You would think by now that I would know better than to search online randomly about fandom. Nonetheless, I found myself doing that very thing this week. Anything new out there about fandom that I missed during the election season? Anything that I could read to avoid doing the grading that I desperately need to do? In my attempts to procrastinate, I came across a blog on Tumblr entitled, “Damn Fandom Problems.” You can see the blog for yourself here. I couldn’t help myself. I had to look.
My first reaction to this blog page is that there are a lot of people who have complaints about fandom and their fan communities. As I began to scan the long list of posts, I noticed that the owner of the blog mentioned how overhwhelmed they were. Clearly, they hit a nerve by starting a site like this. A lot of people get frustrated with their fellow fans. So, I skimmed through some of the more recent entries and noticed that a lot of fans were focused on TV shows and that their problems focused on what they thought about various characters or which couples they shipped (supported) and how others viewed them as a result. Part of me felt relief that this was not our fan community. We don’t have debates about the band members, for example. That being said, I do understand having opinions about creative decisions. We have that in common. While the fans on that site argued about creative decisions by the writers of these shows, we debate musical directions of various songs and albums. Then, I decided to do some searching to see if there was any mention of Duran or problems that are more common to our fan community.
There were no posts specific to Duran Duran or Duranies that I could find, which was not surprising. I did type in competition as I think that is an area where our fan community has struggled some in the past. You know…the idea that one fan is better or bigger than another fan. Apparently, our fan community is not the only one who deals with that. The response that I found was exactly what you might expect. Do not compete. No one is better than the other. We are part of a fan community. While that response left me disappointed, I couldn’t even articulate why. Was I expecting some grand solution? Not really but I guess a part of me hoped for it.
Then, as I skimmed more I realized that it has been a long time for me to feel like my fandom had problems. It has been a long time to be on the receiving end of criticism or worse. I know that our November fan of the month was sad to see that someone disliked the Vodka Friday that featured her awesome self. It did not bother me much. Have I just become immune to the criticism? To the negative? That could be. I also wonder if it isn’t a sign that I have not been as engaged in the fan community as much as I have in the past. While I think that is true, I’m just not seeing as much activity on my social media from members of our fan community. Are more and more Duranies moving on? Or are they just avoiding social media? Then, I realize that our biggest problem right now is keeping our fan community active. I wonder if that site has any advice for that.