OTW Fannews: Fannish practices

Banner by caitie utilizing tags from AO3

  • The San Francisco Examiner reported on gay fans’ annual Buffy celebrations. “It was the geeky gay holiday party of the year. ‘Gay men love the show because it shows strength in places that don’t follow stereotypical societal or heterosexual norms,’ Byrd said. ‘When getting to know people, I typically out myself as a die-hard ‘Buffy’ fan. Rarely has a gay person not seen at least one episode of the show.’ The article quotes media and religion scholar Anthony R. Mills who suggests “‘Real-life practices like attending conventions and screenings create important social interactions; the continuous re-watching of episodes, both communal and individual, functions as religious ritual.'”
  • Blogger Sean Kleefeld observed the similar behavior of television and comics fans. “It’s not uncommon now for not only fans to get together to watch in groups, but there are even bars and restaurants that host Scandal viewing parties. Comics, by contrast, have long been seen as a solitary pursuit. After all, part of the nature of reading is that the individual is free to take in the narrative at their own pace.” However the viewing behavior of fans was different from casual TV viewers. “Taking in the story is, despite the pacing being at the discretion of someone other than the reader her/himself, an intensely personal experience. Even if everyone in the room is sharing that same experience. It would be like you and all your friends reading a copy of the same comic at the same time — you’re all seeing the same story, albeit with slightly different pacing, but the reading experience is very personal. It’s only after you all finish that you can socialize your thoughts and feelings about it.”
  • The Daily Dot looked at examples of fannish tagging on AO3. “[W]hen you take a stroll through its ‘freeform’ tags, the tags that aren’t about categorization and are all about having fun, you meet with a repository of creativity formed somewhere between ‘shameless self-gratification’ and ‘ideas that sounded great when I was high.’ Thankfully, the Twitter account @TagsofAO3 is here to catalog the best of the best.”
  • The Atlantic discussed How Fanzines Helped Put Doctor Who Fans in Charge of Doctor Who. “Who offers an case study in the way that modern fandom has evolved. The fanzines where Capaldi and others got their start may have seen their numbers decline over the years, but their DNA is all over the modern fandom in a way that distinguishes it from other sci-fi fanzine communities like that of Star Trek. Doctor Who fanzines not only helped keep the fandom alive during its hiatus, they’ve been a long-standing venue for fans to debate and police the limits of the Doctor Who universe—and these debates have had a direct and noticeable influence on the show itself.”

What fannish practices have you noticed? Write about them on Fanlore! Contributions are welcome from all fans.

We want your suggestions! If you know of an essay, video, article, podcast, or link you think we should know about, comment on the most recent OTW Fannews post. Links are welcome in all languages! Submitting a link doesn’t guarantee that it will be included in a roundup post, and inclusion of a link doesn’t mean that it is endorsed by the OTW.