Apocrypha is a term used to refer to material or content which is generally seen as less authoritative, or questionable in origin, nature or content. Sometimes this refers to the source or authorship of the material, sometimes to the authority and veracity of its content.
For the purposes of the Visionary Universe Wiki, apocryphal material, or simply apocrypha, refers to any material which has not been confirmed as canon material. Canon material is content, facts, events, concepts, etc. which have been clearly shown in published or distributed Visionary Universe productions. That content, once revealed, or established in published work, thus becomes authoritative and establishes itself as 'fact' in the Visionary Universe.
Story-based Apocrypha Edit
This form of apocryphal material is any material first referenced in the actual contents of a story. It is classified as apocrypha if the reference is of events not directly witnessed, such as a character referring to their backstory, or writings mentioned in the context of a story that reveal certain beliefs, theories or 'facts', but no evidence is provided. This type of apocrypha may be disproven or shown to be false as new information is later revealed.
Reference Originated Apocrypha Edit
By the very nature of the Visionary Universe Wiki, readers and fans are invited to add original creative content and in so doing, create reference originated apocrypha. In the spirit of the wiki project and true collaboration, the mutual understanding is that when such material is created for the sake of the reference, and done so following the guidelines and intent of the wiki, it will be considered respectfully canon until overwhelming reason, debate or other cause requires it to be changed.
Supplementary Material Apocrypha Edit
This is the preferred type of apocryphal material. Suppplementary material is, in general, any contribution which enriches or deepens the knowledge and insights of an existing character or other concept's history, background or detail.
More specifically, by way of example, this could refer to material created in the wiki which outlines a character's favorite foods, family tree, or the previously unrevealed cultural traditions of a race or species. These types of references are generally non-story oriented, and more supplementary material oriented. This would be contrasted with material which references never before revealed characters or major events, items best left revealed in the stories themselves, which will generally not fit within the confines of the reference and will be removed.
When creating supplementary material the intent of the wiki is to maintain that information as accurate, thus canon, unless it was mistaken originally, or would be conflicted by elements or stories already in planning.
Speculative Apocrypha Edit
This type of apocrypha is more intentional apocryphal material that pushes the limits of the reference. It is when content intentionally projects the future or past of the focus of an article, such as a character, land, object, or group. This type of apocrypha takes elements, hints, subtle facts revealed and uses them as a base to either guess at mysteries or secrets about the source, or to project forward or backward in the history of the source.
Apocryphal Entries Edit
These are all-original, non-canon related entries that do not necessarily conform to the guidelines and policies, or relate to any established canon material. These are the most extreme form of apocrypha and are filed under their own category (Category:Apocryphal Entries), isolated from the bulk of the project.
General Comments Edit
In general, apocryphal material will be open to discussion and debate until final decisions are made from moderators, or facts are more clearly established in a published or produced project. Apocryphal material of all types generated within the reference itself is done with the understanding that it may either be eventually deleted when disproven, or may actually fall in line with actual plans for a concept or property in the Visionary Universe, and that in such cases, the intent of the material most likely pre-existed any such speculation.
Additional Resources Edit
- Apocryphal Policy: An article which details guidelines and rules for including apocryphal material
- Category:Apocryphal Entries: A Category listing of specifically created apocryphal entries
- Canon and Canon Policy: Detailed articles on the flip-side of Apocrypha
- Wikipedia Article on Apocrypha: This focuses on Biblical Apocrypha, or apocryphal writings which is where the general use of the term derives