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22 August 2016 @ 06:41 pm
Crotchety Old Fandom Lady.  
So, dugindeep put up a post commiserating about the new era of fandom. She was saying how hard it feels to bring fandom together across too many spaces. I thought I would clean up my comment and post it here, because fandom has changed and maybe we do need to think about how to change with it, but sometimes I feel like a crotchety old fandom lady.


There are a few issues that have made the divide in fandom feel bigger. The fact that we are spread out across too many social media sites is one. Twitter and Tumblr and Ao3 and LJ, not to mention snapchat and Instagram and whatever else. We are scattered, our forces are too spread out across the realms. I, myself, am on LJ, Tumblr and AO3.

With Tumblr, it can be an interactive experience, where you post a thought, someone turns it into a plot, someone else actually writes it, then someone else does art for it. And it becomes a whole collaboration. And that is amazing! I love seeing that happen! I love being a part of interactions like that - it can feel like the art has come alive on its own.

But the other end is you put something out there and it doesn't get seen because it has to be picked up by the right person to make the rounds. And for fic, you get likes and reblogs but not comments, because its uncool to comment on the piece itself, idek. So, while fic certainly happens there, the interactions maybe don't happen as much thru it. I feel like maybe some of the best interactions on Tumblr happen through meta - a lot of meta over there.

Idek, it feels fast paced on Tumblr. And sometimes that can be amazing, especially if you are watching a post evolve, but that can also can be overwhelming. And sometimes it's just a void. Tumblr is a very drastic swing.

On AO3, I used to really feel that the kudos button was a cheap way of enjoying someone's work for free and then taking the least amount of effort to give back to them for it. Now when I use it myself, it's because I wanted to just say like, "Thank you for letting me read this." Otherwise, I try to take the time to comment. I told my bff what a cheap ass shot I thought the kudos button was - (I've come around on it, I take it now as a "I liked this!" comment and I like to know when someone likes my work,) - and she said she uses it all the time and we would have never become friends if we'd met thru ao3 because that's all she does is kudos. And I thought, 'how would we have become friends anyways, it's not like there is conversation on ao3?' It's Fic/Comment, but no conversing, how do you make connections on ao3? Anyone explain to me how to turn AO3 into connections?

It does seem like my work gets seen a ton more on AO3. Maybe because more people read over there now or maybe because of the fantastic tag system, idek, but it feels like my work gets seen by a wider range of people on AO3, as well as myself finding so much more fic to consume, finding the stuff I like, getting my sweet spot hit more readily. So for fic consummation and feedback quantity, you can't beat AO3.

I still feel like LJ has better quality of comments and deeper social connections, it's the best for socializing - but it's gone quiet these days. Fandom is spreading out and the great things that LJ has to offer are thinning with the numbers. Still, you can't beat LJ for comments on personal posts though, the social connections here are way better, the conversations too.

But my biggest new friend connections I've made in the last few years have been from my disability blog. They turned into fannish squee, "You like this? Me too!" But they started thru disability convo. It's just that sometimes finding the right people thru all of these spaces - and even within the spaces themselves - is overwhelming. How do we come back together again?

There are certainly things I like about the other platforms I am on, and I have made some good friends there and am changing the way I 'do' fandom, but still, I am so glad to have this little coffee shop we call LJ.
 
 
 
Shirebound: Valentine pigletshirebound on August 22nd, 2016 11:20 pm (UTC)
but still, I am so glad to have this little coffee shop we call LJ

*beams*
dodger_sister: fangirldodger_sister on August 30th, 2016 12:03 am (UTC)
LJ will always be my favorite fangirl space! <3
Trigger Warning: Lifematchboximpala on August 23rd, 2016 04:04 am (UTC)
Me, too!

All the rest of those social media platforms have their uses, but they seem to me to be more about instant gratification. "I put this out there now let's see how quickly someone will reblog/like it." I do comment on A03, but I don't expect to have conversations there. LJ really feels like the only option for me.
dodger_sister: fangirldodger_sister on August 30th, 2016 12:07 am (UTC)
All the rest of those social media platforms have their uses, but they seem to me to be more about instant gratification. "I put this out there now let's see how quickly someone will reblog/like it."

Yes! That's it exactly. Like I said about Tumblr, it is fast paced but that is often overwhelming. I'm just too old for that shit, tbh. On my fannish Tumblr all I do is reblog fannish stuff and post pics of my cats. It's the disability Tumblr that I do more original stuff on, but that subdivision of Tumblr is slower paced, less about notes and more about connections.

I do comment on A03, but I don't expect to have conversations there. LJ really feels like the only option for me.

I enjoy leaving comments and replying to comments with 'thank yous', but that's all you can really do on AO3. There is no 'private contact' option and I'm not gonna have full conversations in someone's comment section on a fic, you know?

