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Author Topic: (H!P) Fandom and Elitism  (Read 4216 times)

Offline shirenuファクトリー

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(H!P) Fandom and Elitism
« on: November 05, 2013, 09:51:36 PM »
Inspired by this article of questionable quality:
http://en.rocketnews24.com/2013/11/06/elitism-divides-otaku-culture-as-the-popularity-of-japanese-pop-idols-expands/
I mean, it's a one-sided article that doesn't even attempt to bring up different points of view so take it all with a grain of salt, but it does lead to the topic of elitism.

The article is also not really about Hello! Project, but since I'm a mod of this section I'm posting it here - feel free to borrow it or go a little off-topic here talking about other groups.

Some questions to think about:
What is a "good" fan? What is a "bad" fan?
Who has the right to decide what a fan should be like?
Do the expectations affect how you behave as a fan?
Do you ever find yourself thinking elitist thoughts, about how another fan is doing something "wrong"?


I could talk about each of these topics, but I'll start with the last one about elitist thinking...

I am definitely GUILTY, proven to me by the above article actually. Except the things that wota there said about new fans are things that I've thought about foreign fans. :lol: New fans are no issue to me at all, and I love that the H!P fanbase in general is growing to include more different types of people.

Anyway, these are the descriptions that I (in an elitist manner) felt actually described foreign fans well (note that I'm grossly exaggerating and not saying every foreign fan is like this):

Quote
"Is the fandom about me or the idol? Old fans will favor the idol and say that their own needs are secondary, while new fans just direct attention to themselves by saying that they like idols."
If you watch a live stream of an idol event with live chat going on, there will be a disturbing amount of foreign comments such as "hi i am fan from brazil!" "i love riho!" whereas the Japanese fans focus on commenting on the idol and actions in the video. They aren't bringing attention to themselves, but are discussing the stream. There's a big difference between "I love Riho" and "Riho is cute". Because in the first sentence, it's about your feeling, whereas in the latter, it's all about Riho. It's not like Japanese fans never say statements like that, but there's a time and place for everything. Generally in public, it's not important that YOU love this or that member. It's important that the MEMBER is awesome and worth celebrating. I'm not sure I'm explaining this well, but I feel like the foreign attitude is often (not always) coloured by the desire to be recognized as a fan of someone, and wanting to think you are uniquely important as a fan, instead of putting the importance on the idol herself and considering yourself just one of many nameless admirers from afar.

I'm guilty of this too dawgs, especially in earlier days, and I don't think there's really anything wrong with putting focus on yourself because you are the number one of your life. I just think it's possibly influenced by this western way of bringing up everyone thinking they are a special snowflake, which can lead to a false sense of entitlement. Like "I am Mary and I'm the biggest Zukki fan in the world!" like, get real gurl and take ur place at the end of the long, long line. (I'm sorry if someone named Mary who is a big fan of Zukki's reads this; I don't know any Marys who are also Zukki fans)

Quote
“Newcomers want the idol’s affection. At handshake events, they’ll ask, ‘Do you remember my name?’  And if the idol says yes, they really believe that they were recognized.”
I believe we've all read at least one or two fan accounts from foreign fans who have gone to an event and then complained about how some idol didn't give them enough attention or give them special treatment because they are omg a foreign fan or something. This is what the above quote reminded me of, lol. Just don't go into an idol event with the expectation that you're going to get special treatment for being foreign and don't for god's sake be angry if an idol treats you just the same as everyone else regardless of you being different. They don't owe you that shit. There are some idols at handshake events who look surprised and extra happy for meeting a foreigner, but there are also girls who give the same smile to everyone, and that is fine. And there are idols who remain professional and won't look at you if you yell out their names. That doesn't make them bitches.

IDK if thinking this makes me elitist, but I just can't stand fans who feel entitled to more than what they get.

Quote
“Those people don’t really like idols. They like to like idols by going wild in a group and making themselves known with crazy dances and loud calls.”
I mean, there's a vast difference between a J-wota who appears to a concert wearing his favourite member's T-shirt and maybe quietly chats with pals, and a group of loud foreign fans where one of them might be wearing a pink tutu or something equally attentionwhorish. I can definitely see how J-wota here would seem the ones who are there for the idol, and foreign fans there to make a scene for themselves. I'm definitely judgmental about this lol.


And I'd be interested in knowing the ratio of foreign fans with dance videos on Youtube VS. Japanese fans with dance videos on Youtube :lol: I mean everyone knows Cuca-chan, but to me it feels like there are 50 foreigners to one Cuca. And hey, be proud and post stuff on youtube if you want to, but it's clear then that you're not posting to advertise the idol, but yourself. Just recognizing the action as what it is.

Quote
“I can’t handle it when people slander my favorite idol group with comments like ‘Momo Kuro is god! But Nogizaka is trash!’”
I do feel that foreign fans generally are much more likely to throw around random rude comments and unnecessary comparisons than J-wota. I might be wrong because my Japanese is far from fluent, but going to an idol event, I just can't imagine anyone Japanese starting to diss other groups when you could be talking about H!P. Because the event IS about H!P, not other groups. Nor could I imagine someone starting to loudly declare how Daishi sucks or something. It's just not something you do, it's not classy. But with foreign fans... It sometimes feels like there can be no conversation (not here,  but on The Internet) without someone trying to throw someone under the bus, and it's completely unnecessary. And again it's all about the fan's subjective opinion of who sucks, not about Morning Musume or S/mileage or whatever. Like seriously, nobody cares who you hate.


...

