OTW Fannews: Fandom in the world

  • Media studies professor Henry Jenkins posted a three part discussion of Chinese fan culture at his blog. He interviews Xiqing Zheng, a PhD candidate studying the topic, asking such questions as: “You suggest that Chinese fans often see themselves as belonging to an elite group. In some other parts of the world, fans are considered anything but because of the low cultural status of the materials they embrace. In what ways have Chinese Otaku sought to legitimate their interests and activities through appeals to elite cultural status?”
  • NPR suggested that Netflix will change TV viewing because releasing a full season all at once will change “[t]he way we talk about what we watch, the way we share, the way reviewers critique shows, and even the ad model — everything will have to change.” The discussion focused largely on the commercial interests of ad sellers and critics. Left out of the discussion is how many fans around the world have binge watched seasons since the days of sharing shows through videotape, often cross-nationally when shows were not available in their viewing areas, and how this helped create wider communities around the shows.
  • Writing at AfterEllen, Dana Piccoli discussed femslash ships in European shows. “One thing I’ve learned during my travels as a gay lady is that if there is lesbian content somewhere, lesbians will find it. If there were a show with a lesbian character being broadcast solely from the North Pole, there would be an Olivia cruise ship full of lesbians on its way there right now.”
  • AlJazeera’s show The Stream aired an episode asking “Can online fandom make the world a better place?” Former board member Francesca Coppa was among the guests who discussed fan activism and online mobilization. Although no transcript is available, the episode has a Storify page.

What stories can you tell about fandom around the world? Post them 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.