Yeah, I enjoy the other places, but LJ is my home.
lindahoylandlindahoyland on August 23rd, 2016 05:58 am (UTC)
I'm a crotchety old fandom lady too. I just can't get into Tumblr. I think LJ is the place for making friends, but I miss all the folk who have left.
dodger_sister: annoyeddodger_sister on August 30th, 2016 12:10 am (UTC)
I'm a crotchety old fandom lady too. I just can't get into Tumblr. I think LJ is the place for making friends, but I miss all the folk who have left.

I am proud to be a crotchety old fandom lady!!

Yeah on Tumblr, I just couldn't find a way to make the fannish connections. I never seemed to figure out how to utilize it to make the connections I was searching for. But in the disability area of tumblr, there I did make some connections. It's just much slower paced, more about conversing and support and was easier to navigate than the fandom side of tumblr. I just come back here to good ol' LJ for that!
Kate: taking wingceitfianna on August 23rd, 2016 06:14 am (UTC)
You've captured so much of what I find odd about Tumblr in terms of conversations. You're either seen or not at all and connecting all the elements. I mean we met because of commenting on a mutual friend's journal and that doesn't realy work on Tumblr. That's why I share my truest and realest stuff on DW and LJ, because I know the people here and while many of them are on Tumblr, it's not the same.

I do like Ao3 and kudos and leave comments myself because I got into fic culture through places like Sugarquill and LJ, so to me that's what you do, kudos and comment.
dodger_sister: annoyeddodger_sister on August 30th, 2016 12:23 am (UTC)
You've captured so much of what I find odd about Tumblr in terms of conversations. You're either seen or not at all and connecting all the elements.

Exactly. The texting ability on tumblr has helped a bit, but even so, most people are reluctant to private text someone if they haven't already made a connection. It's too much shouting into the wind over there, at least on the fannish side of things. Sub-areas, like the spoonie community, have different feels to them, but the fannish side is too massive for me.

I mean we met because of commenting on a mutual friend's journal and that doesn't realy work on Tumblr.

No, we never would have had that back-n-forth in a tumblr reblog comment area on a post that everyone could see on their dash, like, no. I never would have raised my hand and said, "Hey, I'm from MI too!" in that situation.

That's why I share my truest and realest stuff on DW and LJ, because I know the people here and while many of them are on Tumblr, it's not the same.

I like to say LJ is a small neighborhood coffee shop. Tumblr is a rave. AO3 is a library, with multiple book clubs and one really organized librarian. Once I get on twitter, we'll see what I say about that! (hoping to get an actual cellphone soon, J wants to get me IPhone, specifically because she needs me to get on twitter, for her own amusement. She isn't even on twitter herself, but I guess she thinks I'd be funnier. BFF always threatened to start a twitter called "Sisters Say..." and just tweet all the ridiculous things J and I say to each other. lol)

I do like Ao3 and kudos and leave comments myself because I got into fic culture through places like Sugarquill and LJ, so to me that's what you do, kudos and comment.

See, now that's very interesting to me because I got into fic culture through yahoo groups where you replied to the fic in a email and it went directly to the message board and then others replied to your comment and so on and you could leave these really lengthy meta-like comments because it all just became conversations that you'd eventually move to its own thread and keep going. That is why I still leave these comments with at least some details of "I liked X Thing bcause of Y Reason, great fic!"

So the kudos to me was the opposite of the way I learned to leave comments and it bugged me. I've learned though. On LJ I've gotten comments before that simply said, "I liked this!" and that little comment made me happy, so I look at kudos that way now too. But it was a learning curve from what I knew before. Changing the way I 'do' fandom.
Ironlily - Making My Marquevikingprincess on August 27th, 2016 03:11 pm (UTC)
I miss LJ, but it's my own fault for doing other (non-network) things. Still haven't written since July, for example. And if I don't have time for my beloved LJ how can I possibly add other fannish sites?
dodger_sister: annoyeddodger_sister on August 30th, 2016 12:25 am (UTC)
I miss LJ, but it's my own fault for doing other (non-network) things. Still haven't written since July, for example. And if I don't have time for my beloved LJ how can I possibly add other fannish sites?

You are the definition of crotchety old fandom lady, bb!

I have the luxury of the unemployed at least, but still...I haven't updated my AO3 in almost a year. I have 900 things waiting for me to reblog on Tumblr, yeah that'll happen. And now I may be getting a twitter?! /shakes head/ I'm like the parent whose kids buy them the tech and then they only use it play solitaire though. ;)
Ironlily - Making My Marquevikingprincess on August 30th, 2016 02:02 am (UTC)
LOL We can totally be crotchety old fandom ladies together.