OTW Fannews: Examining fan activities

  • A post on The MarySue took a more psychological look at the “Fake Geek Girl” syndrome. “The theory of microaggressions was developed back in the 70′s to denote racial stereotyping, but was expanded by psychologist Derald Wing Sue, Ph.D. in 2007 to encompass a wide variety and classifications of these subtle and seemingly harmless expressions that communicate ‘hostile, derogatory, or negative slights and insults’ toward people who aren’t members of the ingroup. These outgroup members might include women, racial/ethnic minorities, LBGT members, and others historically marginalized in our community.” Author Dr. Andrea Letamendi explained the anger such behavior can engender. “The feelings of being threatened, invalidated, and overlooked can happen to any one of us in this community–some psychologists argue that when the threats are ambiguous or subtle (like microaggressions), they can be more damaging because there is no certainty and the assault is denied or ignored.”
  • More complaints about sexism arose in response to a documentary on Bronie fandom. “What do you get when fans decide to make a documentary about their own fandom? In the case of the Bronies—fans of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic—the answer seems to be erasure and exclusion. So say some fandom critics of the recently released documentary Bronies: The Extremely Unexpected Adult Fans of My Little Pony. Not everyone in the Brony fandom is happy about the newly launched documentary. Female fans are already planning their own documentary in response, to give a more inclusive portrayal of fans—particularly the female sector of the Brony population, which many fans claim was virtually ignored.”
  • Another fan documentary fundraising on Kickstarter will be focusing on the makers of fan films. In a chat with OTW staff, co-producer Joey Rassool discussed the project’s focus. “We hope to show several things: 1) Why fan films tend to be more accurate to the source material than their hollywood equivalents, 2) Why even greatly funded fan films still end up with problems, 3) What these creators, especially the ones working out of their own pockets, have to sacrifice to bring their art to life, and 4) What kind of person is willing and capable of making those sacrifices.” Asked how he thought a view of fan film makers might map onto the work that other fans do in other mediums, he replied “I find that film is a shockingly tricky art form for fan made content because of the amount of time, energy, people, and finances that have to go into it to generate a final product. But I hope that our film can show everyone that creates fan based content that any amount of effort is worth it for the final result.” They also plan to focus on how fans “manage the aspects of filmmaking. Most fan films are made by crews and directors with little to no big budget experience, and the introduction of crowd funding can put a lot of money into some fairly unseasoned hands. This means that things can go wrong at almost any turn.”

What examinations of My Little Pony, fangirls or fandoms have caught your attention? Tell us about it in 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.