The FanBoy Culture

All politics are personal. These days, most politics are purely partisan as well. Its a part of our culture that is becoming as American as apple pie.

Just as American in our culture is our rapid support of our sports teams.

In the blogosphere, it seems like everyone takes sides. The Political Right and Left, and obsessive sports fans all defend their turf by comment bombing any blogger, forum or response enabled website that presents a point of view contrary to theirs or challenges their team or its players.

On this blog, I know that when I take a position about anything even tangentially related to sports or politics, the comment bombs will come.

What I didn’t expect was when I took a position regarding a company or its products that the comment bombs
would be there. I’m a child of an era when teenagers distrusted anything from government or business and I still harbor some of the same viewpoints from then. So imagine my surprise when in writing about Google, Youtube, Apple and other corporate entities or their products, I got flooded by emails and comments disparaging me for my positions.

I didn’t get in depth rebuttals to my position.Those are welcome and encouraged. Its one of the best parts of having a blog. I didn’t get an analysis supporting a response. I got typical teenage
feedback “You Suck, Google Rocks”. “Youtube is the new Internet, you are old school Internet”, “BitTorrent is amazing and you are not a geek” and things a lot more personal.

Such was my introduction to today’s fanboy.

Whatever happened to Counterculture being a positive attribute ? In today’s fanboy culture, kids are obsessively supporting products. They aren’t “fighting the man”, they “are the man”. They are using their fanboy legions and their inherent purchasing power to persuade and dissuade anyone in their way. This is from the Urban Dictionary Definition of Fanboy:

An arrogant person who goes into an outburst every time something he likes is questioned. Fanboys usually accuse others of being fanboys. Usually use 1337 and swarm MMORPGs. Fanboys caused alot of fallouts between people when they started arguing about consoles. If you insult something that a fanboy likes, he will spam your computer up and try to insult something that you like. Most words a fanboy uses are in 1337 or end with ‘X0RZ’ and they spell the work ‘the’ as ‘teh’ because they think that it is ‘teh ro><0|2Z!!!’
e.g. Counterstrike is teh rockxorz!

Fanboys usually use the word ‘own3d’ if they beat someone.
Another annoying feature of a fanboy is that if he is loyal to a console, he usually goes to rival console forums and spams the place up with inlets about how his console is ‘better’.
They take the ‘console war’ very seriously, as if it’s a real war.

Sony Fanboy: omg n00b nintendo is teh suckx0rz becasue its games are for kids because they dont have 100% violence! etc. etc.

Nintendo Fanboy: STFU N00B NINTENDO |2O><0RS SONY, TAKE AWAY GTA AND YOU CAN’T SAY ANYTHING! NINTENDO ISN’T FOR KIDS BECAUSE NINTENDO HAVE BEEN GOING FOR 100 YEARS+ etc. etc.

XBOX Fanboy: STFU BOTH U N00BS! XBOX is owned by microsoft the richest company in the world, you both suck!

Neutral Fanboy: OMG I DIED ON COUNTERSTRIKE WHILE I WAS MACROING! I MUST HAVE BEEN HACKED! I’M REPORTING TO GAMEMASTER!

All fanboys: OMFG U WERE MACROING N00B IM TELLING GAMEMASTER!

The marketing implications of all of this are fascinating. Wired wrote about what happens when fanboys turn against their product because it didn’t live up to the purity of fanboy expectations, as happened with the Fantastic Four movie.

All marketers dream of having a fanboy base for their products. What is more textbook wonderful than passionate customers ? But like trying to create a video that takes off and becomes viral via Word of Mouth, fanboys happen in spite of marketers, not because of them.

The challenge for marketers everywhere is to determine the depth of any fanboy following, how to support it and what the implications are if you don’t match their expectations. Gaming companies have Fanboy advisory groups, I don’t know of any companies outside the gaming world, and certainly not outside the technology world that do.

Every marketer, particularly in the technology space has to know what fanboys are saying for or against their products. They must recognize that they can be as harmful when “bombing” customers of competitors’ products as they are helpful when buying and supporting theirs. Corporate decisions must be made with Fanboys and their impact in mind. Bizzare in so many ways, yet true.