SO BASICALLY I AM AN ELITIST FUCK, BUT NOT TOWARDS NEWBIE FANS (I LOVE NEWBIE FANS!!!) BUT TOWARDS ENTITLED, SELF-IMPORTANT, NARCISSISTIC FOREIGN FANS (which I have also been, and sometimes still am).... :lol:

So come on, somebody else also admit to the flaws in your fan thinking.
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Offline t3hDave

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Re: (H!P) Fandom and Elitism
« Reply #1 on: November 06, 2013, 03:33:03 AM »
After having gone to my first AKB48 handshake events recently, I can understand much more and empathize with the veteran wota being quoted.

Some of his statements seemed ridiculous, but others made me rethink my behavior as a fan.

With some of the handshakes I had I felt like, "oh man, that girl totally did not react the way I thought she would, now I'm disappointed."

If I had to lean more one way or another, I would lean more towards purist / traditionalist views when it comes to being a follower in the idol fandom. However, I do think the times are changing and such rules can't be kept in place forever. Regardless, these aren't rules set in stone, they're good guidelines to follow each with their own reasons (well backed up or not).

I do feel like foreign fans are much more likely to subscribe to this behavior as well, but this is going to turn into another one of those Japan vs. the rest of the world types of talks. I understand that the idol industry is insular and caters to the domestic crowd. There is no large effort to go international, so in that sense the playground is still in Japan where you play by their rules. This is actually why I keep regretting to pick the brains of Japanese fans more whenever I'm there. I kind of just want to know how they think and how they approach this whole deal.

I've heard the explanations of, "it's about HER, not you" and I get it. It just seems like getting nothing in return is not a worthy investment and let's face it, this fandom is an investment (or drain hhhehehe). Again, it might be another East vs. West type of back and forth, but I definitely believe in an acceptable middle ground. I had fun at the event, but now I know what I'll correct in the future. I know that my expectations shouldn't rely on receiving attention from the idol necessarily, rather they should rely on my ability to properly convey my support for them.

Anyway, thanks for the insight and thoughts.

I'd be lying if I said I didn't do any of this idol stuff without the desire for attention, but I definitely know what steps I'll be taking to advance my fandom.
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Offline Ayumizuki

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Re: (H!P) Fandom and Elitism
« Reply #2 on: November 06, 2013, 07:18:48 AM »
Just wanted to quote this post by JFC, who posted this in the Riho thread

http://wotaintranslation.com/2013/11/06/sayashi-riho-harshly-scolds-looper-at-handshake-event/

1st post of the thread:
Quote
1 :名無し募集中。。。 2013/09/15(日) 08:40:38.41 0 
Quote
  @…..: At today’s handshake event, Riho-chan loudly warned this person who looped to shake hands with her like hundreds of times.
    “Please come less next time.” I was shocked.
    And here I thought she’d be happy about the group she so loves getting more fans…
    That was awful.

And go figure...a mere 20 minutes later:
Quote
17 :名無し募集中。。。 2013/09/15(日) 09:02:08.66 0
I want Rihoriho to get angry at me.
I want to be abused.
:nervous


For the record, I don't buy the "if she scolds the fans that loop then she and the group will lose popularity/fans" line that some of the users were saying in that thread.  Naturally they (Yasshii, MM, and idols in general) all want and appreciate the support the support that fans give them, but that does not mean that they want nor expect individual fans to blow all/so much of their money to go through the handshake lines over and over and over and over and over again (you get the idea). Deliberately bankrupting yourself "in the name of your oshi" is not the way to go about showing your fandom, nor does going through someone's handshake lines repeatedly mean that you're a bigger/better fan. After all, when you think about it, if you bankrupt yourself, you have no more money. If you have no money, then how are you supposed to buy the handshake tickets and goods and concert tickets that you usually do to help support your oshi?

I quite agree with you guys (JFC and Shirenu) on various points. For the record, I would not proclaim myself to be a hard core wota of MM even though the entire group is absolutely gorgeous it their own right. This is simply because as a student, I do not have the necessary finances (nor the time - due to lessons and exams and all) to be buying the goods of MM and going for their events (unless they come over to my country, which is highly unlikely  :(  :cry: ). However, I do try to support MM to the best I can buy listening to their songs and sending some of the members letters (during their birthdays especially) to express my support for them and all.

I would not claim to be the number 1 fan or anything like that, though I've probably been guilty of saying things like "I really love Riho and Ayumin" etc. However, the reason why I say this is because my favourite members are really gorgeous and no matter what happens, I really wish them well and I try to express it in a way that is within my means to do so. I'm certainly not what most people will define as a "good" fan, but hey, as JFC said, MM would probably appreciate all the support they get from the fans, no matter how small the gesture is right?

Offline Estrea

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Re: (H!P) Fandom and Elitism
« Reply #3 on: November 06, 2013, 08:41:06 AM »
Lol, fandom and elitism. I am definitely an elitist in SO many ways, least of which by the fact that I do understand Japanese and contribute in small ways to translating articles and the like for the benefit of the international English-speaking community. Sometimes I can't help but feel annoyed when people start posting misinformed opinions about certain idols and/or certain events, but then I had to remind myself that said fan probably didn't have access to the source material and/or was misinterpreting stuff, which can happen so easily if you only pick on one part of what happened or read a bad translation that distorts the original meaning.

