work.

2) It's okay to say no. Seriously. I'll be disappointed, but it won't hurt my feelings. I know not all authors are comfortable with having their works transformed, and that's okay. Honestly, I'd rather you just say no than completely ignore my message - or worse,  if you say yes because you think you have to, and then feel really awkward and uncomfortable about it afterward.

3) If you're reading this and you're already podfic-friendly, have you considered offering blanket permission to podfic? This might also help you out if you're okay with being podficced but don't want to deal with requests like mine. Posting a blanket permission policy (or a clear statement saying you're NOT open to podfic) might help get people like me out of your hair.

4) Regarding permission: I never post podfic without obtaining the author's permission (through their blanket policy or a direct request like the one I sent you). If I don't get a yes from you, directly or indirectly, I'll respect your decision.

5) Regarding credit: I always give credit to the author wherever the podfic is posted and in the podfic itself (usually at both the beginning and the end). I will never credit your work as my own. All I take ownership of is my recording - my voice, my stylistic choices, my interpretation of the work. Also, I always provide links to the text wherever I post the podfic, and more recently in the podfic's metadata as well. I actively encourage listeners to provide feedback to the author. See point number one, re: my love for your work and podfics as recs.

5) I post all my podfic on LJ, DW, AO3, and at amplificathon, where it's then uploaded to jinjurly's audiofic archive. If you're not comfortable with your fic getting promoted and archived, it's okay to say no! If I can't make the podfic openly accessible within fandom, though, there's not much incentive for me to record it. I don't ever post or promote my podfic outside of explicitly fannish spheres, though.

6) I always send a link to the completed podfic to the author as soon as it's posted. You can respond or not, link to it or not, as you will. I'm just letting you know it's out there and where you can find it. [personal profile] sophinisba sums up my feelings about this issue perfectly here

7) If you'd like to hear a sample of my work before you decide, you can find it all at my LJ, on AO3, or at the audiofic archive. There are several under 10 minutes long, in multiple fandoms. 

8) If you have any more questions, or if there's anything in here that you'd like clarified, please feel free to ask! You can message me on LJ or DW, or send me an email at reseuneone (at) gmail (dot) com.

Thanks for taking the time to consider my request. Once again, I really loved your work, and I really hope you say yes.


(This letter was inspired by similar letters written by parakaand revolutionaryjo, as well as by ongoing conversations about permission in the podfic community.)