Tiers of Canon
Main Article: Contents Guide
There are several tiers of canon, running from most important to least. This means that if there are conflicts or contradictions in the information from different sources then the higher canon source will be considered the correct one, although the conflict can of course be mentioned in the notes or references of an article. Whenever there are conflicts or contradictions in the information from the same tier of canon, the most recent piece of information is canon.
- 1. The Show : Salem itself and any other information that comes directly from Adam Simon or Brannon Braga. This includes script releases/episode transcripts as long as they follow the aired show exactly.
- 2. Deleted scenes: Scenes from Salem that were written and/or filmed but never aired, original drafts of scripts, etc
- 3. Officially-licensed sources of information: the social networks (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram).
- 4. Trusted news sources: Well known or respected news sources such as newspapers, magazines and their websites.
Non- canon contents
Fan fiction is almost never regarded as canonical. However, certain ideas may become influential or widely accepted within fan communities, who refer to such ideas as "fanon", a portmanteau of fan and canon. An example of fanon contents on Salem Wikia are the names of the powers.
In History section is the only part of the page where contents not strictly related to the show's mythology are allowed, as this section has the task of providing an overall picture of the historical facts, historical figures or legends and beliefs that have given life to their fictional counterparts (eg. Cotton Mather (historical) or a description of witchcraft in history, different from the description given on the show).
A different approach is used about the so-called powers. Since in WGN Salem the vast majority of powers do not have a proper name but are generally referred to as tricks or powers, it was decided to use mainstream names taken from paranormal fiction and parapsychology, so that a better understanding and dialogue among fans and readers is possible. The names of the powers are chosen by mutual agreement using the one that best describes the power in question and not bizarre or little known names.
Wherever an article has a non-canon name, it is indicated by a flag on top of the page itself, that says the following: "Although this article is based on canonical information, the actual name of this subject is conjectural."
How to deal with fanon
- Fanon contents should be expressed only in the forum, explicitly saying that they are personal theories and are not spoilers or by passing them as proven facts. Do not create unnecessary confusion or false expectations to other viewers who may take your headcanons as canon facts.
- The main pages are designed as a guide to fans interested in the show, not to support your theories.
- Fanon content should not be used to strengthen one's own thesis during an argument, because it is not canon material shared by all participants in the discussion.
- When you are about to talk about a character, an episode, a creature or power in the comment section it is good to do it using the guidelines provided in the show as a first resort, and only then, if you are able, to make a comparison of the same topic dealt in different narrative universes (eg. Buffyverse deities vs Salem deities). Talking about Mary Sibley using as a yardstick the powers of the Halliwell sisters from Charmed is not the best way to describe the character, because these witches are different in physiology, power sources etc. so it's easy to fall into confusion.
- Fanon contents, like any other type of comment, should not be written countless times in the comment sections, as they will be considered as spam. See: Rules/Comments and Chat Policy.