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Submitted on
April 3, 2012


73,465 (4 today)
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Love to hear your opinion!

Journal Entry: Tue Apr 3, 2012, 11:42 AM

The art of storytelling is as boundless and diverse as the stories themselves. With the rise of the digital age and instant communication, story creators can now receive immediate feedback from the audiences. Sometimes, the audience will give critiques and demand changes to the story. Those of you in the gaming community will be familiar with the outrage over Mass Effect 3's ending, and those who love TMNT will know about the dissatisfaction over changing turtles to aliens. If so many people dislike something, should the creators reflect on the audience's critiques and make the necessary changes to please them, or stick to their original vision?

This is a very complicated question that's the topic of :icontechgnotic:'s latest journal. He has provided quotes from a very diverse group of  people ranging from famous professionals in the movie and comic industry to emerging artists on dA. At the bottom of the journal is a list of questions on what do you guys think about the issue. Question 4 is specifically for fans of Knite and other comics on dA, but I would love to hear what your responses to the other questions are as well. Please leave your comments on his journal here… where he can respond to everyone :)

Thank you! :hug:

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331060 Featured By Owner May 26, 2012  Student Digital Artist
It depends. Sometimes, if you like the suggestions they have, you shouldn't just ignore them just because that wasn't your original plans. However, if you don't personally approve of their discontent, then you have every right to ignore them. In some cases, though, you have a greater motivation to listen to your audience such as when your pay is at stake. It all comes down to your particular situation, and there are far too many to come to a generalization of advice for this kind of issue.
Presley-G Featured By Owner May 8, 2012
This one is kind of a mine field depending on the common place knowledge or social status your work holds. Avatar for instance was a visually stunning movie; if James Cameron were to say he was purchasing the rights to re-make jaws in a more modern sense-"i.e" Avatar it up, then you'd have an uproar. Something honored and sacred to a community of film buffs and casual "you've got to watch this" couch side movie goers as Jaws would eventually-give it a few years to cool, start to see turn over, but it'd flop and fail in the mean time and mar the whole "Jaws" name in general going forward.
I chose this example because if someone did to it what they've kept re-doing and re-doing with TMNT, then it'd just keep wonking up the formula. I've never written anything spectacular, but I know people who have by staying true to their original style in light of teacher critique and other penalties. But that's the little leagues; as it's been said, there's different rules to the upper echelons. Future content uncreated or fully confirmed yet aside, changing the history of a franchise or character that's know to 2 or 3 generations prior a certain way prior is literally a agreeing to castrate yourself with a rusty spoon anymore with that sort of thing.
Either way, artists will be artists and that's why they're my favorite people. Sites like DA are great when for the whole pantheon because everyone is free to be themselves more or less; when you pick fights you're kind of asking for a reprimand. It's the larger scale and the fan expectations that are the issue otherwise. Am I right? Am I wrong? Am I luke warm...
animeforthesoul Featured By Owner Apr 28, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
When creating something such as comics or movies or books or video games or really any story telling media, part of it should be for the readers/watchers/players, but part of it has to be for the storyteller, even if it doesn't make the fans happy. Yes, of course when you, say, write a book, you have to write something that the readers will consume, because without the readers, you have no one willing to buy your product, but by the same token, when writing a story, ultimately the story is yours to tell, weather or not the readers will like it. Sometimes it is a fine line when trying to keep your readers and yourself happy. Sometimes you'll have to compromise and sometimes you need to hold your ground and say, "This is how I want it to end and so this is how it will end." A story only matters if the writer likes the story.

Though in the case of TMNT, it's a difficult thing trying to make a borrowed story new and that still lives up to it's former glory. I don't think having the turtles come from space was a good choice, but I'm not the one making the story so I have no right to make that decision.
Theshortyetevildork Featured By Owner Apr 19, 2012  Student Traditional Artist
I'd say that if there was such a strong emotional outburst to something in a story, the author should take it into account. If it's what they wanted people to feel in the first place, they should let it be, and even if it isn't the author should stay true to his original story to an extent. At the same time though, stories are meant to both be enjoyed by creator and I would definitely consider changing things even slightly so I make readers happy and also stay true to myself.