But back to idols and fandom and elitism. I definitely used to be guilty of the OMG LOOK AT ME I LOVE YOU SO MUCH thing in my early days, and I think that's really a newbie/youth mistake. The younger you are, the more likely you are to do these things (then again, this is not a catch-all: older fans can behave this way, and younger fans can be surprisingly mature). Nowadays I mellowed out a lot as a wota, but in some ways became more intense: I have my oshi, and I realize that not only do I dislike people who bash her for no cause, but I also dislike the ones that praise her like she's the second coming of God. :lol: It might be a personal quirk but I like to look at my idols warts and all. They're not perfect, they have their moments, and sometimes they really do suck....and sometimes they are capable of taking your breath away. These things happen. It's one facet of the idol you like. I love my oshi unconditionally, but I don't let that blind me to the fact that she's less than perfect. Sometimes I will be unhappy if she didn't do as well as I think she could, or worry that she doesn't seem to be at her best, or proud that she did something better than I expected her to do. In my case, proud oshi feels are very similar to proud parental feels. :lol: I assume not everyone feels this way, since everyone enjoys idols differently, and I'm willing to accept that people won't like idols in the same way I do. It's just annoying when facts are gotten plain wrong though. I almost feel like I need to translate everything I read so people stay informed, but some days I get irritated and am like GO LEARN JAPANESE YOURSELF AND QUIT WHINING THAT NO ONE IS TRANSLATING. I do have a life outside of being a wota XD

But yeah....I agree with a lot of things in that article. For example, I can deal without handshake events and just have fun at concerts. I don't need to be noticed by my idol. I'll buy the albums/singles and some of the merch, and support them at my own pace. I won't bankrupt myself over idols, and I want to spread the love by translating the fun stuff for the fans. I'm not any less passionate than the people who have the finances to buy everything, but I express my love for them in my own way. In the end, the most important thing is to have a good time. Otherwise, why else like idols? XD

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Offline shirenuファクトリー

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Re: (H!P) Fandom and Elitism
« Reply #4 on: November 06, 2013, 09:16:12 AM »
Oh just mentioning that the point isn't to agree with me because the things I wrote were mostly elitist crap :lol:

Just to add this: my attitude mainly changed after visiting Japan. I somehow went from selfishly wanting to be remembered and recognized to wishing I could just blend in and be one of the fans (even if I can't truly because I look so different). I actually don't really like it if an idol looks surprised when they see a gaijin there (because some of them will stare with their mouth open instead of smiling like they smile to others and I'd rather receive a smile than a confused expression, even if it can be funny); I like it if they give me an extra enthusiastic greeting when they see me wearing their T-shirt, however. Because they also give that to Japanese fans who are wearing their T-shirt. You know? It's again a "you get what you pay for" thing rather than "you get what you were born into" or "you get what you have connections to". I like that idols generally try to be fair and aren't allowed to really have favourite fans (AND I LOVE WHAT SAYASHI SAID TO THAT LOOPER LOL). Because everyone who pays a certain amount to get a high 5 or handshake deserves the same thing, not extra love because of how they're stylized or look different, (or how many tickets they buy) whatever. And if there's extra love it should be for something that is available for everyone, like an official T-shirt. Not a fanmade T-shirt, an official T-shirt that shows you're a fan who appreciates a certain member or group enough to buy their merchandise and wear it and thus support them. When your favourite idol spots you and smiles to you, do you want it to be because you don't look Japanese, or because she sees you are wearing her merchandise and she can identify you as a fan? I know I'd rather pick the latter. There's no confusion then, she knows you like HER the most and that's where the connection comes from regardless of who you are. AH LOOK AT ME TALKING TONS OF CRAP AGAIN

And Dave, of course fans go to events because they want some attention. If fans didn't want that they wouldn't go (and there are wota who choose not to go to these events). It's just that the level of attention desired ought to be somewhat managed in expectations. :D
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Offline SomethingWild

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Re: (H!P) Fandom and Elitism
« Reply #5 on: November 08, 2013, 04:13:13 PM »
I can't think of a way to write down my thoughts in a flowing organized manner, so I'll stick with random thoughts  :lol:

- Interaction with an idol to some extent is very important. For me, having seen girls perform or go to a handshake event can make or break idols. Akimoto Sayaka and Noro Kayo from AKB48 were in complete off mode when I saw them and that's just not exciting. Matsui Rena was attentive and she became my all time favorite. Aria from Afilia Saga barely looked at me, whereas Kohime grabbed both my hands and jumped around a little. Huge difference and it also has a huge effect on how I want to support them. In addition, expecting different treatment for whatever reason is ridiculous. Every fan should be treated equally and the fan should accept that.

- One thing I highly dislike about new fans, is that they're extremely quick to jump of bandwagons and flavor of the months. It feels like their "love" for an idol is superficial, or at least different than how I experience all this. In that sense I guess I'm a bit elitist. Related to this, I also dislike how easily some fans move on after a graduation. Things like selling their merch of a certain girl or forgetting about her immediately after she's gone. of course you move on, but I'm still sad some of my favorites left. Actually, there was a scene in Amachan where an older wota chased after a new idol and he was asked if he weren't too old. He responded he'll keep following idols. In that sense, I'm not a true wota at all. I'm a fan of the girls I followed for the past five years, but I barely have an interest in following new girls. HKT48, NMB48's BII, AKB48's gazillionth generation. I can't be bothered. In fact, I made a rule for myself not to follow any idol born in 2000 or later. I hope that way I can be the one to graduate from all this one day. Idols are addictive. Even though they have brought me a lot of joy, I can't help but feel my social life suffered a lot from it too.

- Regarding the whole purity issue, I'm very conservative when it comes to this. If an idol gets caught kissing some dude or whatever I want her gone. AKB48 especially is way too lacks about this in recent times. Girls like Minegishi Minami who get caught, shave their head, go on YT with a huge rant on how much they love the group, blah blah. I hate that. If she loves the group so much, why doesn't she follow the group's rules? Furthermore, when girls like her and Oba Mina even get promoted to captain that just pains me. One exception to all this is Sashihara Rino, because I've always seen her more as an entertainment figure, rather than traditional idol. I don't think the purity rules are outdated at all. It's all part of the game and image plays a huge part in that.

