- How do I become a member?
To become a member of Unknowableroom.org, you need to register an account. Choose a username (letters, numbers and underscore are allowed only) that's no more than 40 characters long. Please input a valid email address. You will receive an automated email verifying your email and giving you a password. It is advised that once you log in, you change your password to something easily remembered by you.
- I've lost/forgotten my password, what do I do?
On the log in page, there is an option to enter your email address and a new password will be sent to you.
- What is MemCP?
MemCP stands for Member's Control Panel. Here is where you have control over your profile, stories, artwork, icons, and favorite's lists.
- Edit options?
Here is where you edit your profile. Your profile is where you talk about yourself; give contact information, a homepage address, and where you choose to show your email, to receive emails when reviewed, and to allow anonymous reviews to your work.
- Email and Password?
Here you can change your password and email address.
- Manage User Icons?
Here is where you upload and delete your icons. Free accounts are allowed up to three icons while paid accounts are allowed up to 20. Icons must be in .png, .gif or .jpg file, and less than 50kb.
See also, Reviews category in FAQ
Here you can manage reviews made on your work and view reviews you have left for others. You can also reply to reviews left for you, delete specific reviews and view the results from the 4-question survey asked when reviewing a story.
Here you can view statistics about you and about your work.
- Alerts and favorites?
Here is where the stories and authors you have added to your favorites are listed. You can also view those stories/authors you have put on your alert lists. Those on the favorites list will appear on your Favorites page of your profile. For those listed on your alert list, you will receive an email notifying you the story/author has updated.
- Fics/Art Section?
See also, Uploading Stories and Uploading Art
Here is where you manage your stories and artwork.
- How do I upload a new story?
From your Members Control Panel (MemCP), choose 'Manage Documents'. Here, you will upload your file into your Scrapbook. Please note that currently UR.org can only accept plain text or html files, not .doc files.
Once you've uploaded the file to your Scrapbook, you can click on 'Create Story'. You will be prompted for story information, such as title, chapter title, summary, characters, rating, and genre.
- How do I update or edit my story?
From your MemCP, choose 'Manage Stories'. You're screen will list your currently posted stories with the options of 'add chapter', 'edit', or 'delete'.
To add a chapter, you must have the chapter uploaded into your scrapbook.
To edit, you can choose to edit the information about the story or each chapter individually. Please remember to hit save when you are done.
- How do I upload my art?
From your MemCP, click 'Upload Art'. You will be prompted to select the art you are choosing to upload. Art must be in .gif, .jpg or .png. Pictures bigger than 800 x 1000 pixels will be resized.
Once uploaded, you will be prompted to input information on the art, including title, explanation, character, and rating (no NC-17 art allowed).
- How do I edit my fanart?
From your MemCP, click 'Manage Art'. Here, you can edit or delete your pictures.
Reviewing is an essential part of writing fan fiction. Every writer wants feedback and at UR.org we hope the readers can do just that, offer constructive criticism and feedback. For more information on how to leave useful reviews, see our essays/columns section under Education.
- What is the four-question survey at the end of leaving a reveiw?
To aid in useful feedback, UR.org has a simple survey for reviewers to complete when leaving their review. The questions are general, but can give an author an idea on where they're at overall in their writing. The more people that complete the survey, and the more reviews received with the completed survey, the better feedback the author is receiving. The surveys are anonymous.
- How do I view the results of the survey?
To view the results of the surveys, click on 'Reviews' from your MemCP and click on 'Survey Results'.
- As a writer, how do I reply to my reviews?
From your MemCP, choose 'Reviews'. Click on 'manage reviews' of the story of your choosing. From here, you can view all reviews made for that story and may either respond to the reviewer or delete the review.
Copyright Basics and Rules for UR.org
- What is copyright?
Copyright is a legal device that provides the creator of a work of art or literature, or a work that conveys information or ideas, the right to control how the work is used. The Copyright Act of 1976 grants authors exclusive rights, including reproduction rights, distribution rights, right to create adaptations or derivatives, and performance and display rights. If someone wrongfully uses the material covered by the copyright, the copyright owner can sue and obtain compensation for any losses suffered. Copyright protection begins automatically the moment a work is set to paper or otherwise fixed in a tangible form. Copyright doesn't cover facts or ideas, only those words used by the author to express those facts or ideas. Distinctive words, phrases, logos, symbols, names, and titles aren't covered by copyright (Â©) protection but trademark (Â®) protection.
- What does copyright mean for me?
It means any usage of works not written by you can be considered copyright infringement. Unless the work is in Public Domain, you've received expressed permission to use the work, or it would be considered to be in fair-use boundaries, you can be held legally responsible.
- Public Domain
Copyright protection runs out eventually. (for more information on how long copyright protection covers works and when works become public domain, visit www.copyright.gov) Any works published before the year 1923 are considered public domain. This means the works are free to be used as wished without needing expressed permission.
Fair-Use is the conditions under which one can use copyrighted material without paying royalties. Four factors go into deciding whether a work in question is being used within fair-use guidelines.
 the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes
 the nature of the copyrighted work
 amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole
 the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work
Although it is not always clear whether or not your usage will fall under fair-use guidelines, it is always best to keep this in mind when deciding to use someone else's work.
The amount of the portion allowed can vary from one piece of work to another, as well as from one court case to another. There is no legal limit for fair use, however the more you use, the less fair use it becomes. The key is to only use what is necessary (i.e. keep it to a minimum) and to always cite the author (or who owns the copyright) properly.
- So what does this all mean? Can I use song lyrics or quotes from books or poems?
The answer is, for the most part, yes. Some authors have explicitly declined any usage of their work without expressed permission. However, most authors and works are eligible for fair-use usage.
Unknowableroom.org allows usage of other's work only if the following guidelines are used.
Unless proof of explicit permission can be produced, usage must follow these guidelines. Any work suspect of being out of lines is subject to Unknowableroom's Wizengamot.
1. Song lyric portions (as well as passages from books, poems, and ect.) will be kept to a minimum amount. Comparative to length, one verse shall be sufficient.
2. All works not that of the artist must be cited with proper homage given to the rightful owner of the borrowed work. Plagiarism is a serious offense and Unknowableroom will not tolerate it in any form.
3. Works will not be an accumulation of borrowed text. Although stories on Unknowableroom are fanfiction and therefore based on another's work, the Unknowableroom's member/author is expected to write original pieces based on HARRY POTTERÂ©.
- Are song-fics allowed?
Unfortunately, song-fics, by nature would not fall under fair-use guidelines. Using lyrics to a song in their entirety, and therefore using the entire work, without permission could be subject to copyright infringement. Unless the fan fiction author owns the lyrics, or the author can provide proof of explicate permission, it is not allowed.
- Are photomanipulations allowed?
Photomanipulations are not original works of art; therefore, they are not permitted in the fanart section of Unknowableroom. You may post photomanipulations in the photomanipulation forum of Unknowableroom, as long as the original photographer/location of the photograph is properly cited.
For further information on copyright laws, please visit www.copyright.gov.
General Site Questions
- What are those dots by the usernames?
The dot system was constructed so that members could show the ways in which they participate around the site. A small incentive that brightens up the username.
- Light Blue dot = paid account
- Dark Blue dot = permanent account
- Purple dot = site administrator
- Dark Red dot = Scrivenshaft Award Winner
- Light Red dot = Hourglass Award Winner