cherrybina: (Default)
[personal profile] cherrybina
Okay, so I have a lot of Thoughts about fandom's migration to tumblr, and at first I didn't want to type them up because I thought it would just make me all sad, but then I was all sad anyway so I figured I might as well, and then I wasn't gonna post, because who wants to wallow in crankiness NOT ME THAT'S WHO. But then I thought maybe posting would like help my crankiness ~dissipate into the ether~ or something skdlhj;sdhjfs; IDEK WHAT I AM SAYING AT THIS POINT. Thoughts. I have them.

Obviously everyone comes to fandom for different reasons. The definition of fandom isn’t even the same for everyone. Like, one of my complaints about tumblr is that I feel like I can’t find fandom, but I’ve heard other people say they like tumblr precisely because it’s easier to find fandom, and I think that has to do with your personal definition. Tumblr’s tagging system makes it easy to find stuff (unless of course you are in 1D fandom, in which case you will find a trainwreck of misogyny, homophobia, and all sorts of other horrifying things in the tags), but to me, fandom is not the place with the stuff; it's the place with the people.

It’s not that I don’t believe fandom on tumblr can’t be active and vibrant and full of amazing things, because I know all of that is true. It’s not the what; it’s the how. For me, fandom is first and foremost about the people – it’s the energy that comes from sharing joy and building friendships, and that energy is what keeps me coming back day after day. It’s not about the end-product fanworks, but the conversations that get us there, and that’s where I think tumblr fandom is lacking in a major way.

Don’t get me wrong, I think tumblr is an awesome platform, and I love having the ability to share things without feeling like I have to take the time to say something interesting all the time, but as my main source of fannish activity, I find it really unsatisfying. I just really miss those interactive conversations that make up the whole reason I’m in fandom in the first place. I find conversations on tumblr to be awkward, clunky, and almost impossible to follow if they involve more than two people. It’s like everyone is talking, but no one is talking to each other.

This isn’t about better or worse. I fully believe that fandom will flourish no matter what platform it’s on. I mean, obviously tumblr fandom is working for some people or it wouldn’t be migrating there in the first place, right? But for my own personal fannish experience, I think that something is lost when the bulk of fandom happens on tumblr, and it’s not just one little piece, but the whole reason I love fandom so much in the first place. And that makes me sad :(

But dflkhjfdlhfdj YOU GUYS. This is a terrible post D: I don't want to feel cranky right now because wherever it happens to be, I really do love fandom a whole awful lot. And since to me fandom means people, that means I love all of you OH YES I DO ♥ And on that note, I am putting on my happyface and no one can stop me SO THERE.

I bet you're smiling now, aren't you. EMBRACE YOUR GIGGLEFACE :D :D :D

Date: 2012-08-17 06:35 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] christycorr
:D TH's face makes everything better :D :D

I agree with you. While reblogging gifs with the occasional commentary is fun and all, it's just...a different form of interacting. It's rather telling that a lot of the best commentary happening in tumblr happens in tags. Which are not even made for that! Which require an extension and/or manual scrolling effort to be viewed fully! Tumblr keeps trying to limit fandom's "wrong" tagging habits, to no avail, and I don't think that's changing any time soon. Age of the hashtag, baby.

My non-IM fannish interactions nowadays are about 70% tumblr and 30% twitter. I really miss having an active LiveJournal/Dreamwidth feed to read and comment, but it feels like quick, pointed commentary is almost all we're producing nowadays. I miss meta so much; tumblr is pretty awful for discussion, because it's nearly impossible to keep track of arguments, and twitter is much too short for anything. I feel like most of the meta I read nowadays happens within fic, actually. Which is great! I love meta-y fic! Just. Since when has fandom been all about producing things? I feel like all the hours people spend making gifs for tumblr could've been spent having interesting discussions. Don't get me wrong, I love fan art! And gifs! I just love everything else too, and that—as you said—has been losing space.

Also, most of my fic recs I get straight from Pinboard, crack_van and AO3 feeds, which get sent to Instapaper via ifft, and that has changed my fic reading habits a lot. It's kind of removed the "personal rec" element from the equation in a way, which makes me sad.

tl;dr fandom survives no matter what, and this new multiplatform fandom is a bit strange. Not quite sure what to make of it yet.
Edited (jfc, I clearly need sleep—so sorry, bina) Date: 2012-08-17 06:46 pm (UTC)

Date: 2012-08-17 09:21 pm (UTC)
eustacia_vye28: (Nerdy Tosh)
From: [personal profile] eustacia_vye28

I agree with everything you're saying in this post. I've been around the intarwebs since fandom was a wee bb with mailing lists and everything was all genfic and slashers had to be all subversive. The nature of how fans interact change, but to me the core of it has always been the discussion and the sharing of ideas. It can lead to fic/gifs/manips/fanmixes/whatever or be generated by those and then lead to others. Or it can be the fun discussion that leads to crossovers and finding new things to squee about. Or it can tangent off into SRS BSNS discussion.