- Recently there was this whole discussion about spending money on your idols makes you a fan. That's a tricky one. Of course, nobody can force you to spent money on something. However, if you take idols as a serious hobby and it brings you so much entertainment, then why not try to buy some of their stuff every now and then?


Might add more later. lol

Offline winner

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Re: (H!P) Fandom and Elitism
« Reply #6 on: November 09, 2013, 06:40:07 AM »
I'm a total fan of Reina of MM and Yukirin from AKB.
But I'm pretty acceptable to jpop in general. If it sounds good, it doesn't matter if its by Morning Musume or AKB48 or Passpo or Super Girls or Fudanjuku or NEWS or Perfume etc..
Maybe because I grew up when jpop was scarce in Australia and internet was just starting up, I just feel fortunate for all the convenient ways we can get japanese entertainment now. Wanna find something, search it on youtube. Torrent it. Buy it online. I can walk 5 minutes now and there's a CD shop full of jap music and movies for me to crash into.

Do I follow everything Reina and Yukirin do? Not really. Do I think they're the best? Hell yes!! total elitist-thinking. :D
For Reina, I knew she was in MM, but didn't really notice her. Till my first trip to Tokyo at 2007. Seeing the sleeping Sephiroth in the Squaresoft shop. Taking pics of sakura trees. Buying all the anime stuff I couldn't afford. And of course, going to my first Momusu concert. Total japan-loving dream come true. :) It was only after going to a concert that made me notice her more and start becoming a fan though the years. In a way she earned my fandom, with her entertaining character and of course being a main drive in the group.

Yukirin I didn't even have any memory of until my 3rd trip in 2009. Seeing her, Sae and some other AKB members doing the live theater play Infinity. I loved it, and loved her in it. :oops: I even got a chance to get up close to her and say a few words when she passed out photos when we leaved. OK. I confess I said "I'm from HK". :lol: She had a surprised look, and gave me a thank you with a great smile.
Just remember, it was 2009. AKB was still a group in their 2nd year struggling to get popular. It wasn't 2013 "super-hot doing tv dramas and solo singles and solo concerts" Yukirin, but "that girl I don't even remember from AKBINGO" Yukirin. For me she was unbeatable after that. If I didn't see her up close, or if she was all salty like Paruru, I would probably not have become her fan. I saw her again at a handshake last year, and she was still as friendly with that great smile. Which shows how much love she has for this job as an idol, grown up loving idols herself. I think that's really cool.

So in a way, I think AKB's "Idols you can meet" thing didn't just help them. But also set a trend for all idol groups. And I think it's a great thing to be able to have such experiences.
I think it's great for new fans to join. Some may want to support a member, which is great.
Some just want to catch what is popular, which is also great since they may love the group after knowing them better.
Some who want to use the group as a way to show themselves off at such events. cool. As long as it doesn't bother fans or the idol, go for it. Just actually learn about them first before going all crazy and dressing up as a melon-pan to see Rena.
Like any other hobby. Just don't be so obsessed that it becomes unhealthy.

Darn, remembered I haven't gotten to watch Reina's Grad concert, or Yukirin's 2 solo concerts yet. :nervous That'll probably put me in the group of bad fans. :P

Me: I was totally waiting for some special day. Just saying, 11-11 is coming up yay! :heart:
Other Me: Oh, what about those Yukirin concerts then~ Waiting for her 28th birthday or something?!!
Me: People need to emotionally prepare themselves before watching such important moments in their idol's life.
Other me: coughlazycough

Offline nachdenki

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Re: (H!P) Fandom and Elitism
« Reply #7 on: December 08, 2013, 06:29:51 PM »
What is a "good" fan? What is a "bad" fan?
There is no such thing as good or bad fan in general. Well maybe when you become so obsessed that you want to physically harm your idol it can be considered bad.
Personally I have a problem with those kind of fans that go full force on supporting them, go to Japan all the time and basically do everything you can do (handshakes, tours etc.).
Rub it in other fans faces in a way that it makes them look like lower tier fans but once they have archived everything they lose interest and hop over to another group or vanish altogether (often after finding a girlfriend).

I consider this "bad" but it could be good for others. It seems to be a mixture of being idol fan to become popular oneself and.. something else.. like a personal challenge to prove yourself that you can get so close to the idol - closer than most other.

As for good there is no real answer but like SomethingWild I think a good fan should spend some money on their idol - I don't think that spending more than others makes you automatically a better fan though.
Contributing to the fandom like Estrea does is also something I think makes you a good fan.

Who has the right to decide what a fan should be like?
The idol her-/himself only. If the idol wants me to call her momochi I call her momochi. If she asks me to buy certain goods and support her I will try my best to do that. If she asks me to stop bad behavior I will try to stop it.

Do you ever find yourself thinking elitist thoughts, about how another fan is doing something "wrong"?
Yes, just what I wrote for the good and bad fan part is something like that.

Do the expectations affect how you behave as a fan?
Yes, following a personal rant related to what I expect and how I behave because there is something that never stops to keep my fan-mind busy.

