As we all know, the fandom is not all about watching anime, but the related activities that goes along with it. After reading the post, I have commented on what I actually do in the fandom. However, telling every exact detail on what I do in the fandom will just leave it in a style that it would be too long to read. That is why I decided to explore even further and in detail on what I actually do besides watching Anime and it could draw some similarities to the activities you participate in the fandom.
I would also like to note that if you just watch and like Anime and not participate in anything else, you are still a fan of Anime. This was something that I haven’t cleared up previously.
When I started blogging back in February of last year, I decided to join AnimeSuki Forums which many of the anime bloggers would be familiar with. When I first started blogging, I participated at the forums and share my thoughts about Anime that I watched. In addition, I helped people that have technical issues and discussed topics outside of Anime. However, this trend kind of lost some steam as I became more serious in Anime Blogging during and after the Anime Blog Tournament and I didn’t saw the point of posting my thoughts again on the forums after I made them on my blog. Even though I don’t really discuss about Anime on AnimeSuki anymore, I still participate once in a while.
In addition to AnimeSuki Forums, you can also find me at Pokemon Community even though I rarely participate nowadays mainly because I prefer the people at AnimeSuki.
Blogging is another aspect that I enjoy the most in the fandom because I like sharing my thoughts and opinions about Anime and its related material. Originally, this blog was a spinoff from my personal blog I had back in October of 2008. When I renewed my interest in Anime, I gave up on personal blogging and gone straight to Anime Blogging. When I first started, my posts were not the quality that I wanted to be. When I started to read and comment on blogs, this is when my blogging style evolved and the quality of the post drastically improved. In addition, keeping an Anime blog helped me practice my writing skills that I need in my college courses and eventually, my job.
Blogging takes majority of the time in the fandom simply because it’s an enjoyable aspect of the fandom and I am dedicated to it.
It’s not so surprising that I am interested in music since I have a musical background from playing Piano and Clarinet. My interest in Japanese Music started when I got broadband Internet and listened to various Japanese songs from Pokemon. After I into other Anime outside Anime, this is when I listen to the more notable Japanese Pop singers (mostly female singers since I don’t have much interest in male singers) such as Lia, Chata, Kalafina, Kotoko, Nakajima Megumi, Yuuki Aria and Sakamoto Maaya to name a few. I don’t sing the songs since I don’t have good singing skills, but I do want to play them on the Piano someday…
In addition to J-Pop, I listen to various Original Soundtracks, mostly from Key/VisualArts since they sound really nice.
I can’t believe that the editorial completely forgot about Visual Novels. Then again, Visual Novels are a niche since most Anime fans don’t touch for the reason that they cater mainly for the Otaku.
The reason Visual Novels appeals to me is that the melodrama in these games has more impact compared to Anime mainly because of length. Also, Visual Novels combine the better of the two qualities seen in Manga and Anime: pretty artwork and Japanese music.
The only Visual Novels I really play at the moment is the ones from Key/VisualArts. Hopefully I can expand this to others in the future.
Like with Anime, I have a strong interest in games, mainly the platformer, fighting, role-playing and racing games. Games like Super Mario Bros., Final Fantasy series, Smash Bros. series, Mario Kart, AudioSurf, and Pokemon.
In addition to those genres I have mentioned, I also play games outside of those genres such as Half-Life2, Portal, Garry’s Mod and Team Fortress 2, which are mainly First Player Shooters that I am not really big in. However, after playing Portal, I became interested in them and I find them pretty enjoyable.
I buy DVDs of series that I want to watch that is on DVD or series that I loved and wanted to own. Otherwise, I don’t buy anything else outside of that because I simply don’t have the money to do so since money is a scarcity, especially for a college student.
Lastly, I program stuff for Anime/Manga Cataloging Sites such as Melative and the ever so dreadful and pain in the ass to program for MyAnimeList. I have done this to improve the experience of cataloging sites for other Anime fans.
I started to program MAL Client OS X back in October of last year when I complained about the lack of a MAL Updater on Mac OS X. With the help of the Unofficial MAL API, I was able to achieve the functionality that allowed me to manage my Anime List without using the web interface. In addition, I created a GUI frontend for MAL Updater OS X scrobbling scripts. Eventually that is turned into a completely native scrobbler after I got the hang of Objective-C and Cocoa.
However, MyAnimeList is a horror to develop for since the Unofficial MAL API is rather unreliable. It would stop working once in a while and changes to the MyAnimeList site breaks the API completely. As a result, I spent less time developing for MyAnimeList since it’s not worth wasting my energy over it.
When I was convinced that MyAnimeList would not be the future, I shifted all my resources in Melative, the kitchen sink of cataloging all your media including Anime and a social platform. Taking what I have learned when I programmed for MyAnimeList, I used it to make Melative Library, which is an easy to use program to manage the user’s Library. Even though the Web UI improved after those months, I still develop the program for users who like to update from the desktop.
Eventually, I worked on MelScrobble for Mac and Windows, which is Melative’s version of MAL Updater OS X. This allows users to detect what they are playing and update the library from there.
What I don’t do in the Fandom…
Even though I precipitate a lot in the fandom, there are many activities that I don’t participate for a specific reason listed below:
Fanfiction AMVs – I simply have no interest in them…
Cosplay – All my favorite characters are female, so that would require me to crossdress, which doesn’t seem right. In addition, I don’t have the skills to make my own costume or even the money to get a pre-made one, so Cosplay is completely out of the question.
Fansubbing – Can’t really Fansub considering that I do not have sufficient knowledge with Japanese to effectively translate it into English.
Anime Conventions – I would like to go, but like the other activities, I simply don’t have the money to attend since I would need to get a hotel room and have the money for entry and food.
Manga – Meh, I prefer looking at the pretty pictures in the Visual Novels instead.
In the end, it was quite interesting to explain what I do in the fandom. It would be interesting for other bloggers to share what other activities they do in the blogosphere… Also, feel free to share your thoughts about your activities you participate (and also, the number of activities does not make you more or less of an Anime Fan as referred in the sentence in the beginning of the editorial) … 🙂
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2 Comments… read them or add your own.
My short answer patently disagrees with your very first sentence, in that you can be a fan just watching anime. So for me, I really don’t care about the social aspect of anime. Because there is nothing social about it. It’s what you make of it, and I get my pleasure being a fan from what I watch, not agreeing/disagreeing with other blogs/tumblrs/tweets/etc…
In short, I don’t really care what people think, because it has nothing to do with fandom to me. Forums, and blogs, and eroge, and cosplay do not a fan make. And they can be their own separate fandoms.
This is not to be said that I don’t enjoy intelligent conversation on anime related things. Or even non-intelligent conversations. I don’t consider them part of fandom, it’s personal enrichment, and knowledge gathering.
In a literal sense, it’s not really required to do any activities in order to be a Anime Fan. Its like saying you must do x before you can be a fan of y. If you like the particular thing, you are a fan just like that.
If you look closer, yes, you can probably consider some of the things I explain into separate fandoms. However, some people do view it like one whole thing… thats okay, but it’s completely different things.