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Fan Art Week


Hi everyone,
as part of Fan Art Week, I'm here to discuss how to continue loving your fandom while avoiding any toxicity in its community.  


It's no secret that some fandoms have a lot of toxicity in them.  Sometimes you'll run into people who disagree with how you choose to enjoy your fandoms.  Maybe it's not even you who is experiencing the drama directly, but you still find yourself surrounded by it within your fandom.  

Finding yourself in the middle of ship wars or general disagreements over AU's (Alternate Universe) or character design or personalities tends to be unpleasant, so how do we avoid these situations?  
At the end of the day you probably can't fully avoid these situations, however you can do some things to prevent them from taking some of the enjoyment out of your fandoms.  


It's okay to disagree

Disagreements are a basic part of life and human interaction.  I think we all know that people don't always agree with us, or us with them.  How we react during such disagreements can make a huge difference in our overall experience though.  Most fandom drama tends to stem from basic disagreements. Knowing how to not let it escalate can help keep the drama minimal.  

If you find yourself disagreeing with someone in your fandom the best thing you can do is to respect that it's their right to have a different opinion.  You don't have to agree with it, nor do you have to actively support it, but simple acceptance that others may share different opinions can go a long way.  


What to do if you experience drama in your fandoms community?

Stop, drop, and roll!  

Well, I guess you'd only need to do that if you're on fire.  If you're experiencing drama in your fandoms community the best thing you can do is turn away.  Don't become part of the drama, don't add to it.  Step away and find a corner that is drama free.  


What can you do if you can't find a positive corner within your fandoms community?

Look for like-minded people within your fandom.  Ideally people who are drama free and share your views or are open to your views on how to appreciate the fandom.  

Making positive friendships with people who share your love and appreciation for a fandom can be a great thing and you'll always have something to talk about which you enjoy together.



Add a Comment:
 
:iconshayla-estate:
Shayla-Estate Featured By Owner Nov 5, 2018
"If you find yourself disagreeing with someone in your fandom the best thing you can do is to respect that it's their right to have a different opinion.  You don't have to agree with it, nor do you have to actively support it, but simple acceptance that others may share different opinions can go a long way. "

This is so true, and something I try to live by in my fandom. I am not part of a particularly popular ship, and on (thankfully very few) occasions have been disrespected for it. In fact, just had this encounter last Friday as another fan and I were chatting and eating our meal. She asked me about the ship, I simply answered "No I don't", and her response was basically "I hate you, we can't be friends." Now this was mostly said in a jovial manner, and I did not take it personally. I did not lash out. I responded with "I just don't and that's okay. You and my sister would have a lot to talk about." Had I been someone else, they might have responded differently and gotten into a fight in the middle of IHOP. To put things in perspective, this gal, whom I've only known for a short amount of time, is 18, and I'm not saying age has everything to do with it. But versus my almost 33 years of age I tried to show more maturity and acceptance. I know and accept that I'm probably "not in the norm" by not shipping this couple, but I don't. And I don't have to just to fit in. 