For my own path it's a line that looks or feels like this: /\/\/\/\ top points are good bottom bad and vice versa
Back in 2006? or so, I started buying H!P DVDs with the intention to put them on the jps tracker because I was annoyed by other uploaders who made a fuss about not getting enough "thank you" posts or something. But short time later I had the same problem or was at the point where I had to ask myself do I do this for me or for the idol and the fandom?
When I do it for me I will certainly need the attention and feedback but when I do it for the fandom with the goal to spread the word and fuel other fans interest I don't really.
Those who contributed something to the fandom know this feeling maybe.
I don't upload DVDs for the greater public anymore these days (also because I think good fans don't ruin the idol's sales) instead I scan a lot photos and I still have this conflict with myself.
Again part of me seems to be doing it for myself but the other part does it for the fandom.
After various attempts I decided against the jphip image threads because it felt like they would not get noticed enough and only just be part of an image dump - for that I spend too much time, energy and some kind of... love on every single scan to allow this to happen. The jphip loader is watched closely by those individuals dumping everything on h!o so that wasn't a very good option either for me because once it's on there it's just another random scan.
The elitist or circle jerk inside of me always wanted to do something jphip exclusive, from stream rips over recordings to scans but due to the open nature of the internet it never really worked well  :lol:
So I went over to tumblr to post my stuff because reblogging gives the option for other to post the pics while it keeps the source information - good for the "bad" side of me who craves for some attention maybe or whatever motivation it is because I barely advertise it and for some time even tried to keep my identities separated.
This worked well for some time, year actually.
Now it's known as source for images and within a day or two they are again on h!o and when I browse the tags on tumblr I see my own scan not as reblog but new post because people got the image from h!o without probably even knowing my "blogs". It's an uncomfortable situation, I can be happy that people like them but also mad that there are no credits whatsoever left at this point. But it's just images, I don't even own the rights to them I just spend time etc. on the scan.
I always wonder if I should hate myself or not because I don't like this attitude when people watermark their name or url on images to get the attention or credit but sometimes I can understand them though I didn't do it myself yet except for a few times when I upped a pic to H!O directly I added some exif data :lol:

As for the getting attention from the idol herself thing... I'm also annoyed by those people saying "hello from xyyland" "xyzland loves you" on streams and messages etc. however I don't think saying "i love you" is bad. Only hating your idol when she or he doesn't treat you special because of whatever reason is bad. Personally I also try not to brag too much with goods or fandom achievements unless I'm really hyped myself and can't help it because usually I'm worried that it might affect other people's motivation in a negative way although I also had people telling me the opposite.
And one thing I barely ever do is badmouthing an idol when a fan of that idol is around and I expect others to behave the same.
But I heard that also exists in Japan, people fighting at concerts because others insulted their favorite.

edit: typo...
« Last Edit: December 09, 2013, 12:40:19 AM by nachdenki »
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Offline resop2

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Re: (H!P) Fandom and Elitism
« Reply #8 on: December 08, 2013, 11:52:41 PM »
I have some strong feelings about "how to be a fan".  I'm not sure if they are elitist or not.

* All idols are put on earth with an "idol beam" that can reach and "bless" all those who "tuned" to the idol's "frequency".

* Just because you are perfectly tuned to be blessed by your favorite idol doesn't mean that everyone is.  There is no universal idol who everyone likes.  That's why there are so many idols.

* If people are in tune with the "rivals" of your favorite idol then it does no good at all to invade their fandom "space" to push your favorite idol.  Your idol would not wish this.

* Everyone responds to their favorite idol in their own way.  If you share the fandom of a certain idol with someone else then you have no right to feel superior to the other person just because you have spent more time and/or money on your fandom.

* While it is common and fun to fantasize about being with your idol in real life, unless you are Japanese, rich, famous, and handsome by Japanese standards this is not going to happen.  Now, there is always the possibility of there being a first time, but that possibility is pretty infinitesimal.

* Finally, supporting idols should be something that enriches your life.  If it is causing grief for you, then you are doing something wrong.

Offline Ayumizuki

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Re: (H!P) Fandom and Elitism
« Reply #9 on: December 09, 2013, 03:07:02 PM »
Oh just mentioning that the point isn't to agree with me because the things I wrote were mostly elitist crap :lol:

Just to add this: my attitude mainly changed after visiting Japan. I somehow went from selfishly wanting to be remembered and recognized to wishing I could just blend in and be one of the fans (even if I can't truly because I look so different). I actually don't really like it if an idol looks surprised when they see a gaijin there (because some of them will stare with their mouth open instead of smiling like they smile to others and I'd rather receive a smile than a confused expression, even if it can be funny); I like it if they give me an extra enthusiastic greeting when they see me wearing their T-shirt, however. Because they also give that to Japanese fans who are wearing their T-shirt. You know? It's again a "you get what you pay for" thing rather than "you get what you were born into" or "you get what you have connections to". I like that idols generally try to be fair and aren't allowed to really have favourite fans (AND I LOVE WHAT SAYASHI SAID TO THAT LOOPER LOL). Because everyone who pays a certain amount to get a high 5 or handshake deserves the same thing, not extra love because of how they're stylized or look different, (or how many tickets they buy) whatever. And if there's extra love it should be for something that is available for everyone, like an official T-shirt. Not a fanmade T-shirt, an official T-shirt that shows you're a fan who appreciates a certain member or group enough to buy their merchandise and wear it and thus support them. When your favourite idol spots you and smiles to you, do you want it to be because you don't look Japanese, or because she sees you are wearing her merchandise and she can identify you as a fan? I know I'd rather pick the latter. There's no confusion then, she knows you like HER the most and that's where the connection comes from regardless of who you are. AH LOOK AT ME TALKING TONS OF CRAP AGAIN



Well I think it's fine being elitist and all as long as it's not too hardline a stance you take LOL! We're all humans and each of us are entitled to our own opinion, you included! I think at the end of the day what unites us all is the love we have for MM and the girls. What's most important is that we all agree that MM rocks, and so do the girls as an individual. Our ethnicity and diverse backgrounds don't matter if we all love the awesome MM right? I just hope at the end of the day, MM and the girls know that they are being loved by possibly a few hundred thousand (maybe even a few million!) people worldwide and that they are grateful to be receiving such support and love!

