Over at 無礼講⇒ナイト, Kimitsu posted a blog entry entitaled “The Bad, the Worse, and the Ugly” regarding the idol fandom, and what makes a bad fan. So for this post, I’ll categorize each item Kimitsu posted into my bad, worse, and ugly, and say which ones I would fit under, because I can assure you that I probably fit under some. (These will be in italics)
Is it a person who is delusional regarding the subject of their fandom, such that they believe s/he is their *~*ONE TRUE RABU*~* and may even stalk her/him, if the option is available? Sure, this is annoying, disturbing, and illegal in the stalking case, but it’s not really too bad. It just means that someone has gotten to such a creepy level of fandom that they have become what one might describe as insane. I personally find people like this annoying and crazy, but bad fans, no.
Is it a person who likes only one part of the whole, instead of the whole? I don’t consider this to be bad at all, but since this was the least intense category, it was where it had to be put. I don’t like all of Hello!Project, but I still consider myself a fan. I suppose that I like more than just one part, but I can even stand a few songs from the parts that I don’t like. It doesn’t mean that I’m a bad fan, or that anyone like this is, because they’re at least a fan.
Is it a person who, despite being a fan, abuses language in their fanhood? This, again is extremely annoying. I hate it when people are typing in English, and then randomly add “Kawaiii” or “kakoi” to their sentences. It might just be that I’m a grammar freak to some extent, but I find it really annoying. I don’t think that it makes anyone a bad fan, but if you’re going to randomly insert a word in a foreign language at least spell it right.
Is it a person who may like the fandom in question, but are very outspoken regarding parts they do not like? This is totally me. I think that this does make someone a bad fan, because fans should be free to not like what they don’t like, in my case, Risako and bad costuming/costume designers, they shouldn’t speak out about it and bash that person or thing. I’m trying not to hate on parts of the fandom that I don’t like, but sometimes, it becomes inevitable that I will. (I don’t think that many people mind my costume-bashing, though.) This is my fan New Year’s resolution, not hating on any idols.
Is it a person who thinks that they have the right to judge who is a “true” fan and who isn’t? I think that this can make a bad fan, but if it’s done respectfully, it doesn’t have to be a bad thing. Sometimes determining what you think is a bad fan can help make yourself a better fan, which is always a good thing. 😉
Is it a person with absolutely nothing to contribute to the fandom other than inane and potentially insulting commentary? This is something that I’m not totally aware that I do, but I’m sure that some people think my commentary is inane. I don’t think inane commentary makes a bad fan, because inane commentary can sometimes be funny and/or just a random way of expressing how much you like your idols. My costuming posts have no point and no real contribution to the fandom, but they show that I’m a fan, and that because I think idols are great, I think that they should get to wear great stage costumes.
Insulting commentary, on the other hand…
Is it a person who doesn’t financially support the artist, but downloads everything instead? I don’t think that this is the worst, but it’s definately not the best thing. Fans don’t necessarilly have enough money to buy everything, so I can understand not buying all the merchandise or going to the concerts or even buying the DVDs, but not buying the singles is just bad. I would buy the merchandise if I wasn’t saving up to have money to spend in college, but I will buy some if there is any at the upcoming anime convention. When I get the chance to go to Japan, I will most definately go to every concert that I have a chance to go to, and I’ll probably book my trip around when the most idol concerts are going on. As for singles and albums, I have quite a few in CD form, particularly of Buono and Morning Musume’s, but I also don’t download any without paying. All of H!P’s recent releases, and one AKB48 album are on iTunes, so I wait until an idol’s music is on iTunes to have it on my iPod so that I know I’m still supporting the artist, and it’s a much cheaper alternative to buying the CD. (Also on iTunes, unlike for American artists, all Jpop releases are still 99 cents) DVDs are the only thing I download, and I would buy them, but I don’t have a bluray player, and the DVD region is wrong for my DVD player.
Is it a person who is insultingly outspoken about what they consider immoral only so that s/he becomes known as a major speaker on the fandom in question? This is the worst. It has to be. Attention whores are for reality TV. If you want attention so that you’re loved by the fandom, then you aren’t a fan for being a fan: you’re an attention whore. If you aren’t being a fan because you’re fan, then I don’t think that you’re a true fan.
Is it a person who wants to become a major player in the fandom and resorts to harassment, stealing, and other sorts of wank in order to spread their name? Just reading this, my bad fan senses started tingling. I mean, This is just bad.
Is it a person who automatically jumps to insults and derogatory words (see: bitch, whore, slut) when referring to people they dislike? Isn’t this the very definition of a bad fan when they use words like this to describe an idol? These words arent’ good to use towards anyone that anyone is a fan of unless the people in question are reality TV stars (Jersey Shore/Real World anyone? I actually love Jersey Shore, but…), then I can understand.
Is it a person who is truly fanatical, someone who is almost rabidly unforgiving of anyone who holds a different opinion in regards to their fandom, even in a public forum for the open discussion of the topic? This is definately a bad fan. You can see the post that is directly before this one, but two out of three of my major complaints are regarding this.
Well, I guess I’m only 3 parts bad fan. I suppose that’s not too bad, right?