Corporate bloggers have to recognize the fanboy balance as it relates to their company and products. Say the wrong thing and your comments are filled with hate. Turn off your comments to prevent it and you are accused of being bullied by fanboys. “CEO Blogger fears Fanboys” is not the headline you want across the net.
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Fanboys are the opposite of the hipsters of 30 years ago in attitude, but I wouldnt be surprised if they are equal in their influence on entertainment and cultural choices of their followers.

I wonder who the Andy Warhol of Fanboys is ?

42 thoughts on “The FanBoy Culture

  1. MTV’S TRUE LIFE: I’M A FAN BOY
    Are you obsessed with comic books, anime, fantasy, or manga? Do you like to dress up as your favorite character and attend conventions with other fans? Have you ever waited in line overnight for a book, movie, or videogame release? Do you have tattoos depicting your favorite brand or characters? Have you ever missed work, school, or other important events to engage in role-playing or cosplay? Are you misunderstood by your family or significant other because of it? Have you ever been told to “grow up” by someone important to you? If you’re an obsessed fanboy (or girl), MTV wants to hear from you.

    If you appear to be between the ages of 16 and 28 and identify with any of the above, MTV wants to hear your story. Email us at tlfanboy@gmail.com. Please be sure to include your name, location, phone number, and a recent photo.

    Best,
    Benjamin Rosen

    benjamin_rosen@yahoo.com
    917-846-4824

    Comment by chris -

  2. I am the Andy Warhol of the Fanboys.

    And my 15 minutes haven’t even began.

    Comment by Elliot -

  3. Some people like sport, some people like music and some people like games. what is the difference between supporting an nhl,nba or other such team through the bad times and the good and supporting a console through the bad times and the good. people have their own passions.some teams would have no-one turning up to their games if they were only supported when they were winning. it would be looked down on if everyone were to switch teams all the time and just be glory supporters. also by your definition of a fanboy someone Who sticks by a console and defends it whatever i am a sony ps3 fanboy. but i dont play mmorpgs i think they are a waste of time but i dont write on the internet about how much i dont like them and the people who play them. and i hav never written in leet or 1337 watever u want 2 call it. but i do defend the ps3 online in arguments about consoles like others may argue about the rangers and the devils.

    Comment by joe -

  4. It is pretty discouraging indeed, and it only seems to grow.

    I’d say it’s down to natural instincts. Since we don’t get the physical activity our mind needs, we build up a kind of frustration that we don’t understand, and then let off stream in pointless arguments. Actually I think they have to be pretty pointless to work mentally.

    Comment by Henrik -

  5. 10/10 this thread delivers!

    I must second Zak Kinion’s post.

    I am truly impressed that you brought out your ‘fanboy’ dictionary and used all the lingo in the right context.

    Comment by Dave -

  6. Fan boys are just polarized fans. Marketers today know how to polarize and cultivate those fans.

    A good example would be Mark’s comments about an opposing teams home town tourist attraction. The remarks about the San Antonio River Walk during the Spurs series last summer were highly polarizing to both teams fan base.

    Comment by brett tabke -

  7. Hi all,

    Never been here before, found this page via a link posted on Wiifanboy (how’s about that) anyway I couldn’t agree more that Fanboys are an immature annoyance that makes reading some forums and blogs a chore.
    They’re entitled to their opinion of course but the purposefully bad spelling is inexcusable, mistakes are made by everyone of course.. but what’s this? This wonderful new internet software is pointing out every single mistake I’m making and even offering to correct them for me!
    With this technology soon to become an expected standard perhaps it’s time to start writing blog/forum software that purposefully blocks badly spelled posts or maybe makes their writer keep re-typing them until they get it right

    It wouldn’t make them go away but it would force them to type in decent English otherwise they’d spend so long correcting everything that they’d never get to throw their opinions around. ;)

    As for the mechanics of it I suggest a percentage based system where a certain amount of mistakes or made up but “allowed” words (Batman for instance) are allowed.