To me, Tumblr feels like there's more noise than signal. It's not hard to lose track of fannish activity in that kind of mess, and my only real interaction with Tumblr has been looking at pics or an RP. And holy cow, I am so glad it's a smallish RP, because really active posters made my head spin with how far I had to go back to find any content that I was supposed to reply to.

I like journals so much more than Tumblr or Twitter, but YMMV. For my own personal interactions with fandom, journaling or chatting fits better. I want the discussion. I want the comments and the tangents and drawn out approaches to characterization and plot (since I do fic). I like finding out about random things.

And possibly this will make your day, but you know how you're into 1D fandom now? I don't know if I've heard their stuff, but one of my patients a while back started talking about them. Thanks to you, I knew who she was talking about! And I could talk about the fandom with her, because she is a young and clueless girl about all things fannish. This post reminded me to tell you about that. I think you'd appreciate it. :D

Date: 2012-08-19 07:43 pm (UTC)
eustacia_vye28: (Geek Chick)
From: [personal profile] eustacia_vye28
Tumblr is definitely easy to have the +1/like feature without a real conversation, but it seems to be too difficult to really discuss ideas with a lot of people. Which is sadmaking, because I think that's the best part of fandom.

I always think it's kind of hilarious when I get looks of shock from my child or teen patients when I mention fandomy or geeky things. I don't know why, given that I have two anime wall scrolls in my office. :)

Date: 2012-08-17 10:03 pm (UTC)
polytropic_liar: (let me put you on hold)
From: [personal profile] polytropic_liar
I agree completely! I don't know why DW and Tumblr can't be complementary fandom platforms. I just wish more of the people I like and admire in fandom used DW.

...also I wish all of the fests and memes and everything didn't happen on LJ. I don't want an LJ account, but I want to participate, so I'm always left feeling like I don't get involved in things for stupid platform-related reasons.


Date: 2012-12-13 08:23 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
The only thing I can think of is that maybe someone deeletd your profiles. Did you make sure to close the browser before leaving the computer? If someone deletes your profiles while you're logged in then your profiles will be deeletd from your online profile. I'll look into the code to see if I can find any potential bugs. Do you log into only one computer or play on multiple computers?What was the stats for your hero (level reached, gold earned, hero rank and class)? 0 0


Date: 2012-12-13 12:12 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
@Jeremy, you're right that I do like the existing conutmimy not 100% of what the conutmimy does, but I like it more than I dislike it. I have been in the open source conutmimy for around 15 years, and contributed to a great many projects, because I believe that we're doing something amazing and world-changing and worthwhile. I have many excellent friends in the conutmimy, and it was great to spend time with them this week at OSCON. And I have a deep love for good code, and for communities that value excellence in software design and implementation. So, you know, I'm not just standing outside the open source conutmimy pointing and saying UR DOIN IT RONG.

Date: 2012-08-18 04:43 am (UTC)
puckling: (OMFG You Are Merlin)
From: [personal profile] puckling

Date: 2012-08-19 07:02 am (UTC)
regicidaldwarf: (Default)
From: [personal profile] regicidaldwarf
Huh. That's interesting to me, because as someone is pretty much baffled any time someone talks about how the best people they've met are through the internet (how are you making friends through the internet, how is that a thing that happens, what is this sorcery, what do you mean I'd have to talk to people), I find Tumblr to be a really good place to find fandom, or at least to find a certain section of it. I think that people talking about Tumblr being the New Fandom Place are maybe either missing or ignoring the fact that people are interacting with people on multiple platforms now, more so than they ever were before (in my opinion, anyway). I think DW/LJ are great for actual content posts, twitter is good for chatting, Tumblr is good for sharing pretty things that interest you in the moment, Pinboard is good for rec lists. IDK! I don't think the conversation has stopped. I just think it's shifted somewhat.

Date: 2012-08-19 02:59 pm (UTC)
venusinchains: (stay alive (mirandafox @ lj))
From: [personal profile] venusinchains
"I just really miss those interactive conversations that make up the whole reason I’m in fandom in the first place. I find conversations on tumblr to be awkward, clunky, and almost impossible to follow if they involve more than two people. It’s like everyone is talking, but no one is talking to each other."

This is my problem with tumblr. And conversations I've seen elsewhere discussing how it can be used for group conversation just reinforce the idea that it's creators not only didn't design it for that, but that they actively work against users who are trying to customize it for that. So I just visit occasionally for the pretty pictures and hope that any new ideas relevant to my interests get linked somewhere that I'll see them.

Not disagreeing with what you're saying either

Date: 2012-08-25 05:47 am (UTC)
frabjous: (Not your fucking khakis)
From: [personal profile] frabjous
I think Tumblr moves fandom into a space that is primarily about the visual fanworks (fanart, gifsets, etc) which is something I quite like because it means there are more ways for people to contribute to fandom - and sometimes contribute across language barriers. Obviously text is a lot better for communicating complex ideas but I think Tumblr's doing some pretty interesting things visually as well (for example, those AU gifsets).


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