Everyone claims that they evaluate a book, or movie, or other work of art based on the quality of the work, and not the identity of who made it. But that isn’t true. A woman writes a Star Trek-inspired story in which characters who were not involved romantically on screen are, or the characters cross-over with the characters of another fictional series, and it’s relegated to fanfic archives and looked down upon by serious people. A guy who has had several science fiction novels published writes a Star Trek-inspired story in which the fictional characters cross-over into the real world and discover a strange relationship between the real and fictional world, and it’s awarded a Hugo.
Knowing who did it changes our perception of the quality and importance of the work. Even though we don’t like to admit it.
fontfolly on origination bias.
Incidentally, fandom itself is just as guilty of this as anyone else. It’s like, protip guys. If you want to complain about fanfic being “better” than mainstream fiction because it has more x representation, don’t subsequently use “it’s like bad fanfic!” as your go-to insult for any professionally produced work containing said representation.