Culture & Community
Note: This article is wholly an opinion piece with my perspective as an outside party observing the different communities that I have made contact with. I have no official affiliation with these groups, I am simply an observer.
Miscommunications and false impressions can result in unnecessary conflict. Nothing quite encapsulates this than the SCP vs RPC rivalry. Two groups of containment fiction, similar in many aspects yet different in the most important of ways, seemingly forever enwrapped in a twisted cycle of heresy and criticism. Of course, this cycle all begins with the root foundation of the RPC Authority’s creation.
To give a simple recap, the RPC Authority was birthed from the June 2018 “SCP Pride Logo” Fiasco with the loudest members of this budding community unfortunately being the more… toxic type of person. This sadly painted this entire new community as a bunch of bigots who wish to keep their fictional science organization as "straight" as possible. Unbeknownst to the greater SCP community, these members have since been fizzled out, and since it's creation over three years ago, the RPC Authority has become a completely unique and inclusive group, boasting its own LGBT writers and key players such as Almarduk.
Yet, the average SCP reader would never know, or even think, to look into the RPC Authority, the general consensus still being that RPC is just the homophobic, knock-off of SCP and not a completely unique, stand-alone containment fiction work to dig into. Conversely the average RPC reader knows about SCP, but chooses not to associate because of a perceived air of judgement and pretentious arrogance that the SCP community sadly displays.
Not to say that being fans of both is impossible or unheard of, as even noted SCP media makers, such as The Volgun, have made art and projects for both SCP and RPC. In this author’s opinion, why would you limit yourself to only one fiction? Spread your horizons and seek something new.
However, this “one sided mirror” view amongst confic communities isn’t limited to just “fiction about shadow organizations containing monsters and magic”. Newer groups to the scene have this issue too.
A more recent example of rivalries stemmed from rocky separations is the Backrooms Wiki and the Liminal Archives -- so called "second wave confic". These are two groups whose split and formations give us a possible real-time view of a large community warring (seemingly) with a small splintering faction. Like history repeating itself, we see SCP and RPC once more in Backrooms and Liminal Archive. The surface distinction? Politics. The bigger difference? Purpose.
RPC split from SCP with a desire to return to SCP’s roots, to focus on more simple horror, to bring in a more concrete canon, and to take a step back to serious clinical articles. Sadly these points got originally overshadowed by the misconstruction that the Pride Logo was the only motive, but now, the purpose is clearer and better articulated. Additionally, practically anything going on at RPC within a few months of its creation is somewhat of an isolated event; analogous and not dissimilar at all to formative months of the SCP from 4chan's /x/ board, and that shouldn't be taken as definitive. The Liminal Archives splitting from Backrooms? To expand beyond the scope of “backroom space” to the larger definitive "liminal space"-- again, to return to sort of original visions, as it were.
While the RPC had years to grow and mature into the culture it is today, Liminal Archives is still relatively new (founded in December of 2020) and the Backrooms Wikidot is not much older (created in March 2020). Time will tell how these two disgruntled confic twin progenies grow. Will they continue the path their predecessors SCP and RPC took as two walled cities who do not wish to see each other, or will they become like the SCP and the Wanderer’s Library; connected, complementary, family, yet independent?
I am a hopeful being, so I am leaning more towards a cooperative future. But, as I’ve stated, only time will tell.
A Confic scholar,
Dr. Fern. AKA. Fernlom
Visit Fernlom's Tumblr: https://fernlom.tumblr.com
Visit the Liminal Archives article on The Confic Wiki: https://www.containmentfiction.net/wiki/liminal-archives/
Join the Society for Containment Fiction Discord to be in on the greater confic discussion: https://discord.gg/j7HHZ5TPwB
(Help Wanted! The Backrooms Wiki article is in development. Any help or contributions are welcome! Visit https://www.containmentfiction.net, head to the Forums to sign up, and visit the UserWiki to contribute.)
Note: The Backrooms Wiki is not to be confused with this!