I had a similar response from my sister when she discovered I didn't agree with the ship, and yes that really soured my day. And occasionally sours the fandom for me. But I keep quiet, I enjoy what I enjoy, I accept that others enjoy different things. All I ask is for the same respect in return. Sorry this got rather lengthy. I don't feel like I have many places to express my frustration when it comes to this particular thing. So thank you.
Reply
:iconastralseed:
Astralseed Featured By Owner Nov 5, 2018  Professional General Artist
Yeah, I've seen a fair bit of nonsense when it comes to someone shipping a certain pair or not supporting a popular ship.  It's all so unnecessary too because there's nothing wrong with people having different opinions.  
Reply
:iconshayla-estate:
Shayla-Estate Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2018
Exactly! And now, even with other shows, I feel like I can't really talk about my ships with my sister now without getting slightly harassed. And that's silly.
Reply
:iconxdonnervogelx:
xDonnervogelx Featured By Owner Nov 4, 2018  Student Interface Designer
It's funny; we have a project this semester in one class where our group focuses on fandom toxicity. This is just on point xD
I hope it's okay if we use some of the content for our project (=
Reply
:iconastralseed:
Astralseed Featured By Owner Nov 5, 2018  Professional General Artist
Sure, feel free :hug:
Reply
:icondaphne-brown:
Daphne-Brown Featured By Owner Nov 3, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
I love the Trump and Hilary gifs
Reply
:iconastralseed:
Astralseed Featured By Owner Nov 5, 2018  Professional General Artist
;)
Reply
:iconlu--24:
lu--24 Featured By Owner Nov 2, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Good advice. I agree on finding your corner. In some cases I found it is best for me to ignore the international fandom and stick to the one from my country which is much more down to earth...
Reply
:iconastralseed:
Astralseed Featured By Owner Nov 5, 2018  Professional General Artist
:nod: 
Reply
:icongiganotosaur314:
Giganotosaur314 Featured By Owner Nov 2, 2018  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
This is such a well written guide, it's informative, not too long, and it keeps a positive feel. I think everyone whom are in a fandom, should read this, especially newcomers. Thank you for sharing this, I loved reading it.
Reply
:iconastralseed:
Astralseed Featured By Owner Nov 2, 2018  Professional General Artist
When I first proposed writing it I thought it would be much longer than this.. but as I started writing I was like oh man this is so much shorter than I expected D: 
At the end of the day just avoiding the drama and finding a happy place for one's self is where it's at.  
Reply
:icongiganotosaur314:
Giganotosaur314 Featured By Owner Nov 3, 2018  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Well I am actually glad it's not too long, because sometimes people are busy or tired, so they don't want to read a mountain of text; this journal, however, avoided this, which I'm glad for, so more people can fully read this informative and thoughtful entry.
Reply
:iconemo-art-13:
EMO-ART-13 Featured By Owner Nov 2, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
... I'm sharing this with my watchers!
Reply
:iconastralseed:
Astralseed Featured By Owner Nov 2, 2018  Professional General Artist
:highfive:
Reply
:iconemo-art-13:
EMO-ART-13 Featured By Owner Nov 2, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Shared! You're Welcome!
Reply
:iconsevese:
sevese Featured By Owner Nov 2, 2018  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I wish more people would stick to that simple rules.
Drama is never an option when wanting to enjoy something, no matter what.
Thanks for sharing. :)
Reply
:iconastralseed:
Astralseed Featured By Owner Nov 2, 2018  Professional General Artist
I think for a lot of people they just don't know how to react in certain situations.  Often a lot of drama comes from people who end up acting like a caged animal lashing out because they probably don't realize that they can retreat.  Otherwise learning when to stand tall or when to bow out also can take a fair bit of maturity so the younger folks may not have gotten to a point yet where they can easily decide which way to lean.  
Reply
:iconsevese:
sevese Featured By Owner Nov 3, 2018  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
True - and in general that might be the case. 'nods'
But to be fair I have to say that I witnessed grown ups being 30 years or older acting like that. I don't blame teenagers for being over-defensive or too rude due to their lack of ability to discuss without causing drama. They are sort of excused. For adults ... I can't force myself to be as patient as I am with kids. ^.^
Reply
:iconrieile:
RiEile Featured By Owner Nov 2, 2018
Very sound advice, but... is DA populated by misbehaving 10-year-olds? I guess I just think too good of people...
Reply
:iconastralseed:
Astralseed Featured By Owner Nov 2, 2018  Professional General Artist
:giggle: there are a lot of younger kids on DA, but you'll also find a lot of adults.  I haven't seen as much fandom drama here as I have on other sites, but it does still exist.  
Reply
:icontylerfreeflight:
TylerFreeFlight Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2018  Hobbyist Writer
:heart::heart::hug::heart::heart:
This is so... right on the money!
I love my fandom and the good friends I have there.
I avoid the darker side and realize all fandom's have one.
Great advice! You deserve that heart after you name. :)
Reply
:iconastralseed:
Astralseed Featured By Owner Nov 2, 2018  Professional General Artist
Thanks hon :heart:
Reply
:iconlugia20711:
Lugia20711 Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2018  Hobbyist Writer
This is going in my faves.
Reply
:iconastralseed:
Astralseed Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2018  Professional General Artist
:highfive:
Reply
:iconember-jewels:
Ember-Jewels Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2018  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is a really neat topic that I think a lot of people could learn from, thank you for sharing!
Reply
:iconastralseed:
Astralseed Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2018  Professional General Artist
No problem :)
Reply
:iconthermidorresistance:
ThermidorResistance Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2018  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Hmmm hmmmm thing is sometimes fandoms are toxic and you didn’t touch on common etiquette such as bullying of creatives who make the show/content, bullying fans who make content that doesn’t fit the ideal, or attacking real businesses that share the name of a fictional show by posting reviews on the actual business website.  Possibly affecting revenue and impacting real people. That kind of shit is beyond personal problems, but a fandom that is taking it to a whole other level. 
Reply
:iconastralseed:
Astralseed Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2018  Professional General Artist
I'm not sure why you feel that should have been included here?  Or do you mean I should have included it for the people whose OCs etc have become full fandoms and they are experiencing these problems?  The average user doesn't tend to experience those things, at least not on that scale.  
Reply
:iconthermidorresistance:
ThermidorResistance Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2018  Hobbyist Digital Artist
You are writing about toxicity.  I was referring to the incident where Steven Universe Fans wrote reviews for a real hotel in Florida that went by the same name as a fictional hotel in the show.  The reviews were posted on a real business directory, and basically would affect that business had it not been for some fans jumping in and trying to do last minute repairs after the fact.

