Can Fandom Change Society?

I came across this interesting video today from PBS:

On the whole, I found the concept to be pretty good, but their choices of fandoms to focus on made the whole thing seem weirder than it actually is. Bronies? Transformers slash fiction? Really? Did we need to focus on that so much? No mention of the thousands of hours of charity work that Trek fan organizations like Starfleet International do? Nothing about how television shows like Big Bang Theory and the wild success of Comicon have made fandom mainstream? 
I wish they had given a broader picture of fandom rather than pushing a very specific agenda.
(h/t to boingbong)

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Wargamer and RPG'er since the 1970's, author of Adventures Dark and Deep, Castle of the Mad Archmage, and other things, and proprietor of the Greyhawk Grognard blog.

3 thoughts on “Can Fandom Change Society?

  1. Reading through my comments, I don't see the words "narrow focus" at all. If you're going to quote something and make a snarky remark about it, you should at least make sure it's actually a quote.

  2. "Kids, what's the secret word?"

    I think they're caught up in trying to portray fandom as NEW! and LIBERATING! so they ignore that it's been around, costumes and all, for over 70 years.

  3. I'll agree that it was an odd choice of fandoms to focus on, and even the ways they focus is strange.

    I mean, the main reason that MLP is such a breakout hit is that the show doesn't pander to 8-12 year old girls. It's a good show in general. (Not a brony, myself, but the show's good enough I'll sit through an episode with no shame.)

    Transformers slashfic? That's just "out there", and not right on so many levels.

    I'm actually something of a fan of Naomi Novik. I read some of her non-fanfic novels (I don't read fanfic in general, but I might hunt down hers now), and they were quite good. I also think that we need to take another look at copyright in the light of the internet.

    In general, I agree that the focus should have been more on constructive action rather than simply inclusiveness.

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