I guess that's what the case would be with Mass Effect, since it is an original story, but the TMNT reaction is understandable. It wasn't their own story originally, and completely deviates away from what the TMNT are. So die hard fans have a right to be upset. In that case, I may definitely consider changing it.
Hoshi-Saga Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
It depends. Most of the time the author's opinion should trump all, but if the author agrees with what the fans are saying then it is up to them to make the changes. I mean, if you feel that the fans are making a valid point then you should listen, but if you disagree then you should be true to yourself.
BlackCatAnna Featured By Owner Apr 15, 2012  Student Traditional Artist
I think that it depends on what the artist/author wants to get out of their work; if they want to please their fans or earn lots of money (or both) then they should pay great attention to what the masses want at the risk of making their story less individual and losing the plot. If they have a great plan which the fans may not know about then they might have to make sacrifices for the greater good of their story... Like flooding the Earth to kill off the bad people (yes, I am comparing artists/authors to God... Even though I'm an atheist)!
Personally, I wouldn't like anyone to have power over my creations and would hate to be forced to change my ideas. On the other hand, I think it's good for people to get feedback on their work- ideas can come from everywhere but if we enforce them then we might end up with a slippery slope where every author has to bow to the whims of their readers which would be a shame because we might end up with endless Mary Sues and I would have to kill myself.
Also, fans of a series can use their own imaginations to extend ideas with their own stories and art or even just in the confines of their own heads; just because a character dies doesn't mean that they are gone! It would be a shame if world war 3 had started over the decisions of who to kill off at the end of Harry Potter. The story is a product of its creator's imagination so they know best :)
(This is just what I think, anyway. I could rabbit on for hours so I'll shut up X_X )
SoundMatch Featured By Owner Apr 13, 2012
Author's should be allowed to do whatever they want to do. But what the Author should want to do is surprise the customer's in a POSITIVE WAY! I mean come on in mainstream media every single change is being criticized. Yea it may turn out alright. But why do we criticize it? CAUSE IT SUCKS, and then our opinions are used to make it better and the creator's take all the credit.

Sometimes its not the idea itself but the way it is portrayed, sometimes its the otherway round. One of the reasons I follow yuumei is that this person (sorry i dont know your gender, will stalk you later haha) is that she/he has surprised me delightfully in many ways.

I think it is absolutely fine and wonderful that artists are trying new things, but those new things can lead to mistakes. Mistakes are only bad if they are left unlearned.
xXwolf14Xx Featured By Owner Apr 11, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
I believe the author needs to divide the critiques. If someone makes a suggestion to the piece/story the author should consider whether or not he has a good point, or if the story will stray from the intended path when changed. A critique should be reflected on to a point where the author sees where the reader missed the target of the story and how many others missed a similar/ the same target in the story. To change your story solely on the grounds that others won't like it is, in my opinion, ridiculous. A story is only a story if the artist puts his or her soul and emotion into it so the audience hears their song within it. If someone changes their story for what others think it should be, they might as well apply the same thing to their life choices. That said stick to the original story.
SamGus Featured By Owner Apr 10, 2012
There are no original stories left to be told in the world, with that being said, the only reason to keep the title of a story you plan to change dramatically is to keep the fan base. In the case of TMNT changing even a little bit of the story, such as making them come to earth from some other planet, changes everything. We once fell in love with unlucky animals that where thrust into our world by a mix up and had no other means of survival but to hide in the sewers. Also these animals fought crime to better the world. Changing them into aliens means they had a choice to be here, and that to me takes away some of the anti-hero moments they had. For instance Raphel, who was indeed an anti-hero, was always cocky and didnt like to be bothered with helping people if it seemed like those people where bad in the first place. So why would this alien version of him stay on our planet if he could leave to his home world where he would be accepted at any time, why would any of them stay? Its all a marketing ploy I believe... He hit up Transformers and realized theres a shit ton of money to be made in relieving our childhood so hes moving on to TMNT... I loved the first few transformers, sounds like hes destroying TMNT tho.... To repeat my point here, if you change a story that changes any part of it, then change the name, after all Micheal Bay claims to be changing the back story then just change the name and let it go. Its no longer gonna be the Ninja Turtles we all grew to love, why pretend it is?

As far as ME3's ending, EA is a company that loves their money, and with that their DLC's. I honestly think they did a "crappy" ending for a reason, driving up hype for the DLC they will put out knowing that people will buy it up like crazy. BUT, where I differe on this situation than the other, is that the creators wrote a story, that story is the story they want to convey, if you dont like the story thats too bad thats their story. You want to live in their world you have to be willing to abide by the laws they set forth for you. There was a reason you played and loved these games, dont blow up just because they dont go the way you want em too, alot of the time that makes great games and stories.

I know you want this on the other side but I figured I'd stay here and comment on this part first.
BringerofD Featured By Owner Apr 9, 2012
i believe the general rule should be Don't change it. not to please the audience nor any other reasons. In other words in the example of ME3, too bad, this is how the developers wanted it to end. in the example of TMNT, like i said DON'T CHANGE IT! in other words the fans are right on that one. the turtles worked and were loved as they were, why did he go and change it?
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