Guide To The Simpsons On The Net
Most of the major Simpsons fan sites were issued cease & desist
orders in 1997, but that didn't discourage the webmasters at
all. Shannon Picken re-opened Picks' Tribute to the Simpsons in
November 1997, minus the multimedia. The owner of Sector 7G went
on to create a similar page named Evergreen Terrace, which
offered streaming .MP3's. The Definitive Frink and Uhl's Simpson
Sound Archive returned to the web in 1998. And the original
Simpsons Sourcebook received 3 C&D's from Fox before removing
their content, but the site continued to please fans. There was
definitely life after Fox.
On the verge of closing
its doors for good, The Simpsons Archive was completely revamped in early 1998
and became more popular than ever. In addition, many new
webmasters created wonderful tributes to OFF in '98. Eric Wirtanen set to carry
the mission of the original Evergreen Terrace with a site with the same name.
down, a new Simpsons Sourcebook was born, offering hundreds of pictures, sounds,
and movies. Adam Wolf's fan site started offering hundreds of pictures and sounds.
And the largest multimedia archive of all time, "I Can't Believe it's a
Simpsons Site!", was reborn. These new media warehouses offered much more
content than the Simpsons websites of the mid 90's. Unfortunately, Fox took notice.
HERE WE GO AGAIN
1998 was awful quiet. Simpsons webmasters began to think that
Fox had finally given up, and that sites like FIST had done the
damage. Unfortunately, we were all wrong. The popular Homer
Archive was ordered to remove its content in January of '99.
People began to think this single letter was a fluke, until the
summer arrived. Within three days in August, Last Exit To
Springfield, The Simpsons Sourcebook, and Simpsons Surplus all
received C&D orders. Webmasters were taken completely by
surprise and fans were outraged.
Evergreen Terrace was hit with its first Cease and Desist in September.
Eric e-mailed Fox and told
them he would comply with their requests, shutting down the page at its former
URL, but little to their knowledge packed his
bags and moved the site to Milpool.com. They did eventually
track the site down though, and the page was issued its 2nd C&D in
December. Meanwhile, Last Exit To Springfield received a 3rd
letter from Fox around the same time, and removed its 'illegal'
content "for good". Later that month Eric had the chance to talk to
Fox's legal representive, Dennis Wilson, over the phone. He
reiterated that all copyright infringements would need to be
removed ASAP or Fox would take legal action. The dumb
thing was that during the conversation he seemed to be making up
things as he went along. Eric says "He asked me what Winamp skins were, and
after a short pause he stated "They'll have to go." I personally
have no idea what Fox considers to be a violation anymore. It
seems they simply don't want anything related to The Simpsons to
be on your computer. It's ridiculous."
Fox didn't stop
with Evergreen Terrace. Futurama fan sites such as The Futurama Archive were
dealt blows, and many smaller Simpsons sites were targeted in late
1999 and 2000. Fox even issued a C&D to the definitive multimedia warehouse,
ICBIASS.com. After refusing to comply with Fox's orders, ICBIASS's host deleted
the page for good.
Simpsons fans and followers of other Fox shows are becoming
furious due to all this. Two "fan blackouts" took place that
year to show Fox what the 'net would be like without fan sites, but in a way
that basically gave them what they wanted.