both sides now

First fanvid ever was this "Star Trek" slideshow

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Today, fandom is a defining characteristic of Internet culture. But one of the most popular expressions of fan culture online, the fanvid, actually began in 1975, long before the World Wide Web was even invented.

At ROFLcon’s Fangirl Culture discussion, panelists commemorated Kandy Fong, the Star Trek fangirl who is generally regarded as the first fanvidder, a person who remixes footage from her favorite shows and sets it to music.

In 1975, without access to even a VCR, Fong took Star Trek footage from the cutting room floor and compiled it into a slideshow. The result was the video below, entitled “Both Sides Now,” after the song sung by actor Leonard Nimoy.

Fangirls have never been content to simply absorb their favorite media. As a result of their creative efforts, the Internet offers an endless variety of remixed and transformative works based on books, TV shows, movies, games, and more.

But while the Internet popularized and democratized remix culture, fangirl creations actually predated it. Long before YouTube and the DVD player made it possible for anyone to become a video editor, fangirls were already finding ways to remix TV shows into fanvids.

Fanvids have come a long way since Fong blazed the trail. For contrast, “the most famous fanvid ever” is generally considered to be “Closer,” a 2004 collaborative effort by fangirls TJonesey and Killa. The NSFW video implies a homoerotic relationship between Spock and Captain Kirk.

Photo via Blip.tv