on 1/24/16 04:32 pm (UTC)
kate: Kate Winslet is wryly amused (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] kate
Yes, but people use the Choose Not To Warn for any number of reasons. I often tag as much as I can, and if I feel like I haven't covered everything in the fic that might be potentially disturbing/hurtful but I can't think of any other tags, I will add "Choose Not To Warn" so that I err on the side of caution.

Also, there are all kinds of different "Choose Not To Warn" levels. One one extreme, it might be a newbie writer who put explicit gay sex in it for the first time and feels like that needs a warning (I have issues with this, but let's just use it for an example) and doesn't have any idea what to tag it, so leaves that area blank.

And then there's the person who feels that their fic, like a book, shouldn't be bound by tags or warnings and includes a rape scene and extreme violence and body horror, all bound by the "Choose Not To Warn" warning and no tags.

Those two fics have the exact same warnings/tags but extremely different content. And there's no way to know which is which. I'm not saying either author is wrong, but as a reader, if I read them one after the other, I might have a bit of a gearshift headache.

I am in support of both of those authors choosing to use that warning/tag system. And I would hope my friends with squicks and triggers would vet those stories with friends (and likely they would, at least in my experience). Reading the comments, I hear from some friends above, is another good way to protect themselves, so that was an interesting and useful hint.

There is also the fact that "Choose Not To Warn" is an actual warning, and the tags are content markers. Not everyone tags their warnings. Some people might not want to warn, but want to include tags to be searchable (and to be honest, I think those first two authors are shooting themselves in the foot by not using tags, because they are probably losing a lot of traffic to their stories). It's perfectly reasonable to use the not-warn option, and then tag for first time, canon AU, knotting, and bondage, but not the noncon. It's not what I would do, but it is definitely something I can see other authors doing, particularly if they feel like the noncon is an important plot point that would ruin the ending if the reader knew. (I don't really buy into that argument, myself, but I get it.)

For me though, I use the "Choose Not To Warn" warning as a catchall of things I might have forgot, and tag for everything, content and warnings and enticements. A lot of traffic is driven by tags, so I'm always confused by people who don't use them, no matter what their warning choice is.
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