A personal canon (or a more limited personal continuity) is one fan's interpretation of the Transformers mythos. This can range from picking and choosing stories and characters that he or she favors and assembling them as he or she likes, to discarding one or two distasteful properties from an otherwise accepted continuity. A personal canon can also be various events from different universes brought together into one single storyline (eg. G1 and the Unicron Trilogy in the same universe).
This is often used in fan-fiction, where an author will use an established continuity up until a certain point, from which he or she would start telling their own stories. Motivations for these stories can range from a desire to retcon another story that the author dislikes, or to curiously pursue a 'what if' continuity based on a key event happening in some different way.
On a more simple level, personal canon can refer to an individual fan's overall preference for certain interpretations of the Transformers mythos over multiple continuities, such as saying "Quintessons are cool, as long as they didn't create the Transformers", or the acceptance/assumption of the popular retcon that Transformers have sparks in all timelines.
For example, one's personal canon could be:
- The first two seasons of the Generation One animated series, but not including the movie or subsequent seasons.
- One's fan-favourite characters from The Transformers: The Movie survived their would-be fatal wounds.
- Renaming toys after pre-existing characters, such as considering Energon Shockblast to be Generation One Shockwave.
- Disregarding one animated-series origin of the Constructicons for another (or concocting a way for them to work together somehow).
- Merging elements of the Dreamwave comics version of Armada with the animated cartoon's.
- Accepting Marvel's Generation 2 comics as "true" except for the death of a specific character (for example, Nightbeat).
- Regarding Decepticons being descended from the Liege Maximo or Quintesson military hardware (and thus being intrinsically evil) as antithetical to the concept of the Civil War being political and that wartime factions were chosen through the exercise of free will.
- Accepting everything in every known Transformers continuity having happened as a single jumbled entity, ignoring the inconsistencies as "gray areas" that one mustn't be concerned with. (This, coincidentally, appears to be Takara's personal canon.)
- Not considering the Cybertron series to be in the same continuity as the Armada and Energon series.
- Considering one's own (or somebody else's) fan fiction as a part of continuity.
And so on. There are, of course, infinite possibilities.