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Revision as of 06:02, 31 March 2007 by Goober5000 (talk | contribs) (rewrote and elaborated a bit)
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When applied to FreeSpace, canon information is anything that has been confirmed, by Volition, as official truth within the FreeSpace universe. This is primarily derived from in-game material, such as command briefings, mission messages, cutscenes, and the tech room; though it can also be obtained from other sources such as the Freespace Reference Bible. Furthermore, anything stated by a Volition employee (such as the famous quote "The Shivans are merely a symptom of a much bigger problem") is generally also accepted as canon.

Canonicity is typically one of the most important measures of the quality of a user-created story (whether a mission or fan fiction). Linking a story with canon events is an excellent way to establish believability, consistency, and credibility. A story that has a high degree of correspondence with canon information will probably be viewed more favorably than a story which contradicts canon in many places.

A Section That Needs To Be Fleshed Out

  • Even canon contradicts itself sometimes (e.g. FS2 intro)
  • Some non-canon information, such as Su-Tehp's fleet arrangement list, is commonly used because it is a handy way to fill in gaps in canon -- but this should be treated as one of many possible "expanded universes" which writers should feel free to accept or not accept
  • Establishing the "only Volition information is canon" rule helps prevent elitism and strife (e.g. the possibility of "Inferno is canon" vs. "BWO is canon" factions)
  • Popularity should not dictate what is taken to be official (e.g. lobbying for Derelict to be declared canon is an insult to other post-Capella-era campaigns)
  • See also karajorma's writings on FS3

Wiki Policy on Canonicity

Because the FreeSpace Wiki aims to be a reliable resource, it is important for it to properly distinguish between canon and non-canon information. This is because readers will usually treat an article as describing canon unless it is clear from the context that it is not.

Generally, canon and non-canon information should appear in separate articles to avoid the possibility of confusing the two. When canon and non-canon information both appear in the same article, the canon should take precedence. There should be strong justification for the presence of non-canon information (for example, deductions which, though reasonably based on established facts, are not definitively known to be true) to reduce the possibility of confusion or distraction from the canon. The non-canon information should always be clearly labelled as such and, wherever possible, separated from the rest of the article through use of the {{non-canon}} tag:

If this is not possible, ensure that non-canon information is clearly marked by other means such as via footnotes.