    Comment by Mark Davis -

  8. All the time you may find a lot of fan boys, they are all different… and very specific people with very narrow-minded…

    Comment by Annabel -

  9. Very good comments about “fanboyism” Mr. Cuban. Fanboys are something I ran across while doing research before purchasing a Playstation 3. While I was pretty sure I wanted one, I wanted to make sure the technology was good, and it was something I wanted. What I found were 100′s of negative posts about the PS3 and how it was doomed to fail. I was aghast, I had no idea how bad this system was until I’d read those postings. I then went to read about the XBOX and found the same smattering of negativity.

    Were these systems both that bad? No, of course not, Fan boys were so rampant in the forums I was in that it was impossible to get any real information from customers.

    I also found it hard to imagine why people were *so ademate* about supporting a product from multi-billion dollar corporations, knowing the fanboys wouldn’t get a dime.

    Thanks for this article sir, very good stuff.

    Jason

    Comment by Jason -

  10. Do you play World of Warcraft?

    I bet you do. Don’t lie.

    Comment by Zak Kinion -

  11. Mark, I think you’re right in linking fanboys to politics. The polarization has caused this. Soundbites create no room for open debate. And thus if all of our issues are debated through soundbites that are polarized to the exteme, then this is how kids will learn to debate issues because it is what they see all adults doing.

    I say we need to get politics out of the TV arena (which seems to slowly be happening). If Hillary Clinton is going to answer questions on her website and post her video responses, why not have debates online too? These debates could be accessed anytime from anywhere, without the time constraints of TV. Moderators would not have to limit responses to 90 seconds as it is now for presidential debates, and people wouldn’t have to be home at a specific time to watch them and be involved in the political process.

    If we can get our poitics back to open and articulate debates then perhaps our society, along with fanboys, will follow.

    Comment by Ryan -

  12. I find your blog entry to be very informative. I have encountered such spamming, but was not aware of it’s intent, and thought it nothing more than an annoyance. To think this is a deliberate attempt to bully people toward supporting a product or not is clever, but does not speak highly of the intelligence of those effected by it. Comments and opinions should remain a freedom for all of us to utilize. Fanboy mentality is not supportive of that concept and I am surprised it is tollerated.

    Comment by Mari -

  13. Mark-You are right on the money here. I view this issue as a societal paradox. Remember Apple’s Mac commercial based on the George Orwell book? For all of the young generations “knowledge explosion”, and hyper-independent mentality, suspicious of politicians, they are pretty much sheep/robots. Whatever makes them happy as people, sure that is great. But they are not expanding themselves and this is done at the benefit of big business. They don’t even seem to know it.

    Comment by Patrick Hall -

  14. I’m the Andy Warhol.
    But I don’t concider myself a fanboy. I game mmorpgs and all that and I have stooped to 1337 speak on rare occassions. Fanboys are concidered an annoyance by most actual human beings.

    Comment by Tim -

  15. It’s the new religion Mark. There is no longer any such thing as an “enthusiast”. Enthusiasts are cool. I am an unapologetic Apple/Mac enthusiast, for example. But… there’s a lot I find about Apple that’s beyond stupid. Let me list… The “Mac/PC” ads are aimed at fanboys, trying to convince them they (the fanboys) are “cool”. AAPL is beyond overvalued. The prominent analysts (Shaw Wu and Gene Munster) pump that stock up like an intern under President Clinton’s desk. Those guys are stock fanboys. Apple has a pretty serious situation with this SEC investigation, but the fanbots (hey, that was a typo but it fits — TM me) all say “no big deal” when backdating of options and not accounting for it is a blatant swindle of the shareholders. Then there’s Apple not wanting to license the Mac OS, which sticks them in a very narrow lineup of form factors when the market (HP, Dell, and lots of small players) are coming up with all sorts of interesting form factors to hit the niches. But despite all that, I really like my Macs and iPods and just about all things Apple. I recommend them to friends, buy as gifts, etc.

