Purism, Purists and Canonicity
What exactly is Purism?
For Purists, the show comes first. What you see in the show, what you hear, take precedence over everything else. The TV episodes were first and therefore are canon. All else are derivative works. As such all later works must not, cannot, contradict what is seen and heard in the TV show. For this reason, Purists do not consider the Role Playing Game, the Novels and the Comics to be decent adaptation of the shows, for each changes fundamental sections of the show through either their own necessity of storylin or through simple innacuracy.
Does this mean Purists look down on any news stories?
Not at all. But it does mean that stories that suddenly decide that Lisa died on the bridge of the SDF-1 will not be considered part of the Robotech Purist's Universe.
Doesn't Purism restrict a writer's artistic freedom?
No. The Protoculture War page and its associate sister-page prove that it is more than possible to write Robotech stories that stay true to the stated basis of Robotech (ie, the show). Anyone who tells you otherwise simply do not understand the ideals of Purism.
What is this 'Canonicity' I keep hearing about?
can'on, n. General law governing treatment of a subject; criterion; list of recognised genuine works of a particular author (the Shakespearian ~); [OE, from Latin from Greek kanon rule (Kanna CANE); in ME re-introduced from Old French canun, -on]
This definition is out of the 1974 Concise Oxford Dictionary (ommiting all the Church references given). Canon is used to indicate work that have a recognised standing. Thus, in Robotech, the TV series is canon and the Graphic Novel Genesis Robotech and movie Robotech: The Untold Story are held as semi-canon by some due to Macek's influence in their creation.
The Role-Playing Game, Novels and Comics contradict these canonical works and are thus not recognised by the Purist community.
I hope this brief description of Purism and Canon has been of some help to you.