The same fandom harassed an artist/creative content maker to the point they left Twitter

Fandom bullies artist because they drew Rose Quartz too thin, the artist already had mental illness to the point that the artist attempts suicide.

My point is, you want to talk about being in a fandom and avoiding toxicity, when sometimes it's just hard to avoid it.  It's easy to say "Not all fans of _______ are that way." But the problem therein is that by NOT speaking up against that, it's just perpetuates the public opinion that the whole fandom is toxic and it should be avoided and therefore the thing that the fandom supports should be avoided.

MLP had the same problem with the proliferation of pony porn, and what was an inside joke among a small group of ADULTS became an internet thing with Princess Molestia. 

I'm not saying that people should go out and silence this stuff, because in all fandoms there's going to be someone who takes it to that level, but when you have actual people and businesses affected by the actions of fans, then there is a problem and the Fandom should take responsibility and call that shit out.

Reply
:iconastralseed:
Astralseed Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2018  Professional General Artist
I see what you mean but I think that's a whole different league from what this article was intended for. 
I honestly don't want to encourage people to be online vigilantes for the sake of their fandoms because far too many people don't know how to help in ways that aren't damaging.  It's better to let people know how to steer clear of drama, than to steer them into it and hope they wont make things worse.  

I don't think it's hard to avoid toxicity.  There are always people to be found who don't involve themselves in the drama, and are open to how others wish to enjoy the fandom. 
Being part of a fandom doesn't magically mean you have to be part of any negativity happening in it as well.  I can like tacos (fandom) but dislike tomatoes (drama), so I simply make them without.  
That being said, I also don't think that an entire fandom should be held responsible for a handful of people who are out there creating problems in the name of the fandom.  Let the people responsible for the problems carry that responsibility!  

While I don't disagree that sometimes people need to be called out, I don't think it would be appropriate for an article like this.   Asking people to call others out is like a call for white knighting, and we all know how that tends to end.  
 
Reply
:iconthermidorresistance:
ThermidorResistance Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2018  Hobbyist Digital Artist
That is true but a few articles from recognized news sources and the fandom as a whole gets the negativity done by a few dumped on the whole.

Furries have had to deal with this for years, and most tend to just carry on and do their thing regardless, but it does make it hard sometimes to talk to people who are not in the fandom about it.  Like family members etc. 
Also I'm not saying to white knight but rather as a whole sort of address the problem with media and each individual try to represent the fandom in a positive way so that as a whole maybe the positivity would outshine the negativity or at least diminish it.


Reply
:iconastralseed:
Astralseed Featured By Owner Nov 2, 2018  Professional General Artist
That is true and it's really unfortunate.
I think that's why it's important to find positive people within those circles to surround yourself with.  People you can be open with about these things etc.  There's a lot of misunderstandings with fandoms, much like there is in the furry community, so having people you can talk to about it all helps a lot.  

I know it's not necessarily ideal, but this article just wasn't about how to change fandoms, it was about how to find a happy place in it.  
Reply
:iconthermidorresistance:
ThermidorResistance Featured By Owner Nov 2, 2018  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I agree with that I guess I misunderstood the intent.
Reply
:iconthiefoworld:
Thiefoworld Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2018
Hillary by Thiefoworld  
Reply
:iconastralseed:
Astralseed Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2018  Professional General Artist
:giggle:
Reply
:icontomboyjessie13:
TomboyJessie13 Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks for the tips
Reply
:iconastralseed:
Astralseed Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2018  Professional General Artist

No problem :)

Reply
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