Burke Rukes (god_of_gundams@hotmail.com)
Tue, 11 Apr 2000 12:59:41 CDT

Hello everyone,

Aaron writes,

>If Bandai starts shutting down Gundam fan sites like the Supereb Mecha
>Domain, they better start making all the Gundam books in English, so there
>will a source to get the info. that isn't in each TV series.
>If this rumor becomes true, I hope its a sign of a total US Gundam
>The more popular Gundam gets in the US, will help create a need for more
>Gundam goods in America :) I am a huge book reader and would love to have
>English language versions of the spin off/side story Gundam novels.

Okay, it looks like I've unintentionally set off a bunch of alarm bells when
it wasn't necessary, and I do need to set the record straight. Mark Simmons
even gave me a much-deserved slap on the wrist (and my apologies, Mark).
Guess I should follow my own advice of not opening my mouth and sticking my
big, smelly foot into it. My "Important Announcement" is being rewritten
right now so that it won't be misinterpreted and send out the wrong signals.
  I honestly didn't expect THIS much reaction, though considering how
"rumors" become "fact" through increased repeatings, I should've known

Anyway, here are the RUMORS (rumors being purely gossip and speculation that
has yet to be backed up by actual evidence):

1) It is rumored that Bandai/Sunrise has shut down, or is trying to shut
down, one or more fan-run Gundam web sites.

And here are the FACTS:

1) I definitely will NOT be doing any more regular updates to The Mecha
Domain. I do have some more Gundam and VOTOMS material to put up there, but
it may be awhile before I get around to it.
2) The Mecha Domain WILL stay online as long as it can/does/will. It's all
purely at the whim of Bandai/Sunrise, and where or not the rumor about them
shutting down fan web sites turns out to be true. I'm not going to fret
over it anymore.
3) I AM in the pre-planning stages of a new mecha-related web site. I
approached Mark Simmons to ask for his help - particularly in the area of
doing brief summaries/writeups of mecha - and he has indicated his
interest... however, he and I do not know for certain yet what his level of
involvement will be, if any (he is quite the busy guy, and I can't blame him
at all if he just can't find the time). Either way, a new web site WILL be
coming, one which will feature all-original, fan-made "homebrew" lineart,
more detailed tech specs and descriptions of mecha, and galleries of mecha
fanart from readers like you. :)

Okay, I hope that clears it up. I'm not one to give out marching orders,
but everyone, PLEASE don't go blabbing that "Bandai's been shutting down fan
web sites," and "they're going after Burke soon." _I_ don't need any of
that, YOU don't need any of that, and the anime fandom community in general
doesn't need any of that... God knows there's enough rumor-based garbage
going around already. Bandai has NOT shut down any web sites yet - as far
as I know - and it's hard to say if they ever will. I'm just personally
concerned that with Gundam becoming more commercial and more popular in
North America, that it may have these kinds of reprecussions on American
fans in the future. I'm just looking to cover myself legally while doing
something fun and different with a new web site. Everyone, PLEASE don't go
running for the hills... keep your web sites up! Keep having fun and do
what you want to do with your sites! I honestly think that there's room
enough on the Web for BOTH official companies and fans... just remember that
the companies have all the money and the lawyers. ^_^ Give the companies
credit where it's due, promote them, support them, buy their products, but
don't let rumors like this stop you from having fun! Why do you think I'm
starting a new web site? It's gonna be FUN, and frankly I'm pretty BORED
with The Mecha Domain right now.

Mabye I should have just kept my mouth closed on the rumor bit. I sincerely
apologize to EVERYONE - to all the fans, to Mark Simmons, and to
Bandai/Sunrise (I would really hate for any kind of backlash to hit
Bandai/Sunrise because of this, I need them to keep cranking out new Gundam
material for me! ^_^) - for unintentionally helping to spread this seemingly
false rumor and causing any kind of uproar. I just thought it would be fair
to explain ALL of my reasons for discontinuing regular work on The Mecha
Domain. I guess now I should have kept some of those reasons to myself.

Take care, everyone!

-Burke "Burkenator" Rukes

The Mecha Domain Mark-II - http://mechadomain.gundam.com

"You can't fight City Hall, but you can goddamn sure blow it up!" - George

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