What is a "good" fan? What is a "bad" fan?
There is no such thing as good or bad fan in general. Well maybe when you become so obsessed that you want to physically harm your idol it can be considered bad.
Personally I have a problem with those kind of fans that go full force on supporting them, go to Japan all the time and basically do everything you can do (handshakes, tours etc.).
Rub it in other fans faces in a way that it makes them look like lower tier fans but once they have archived everything they lose interest and hop over to another group or vanish altogether (often after finding a girlfriend).

I consider this "bad" but it could be good for others. It seems to be a mixture of being idol fan to become popular oneself and.. something else.. like a personal challenge to prove yourself that you can get so close to the idol - closer than most other.

As for good there is no real answer but like SomethingWild I think a good fan should spend some money on their idol - I don't think that spending more than others makes you automatically a better fan though.
Contributing to the fandom like Estrea does is also something I think makes you a good fan.

Who has the right to decide what a fan should be like?
The idol her-/himself only. If the idol wants me to call her momochi I call her momochi. If she asks me to buy certain goods and support her I will try my best to do that. If she asks me to stop bad behavior I will try to stop it.

Do you ever find yourself thinking elitist thoughts, about how another fan is doing something "wrong"?
Yes, just what I wrote for the good and bad fan part is something like that.

Do the expectations affect how you behave as a fan?
Yes, following a personal rant related to what I expect and how I behave because there is something that never stops to keep my fan-mind busy.

 

Interesting views on what constitutes a "good" and "bad" fan...You sound mature (No, I don't mean you're old cos I don't know how old you are!  :lol: )!



As for the getting attention from the idol herself thing... I'm also annoyed by those people saying "hello from xyyland" "xyzland loves you" on streams and messages etc. however I don't think saying "i love you" is bad. Only hating your idol when she or he doesn't treat you special because of whatever reason is bad. Personally I also try not to brag too much with goods or fandom achievements unless I'm really hyped myself and can't help it because usually I'm worried that it might affect other people's motivation in a negative way although I also had people telling me the opposite.
And one thing I barely ever do is badmouthing an idol when a fan of that idol is around and I expect others to behave the same.
But I heard that also exists in Japan, people fighting at concerts because others insulted their favourite.



Precisely why I try not to badmouth idols if possible even though...well...I just don't like that particular idol as much? My opinion is this: each person has his/her charms and points that will inadvertently piss others off (idols included). Nobody is perfect, just as neither am I. If there is a certain idol I don't really like, well, heck, nobody is asking me to support her right? I support the idol I love and because I love that idol, I will accept her for who she is, flaws included! I'm the sort of person who won't go round badmouthing or back stabbing someone if that somebody doesn't do anything to offend me personally, so it's a live and let live attitude I adopt to a certain extent....


But yeah....I agree with a lot of things in that article. For example, I can deal without handshake events and just have fun at concerts. I don't need to be noticed by my idol. I'll buy the albums/singles and some of the merch, and support them at my own pace. I won't bankrupt myself over idols, and I want to spread the love by translating the fun stuff for the fans. I'm not any less passionate than the people who have the finances to buy everything, but I express my love for them in my own way. In the end, the most important thing is to have a good time. Otherwise, why else like idols? XD


Essy is awesome in her own way and this is the part of her I love as she is quite like me in that sense :P but I have a feeling Essy doesn't quite like my way of fanboying MM though  XD  :lol: Oh well...can't have everything yeah? :P

Offline krpsygafan

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Re: (H!P) Fandom and Elitism
« Reply #10 on: January 31, 2014, 12:51:04 AM »
The only real problems I have with H!P fans is just disagreeing with them sometimes. My, well you could call it a problem or you could look at it positively, is I'm one of those people that will get into one, sort of, fandom for a while then I'll move back to one of my other interests. Like I was mostly exclusively into Japan[and even that could be quite broad] from about 2007-2011 then the last couple of years I've detoured into things that have little to do with Japan at all, mostly ITV presentation, I have a friend that's tried to get me to keep playing Skyrim which he persuaded me to buy but I just can't keep it up. So in a way I see things in all fandoms that I have trouble dealing with.

I would love to meet any famous person, let alone a Morning Musume member. I'm not even good at running into people I know.

Offline Rayle

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Re: (H!P) Fandom and Elitism
« Reply #11 on: February 01, 2014, 08:39:51 PM »
No matter how you look at it, I probably embody the fan that everyone looks down on.  :lol: I'm fair-weather/un-committed/DD/whatever you call it, I don't contribute much money to the system, (although now that I have an income I contribute infinitely more than I used to, and will continue to buy more in the future) and I'm attention-grubbing in the sense that I love trolling everything under the sun, which requires getting the attention of the subject to be trolled.

But my take on fandom is that there is no wrong way to experience fandom unless someone gets hurt. Someone can be as hardcore or as casual as they like, but slandering is a no-no because it hurts someone. (Complaining is a different issue, because while negative feedback can hurt someone's feelings, it can also be constructive.) Everyone's personal circumstances affect their priorities. They could be breadth-over-depth, they could not be able to afford spending money on luxury items, or they may find other causes better worth their money. Sure, you're helping the economy by providing for the people who work in the industry, but couldn't that money be equally or better used if donated to charity or something?
On the one hand, it shows even deeper devotion to be spending on an overseas idol you might never see in person, but on the other hand, aren't you hurting your own local economy and artistic community by paying into a very problematic system? I got into a long conversation about the "right" of non-fans to judge the purity system, and a lot of people did say they can't in good conscience support such an industry, even if the girls themselves are worthy of support. Regardless of how you love your idols, cleanly or perverted or whatever, it's hard to argue that supporting the industry isn't also perpetuating a lot of problems that may or may not be worth its benefits.

