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The Fandom Fractal: A Small Essay.


EDIT: WHAT THE CRAP! Why did it cut off so much of this?! Fixing it now….It will suffer somewhat, as I try to recreate the previous thoughts, thus the PURITAN, HATER, and REGULAR PEOPLE won’t be as well-summarized as the PERVERT. Stupid, stupid Tumblr.

So, I was talking to somebody on Twitter just now, and a thought came to me.

There are four factions of every group, regardless of criteria for inclusion or exclusion in that group. I have dubbed this concept the ‘Fandom Fractal’, for it works even within each faction, ad infinitum. I enumerate them here, with select examples of each.

1: Perverts.

Don’t care about whatever canon there may exist, caring only about their own interpretations. (Historical revisionists, people who insist that only OCs matter, believers in radical religious teachings, the guy on the corner who insists that Major League Baseball is trying to steal his brainwaves through tainted Dodger Dogs, etc)

2: Puritans.

Care only about the very letter of what is said/shown/taught, decrying all else as ‘Disgusting’, ‘blasphemous’, and so forth. Directly opposing the PERVERT, they are the cause of most of the conflict within the group. (Religious fundamentalists, the people who nitpick and nerd rage over minor details in Star Wars, Star Trek, comic books, etc. The ‘Stop Having Fun Guys’ Guys.)

3: Haters

The ones that dislike the media/teachings/beliefs/etc of the group, and/or point to members of the previous two factions and say ‘The entire group is like that! Let us hate the entire group because of the actions/beliefs of a relative few!’

4: Regular People

Everyone else, who like/believe what they like/believe, accept that other people may not, and generally think that the other factions are too uptight. Most directly opposed by the HATERS, who seldom care that there are people who aren’t in the PERVERT or PURITAN factions. Generally the largest, but least vocal of the factions, and often the ones most hurt by the actions of the others.

Remember, these factions are RECURSIVE; Within the each faction there exist four sub-factions, and within each of those sub-factions exists sub-sub factions, et cetera ad infinitum. (Or at least until there’s one person left, unless he’s *very* confused.)

Like, dislike, comment, critique…but if you can find any real flaws in this, I’d love to hear them.





“This piece was primarily a trust exercise, in which she told viewers she would not move for six hours no matter what they did to her.  She placed 72 objects one could use in pleasing or destructive ways, ranging from flowers and a feather boa to a knife and a loaded pistol, on a table near her and invited the viewers to use them on her however they wanted. 

Initially, Abramović said, viewers were peaceful and timid, but it escalated to violence quickly.  “The experience I learned was that … if you leave decision to the public, you can be killed… I felt really violated: they cut my clothes, stuck rose thorns in my stomach, one person aimed the gun at my head, and another took it away. It created an aggressive atmosphere. After exactly 6 hours, as planned, I stood up and started walking toward the public. Everyone ran away, escaping an actual confrontation.”

This piece revealed something terrible about humanity, similar to what Philip Zimbardo’s Stanford Prison Experiment or Stanley Milgram’s Obedience Experiment, both of which also proved how readily people will harm one another under unusual circumstances.”

This performance showed just how easy it is to dehumanize a person who doesn’t fight back, and is particularly powerful because it defies what we think we know about ourselves. I’m certain the no one reading this believes the people around him/her capable of doing such things to another human being, but this performance proves otherwise.”

this is why performance art is important

So every single person who told me ‘ignore them they’ll go away’ and ‘you can’t let them know they bothered you’ and ‘They’ll stop if they don’t see you react’ and all that bull shit, my entire school career, I want you to look good and hard at this.

I want you to think about what you said.

What you keep saying.

What you are telling your children.

You are making them powerless.

that last comment. actually crying.

(Source: andrewfishman)

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