Each person gets something unique out of fandom, and that's tied to the specific way they experience it, as well as the way they choose to experience it. As long as no one is getting hurt, (and I REALLY mean hurt, not just bruised feelings) who am I to judge what makes someone enjoy something?

My perspective primarily comes from my time in the SNSD fandom, in which many of the official Korean Fanclub members (and I still respect them as people, especially for their impressive charity work) had a vast sense of entitlement and self-appointed authority, trying to indoctrinate the international fandom into their ways and sneering on them at the same time, because clearly only a true-blooded Korean could EVER truly "get" it.
I used to have very strong feelings about this. Quote: "Don't you DARE try to pull "true fan" bullshit on me."

(Hell, I say it's okay as long as no one gets hurt, but given the state of corruption in the industry, there are people getting hurt by its mere existence. There's little more awkward than your (non-idol fan) sister telling you about how a friend of hers is forever emotionally scarred because said friend was an idol fan to the extent to trying to make it as an idol in Japan, only to get raped and slut shamed for it. At that point, I find it hard to want to put too many stakes into this fandom.)

Offline krpsygafan

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Re: (H!P) Fandom and Elitism
« Reply #12 on: February 02, 2014, 02:05:56 AM »
I just don't buy stuff in case mum asks questions.

Online J-Triumf

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Re: (H!P) Fandom and Elitism
« Reply #13 on: February 02, 2014, 12:55:53 PM »
I've been meaning to contribute to this thread for a few months now, but everytime I come across it my mind just rushes with so many thoughts on the matter that I don't even know where to start or how to put it in words! :panic:

But Rayle and resop2 have both pretty much summed up how I feel: find your own way to enjoy the product and culture, and as long as you're having fun and aren't causing major conflict you're welcome to be a fan. We're all here because we all love something about H!P, but H!P has enough variety and history to it (Singing! Dancing! Exciting!) that whatever that something is doesn't have to be the same for everyone. In fact, that sense of variety in the fandom is part of the appeal for me, that I can derive enjoyment and show my support in multiple ways without being beholden to one particular thing. I've always maintained a bit of an "outsider" mentality as part of my fan identity, partially to keep myself grounded, partially to maintain the sense of freshness from being a noob, but mainly because the idol scene still contrasts with my own traditional interests and philosophies enough that there's no way I could've become a fan by directly diving into things; I needed the filters of mainstream comedy shows and genre-familiar remixes of songs so I could initially explore from a comfort zone, and thanks to those filters I was able to eventually appreciate the girls and their associated work for what they were, as well as meet some awesome people along the way. In a sense, I could very well be the type of person that article seems to be about, the "normal" person invading a niche (though obviously anyone who's met me knows I'm anything but normal :P ).

I'm also in the same boat as Rayle in that my open-policy stance stems from my own negative experiences dealing with loud, bitter traditionalists who only approve of "real" methods/productions for enjoyment, though in my case it's actually multiple fandoms (basketball/sports, hip-hop/music, cars, Star Wars, PC gaming, just to name a few) as well as some aspects of general society (fashion, gender expectations). Sure, in a way I understand feeling the need to protect an identity or sense of intimacy--admittedly part of the appeal of H!P is its niche status--but again, who's to decide the right way to go about that?

On that note, regarding attention-whoring and trolling: honestly I tend to be uncomfortable with accusations of attention-whoring, especially if it's over something like a piece of clothing, because in my experience it's often borne of jealousy and insecurity on the part of the accuser (seriously, shirenu, unless that guy was using the tutu to injure or harass someone you need to find something more substantial to judge that guy over--yes, I've been wanting to say this for a while now). And I have no problem with internet fans constantly calling out "Hi I'm from (insert country here)" or whatever; the idol scene is still a very niche market, and I think it's nice to let them know that they have fans all over the world.

And sometimes trolling and snark can be fun, so long as it's still done out of love and with some tact and restraint regarding severity and timing. The nature of the product caters to overprotective instincts, so some respect still needs to be honored towards that. Juggling for Lovendor and Kikka? Funny. Wearing an AKB shirt to a Berryz Q&A? Questionable. Cringing when someone takes things too seriously? Understandable. Lumping everyone/everything in the same boat because you're bitter and have an agenda? Shut the fuck up already because you're obviously not a fan anymore.

Hey, I guess I'm elitist after all. :lol:

I got into a long conversation about the "right" of non-fans to judge the purity system, and a lot of people did say they can't in good conscience support such an industry, even if the girls themselves are worthy of support. Regardless of how you love your idols, cleanly or perverted or whatever, it's hard to argue that supporting the industry isn't also perpetuating a lot of problems that may or may not be worth its benefits.

...

(Hell, I say it's okay as long as no one gets hurt, but given the state of corruption in the industry, there are people getting hurt by its mere existence. There's little more awkward than your (non-idol fan) sister telling you about how a friend of hers is forever emotionally scarred because said friend was an idol fan to the extent to trying to make it as an idol in Japan, only to get raped and slut shamed for it. At that point, I find it hard to want to put too many stakes into this fandom.)

Ironically this is actually another thing that sparked my interest in H!P. Ai Kago was the first member I knew by name from way back in the day, and as soon as I realized who she was I found myself wanting to keep track of her, sympathizing and relating to her struggles with the idol industry because of similarities with my own life at the time. I guess you could say this connects with my "outsider" mentality that I mentioned earlier--I've often wondered since the beginning whether I should even be an idol fan because of things like this, or if I'm just instinctively looking for something to rebel against--as well as the general appeal of idols being imperfect beings...and also why I now tend to be reluctant to blame western celebrities when they start to go crazy, because showbiz and fame can be quite cruel. (sorry to learn about your sister's friend, by the way)
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Offline etranger01

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Re: (H!P) Fandom and Elitism
« Reply #14 on: July 16, 2014, 02:16:45 AM »
yeah kudos to shirenu!
this thread is really worth it.
i really like what j-triumf, krpsygafan and rayle wrote. i didnt even blink cause i might miss sth...

to be honest i have an 'etranger' on this ready, but it's a wall. it's a fundamental thing to me,
but i will sleep this over...if i ever post it...

i mean, i have 50 posts. u just don't come in the house the first time and start kickin balls u know.....

EDIT: j-triumf said: "Lumping everyone/everything in the same boat because you're bitter and have an agenda?", but what if that agenda has the idol in focus and is not selfish? hm....
« Last Edit: July 16, 2014, 02:43:55 AM by etranger01 »
もし、モーニング娘。がいなかったら、私達はいったい誰のファンだったのだろう。
もし、モーニング娘。がいなかったら、私達はいったい誰の曲を口ずさんでいたのだろう。

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Offline etranger01

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Re: (H!P) Fandom and Elitism
« Reply #15 on: February 17, 2015, 01:32:13 AM »
So, i don't care if i have 50 posts or 50k. It doesn't matter.

I will not tell you the story of my life, because that doesn't belong here, ...
So i really believe in Morning Musume and the wonderful music, and most of all the lyrics Tsunku writes.

It means a lot to me, and so it always was with the people at JPH!P.
Why this is the way it is doesn't matter, what matters is that i decided so!

I will keep up the attitude wich attracts good and shiny-happy people. I do this in real life and got credited and so it was on the net.
I want to be a nice person towards people and when i think about the lyrics of one or the other MoMuSu song, i feel that it is the right thing to do.

So, for JPH!P it means:

-if you write in the frustration thread, and you seem sad and lost (as it happened before), even if it's 'weird' and i know i can not do much about it, i will not give you a 'thank you' without telling you in one sentence that i care for you.
-If you make wonderful pictures showing you and your friend making a trip through USA i will keep saying that these pics are lovely and i will tell you how wonderful they are and wich i like most.
-If you are working off your ass in the gym and post about it i will not only credit your results, but also all the effort you make.
-If you spend your time making memes i will credit you also. And i will not do that by only clicking 'thank you', cause you might have spend an hour on that meme, so i feel that it is my duty to have at least 2 minutes to say to you how much i like it.
-If J. Provides the latest gossip about H!P over and over again, i will WRITE a thank you from time to time. I don't have that much time to look all over the net myself, so i will tell that i appreciate.
-If K. write sad poems, and even if i dont know him (or her^^) in person, i will tell you that these drew my attention, and i wonder why they sound so sad.
-And if you seem very likeable to me i will credit you with an artwork, or sth like that. Like a beloved brother or a sister.
-If you just came in and make post like Z. did, and if you are asking for advices i will give it to you as good as i can.
 

And I will do that for all the time i am here, because i am aware the you are living, human beings with a heart and a soul, and behind all your posts it is you as a person and not a machine.
And you deserve more than a click on 'thank you'.

So this is very much about what elite means to me. That is what i have seen, and what i was tought. Elite will help their fellows, they will lend them a hand and help them get up, not raise themself up even higher by looking down on others.
They will live from the love to each other, and not from disparagingly talking about 'the others'.

It doesn't matter if you have 5 post or 5 million, if you are a h!pster, a wota, a soldier, a pilot or a plumber:

if you wanna be elite, things like hatred and spitting poison can never be your thing.

I've seen elite only very few times, because elite is a minority by definition, but everytime the elite ones had a taste of what i wrote above, and i will not forget that.

And in the end the elite ones i knew never labled themself 'elite' ...but what do i know...XD

#love to the brothers and sisters!
(and this 'i love you' i even heard from ppl, you can not even imagine. they weren't to proud to say it, and neither i am)
もし、モーニング娘。がいなかったら、私達はいったい誰のファンだったのだろう。
もし、モーニング娘。がいなかったら、私達はいったい誰の曲を口ずさんでいたのだろう。

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Offline shirenuファクトリー

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Re: (H!P) Fandom and Elitism
« Reply #16 on: April 01, 2015, 03:48:24 PM »
SOME PEOPLE IMPLY IT'S A BAD THING TO BE ON A HIGH HORSE


BUT I SAY, THE HIGHER THE HORSE THE BETTER!!
« Last Edit: April 02, 2015, 07:30:24 PM by shirenu '15 »
Mah H!P chil'ren as of March 6, 2017, due to year of birth

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Offline JFC

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Offline etranger01

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Re: (H!P) Fandom and Elitism
« Reply #18 on: April 06, 2015, 09:39:44 PM »
you like that high horse so much? Better take care not looking like a dwarf the day you'll have to jump off.

In a parallel universe, in some distant galaxy with an earth like our's, you think there's a chance we both get along?
Cause i'd go there....

there were horses once....yours? They were very beautiful!


Tetekette, Mame, Erinrin, Nakazawa, Reina and all the others, even though a would not complain for a special treatment in private, in public i would never look into their eyes or shake their hands or whatever.
never.

i'd throw myself to the ground, into the dust and the dirt their feet are walking on.

But that's not elitism. that's fandom in abjection.
もし、モーニング娘。がいなかったら、私達はいったい誰のファンだったのだろう。
もし、モーニング娘。がいなかったら、私達はいったい誰の曲を口ずさんでいたのだろう。

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