    I grew up on USC football and am still a rabid fan. My most memorable lesson about sportsmanship from my Dad was that you never cheer when an opponent gets hurt, unless it’s a Notre Dame guy. But that all ends when the teams leave the field, and you can actually have friends who are Bruins, and you can talk smack with them all day long, but they’re not “the enemy” in real life. Spectator sports are a release for our tribal instincts, not an excuse for us to be tribal 24/7. Same with spectator commerce, politics, or culture.

    Comment by Brad Hutchings -

  16. It think of fanboys as an older brother teasing his younger brother. They know their brother will cry and get upset over the littlest thing… They KNOW that “rational” thinkers will will become irrational and that is their goal. Isn’t here a saying about a pissing war? Everyone gets wet. Fanboys don’t care if they get wet.

    Comment by Bryan -

  17. I was looking up a video of the roller coaster Kingda Ka which is at six flags great adventure in new jersey on youtube, and it appeared that people had left comments on the video with the sole purpose of explaining why that roller coaster sucked and why the drag race roller coaster at another theme park was better than the kingda Ka. They also asserted that the kingda ka was a ripoff of the other roller coaster because the designs are very similar. I cannot imagine anything that expresses FAnboyism than loyalty to a roller coaster! I mean, come on.

    The icing on the cake is that both roller coasters were designed by the same company, so the argument is like comparing an ’05 Imac to an ’06 imac.

    Comment by superdave -

  18. Hmm, the marketing aspect involved with fanboys is very interesting indeed. I never thought about it that way.

    Comment by Roger Jin -

  19. I don’t think it’s so much a respect for certain products. Rather, it’s a pack mentality. Much in the same way, in high school, that kids divided themselves into the Jocks, Nerds, Preps, etc., they further sub-divide themselves into sub-groups. Google vs. Yahoo, Sony vs. Microsoft vs. Nintendo, Windows vs. Linux vs. Macintosh, half the time, I don’t think these kids really know what they’re fighting for, they just know they’re fighting against SOMETHING! And they have other people on their side! FIGHT THE POWER!

    Do they understand what they’re fighting for? No, of course not. But when we were teenagers… did we have a clue of what we were doing with anything?

    Comment by Christopher Bowen -

  20. I’d have to say that David Pogue is the Warhol of Fanboys. I can’t really think of anyone higher profile than him.

    Wouldn’t neutral fanboy actually be neutral bystander?

    Oh yeah, O’Doyle rules!

    Comment by Doug -

  21. Those who do not remember the past? They are condemned to repeating it. Those who do remember the past? They are condemned to marrying someone who TiVOs “All The President’s Men” and replays it over and over and over and over.

    Today’s Andy Warhol seems to be Al Gore. Just when I think I will burn in hell for having voted for Dubya in 2000, Al opens his mouth, and makes me realize there were no alternatives.

    Comment by Paul Ding -

  22. rampant fanboyism is simply a product of vane consumerism. the more people consider their belongings a reflection of themselves the more they will promote their preferences/possessions as superior. as irrational as it seems, an expressed preference for a competing product is understood by the fanboy to demean the image the fanboy is trying to construct for himself through their purchases.

    i’m not immune (i’ve got a bit of a nintendo fanboy streak in me), but it is strange how much is personally invested by some in corporate image/brands.

    there isn’t an andy warhol of fanboyism yet… the attitude is so noxious to other fanboys with only marginally different tastes that it’s doubtful one could emerge. there are a few folks that hold sway over many of them though… linus torvalds, matt cassamassina, harry knowles, steve jobs, wil wheaton, joss whedon, etc.

    Comment by The Cultured Redneck -

  23. Did you mean “rabid” instead of “rapid support”? I’m of the generation where authority is to be questioned, but good writing is to be praised.

    Comment by Barbara Durso -

  24. I linked to this on the DonMurphy.net forum. We’ll see how the Transformers fanboys feel about your summary, Mark.

    Comment by Shan -

  25. Guy Kawasaki is the Warhol of fanboys.

    Comment by matto -

  26. I used to play Counterstrike and those annoying fanboys were the primary reason I got out of the habit. Isn’t that a double-edged sword for marketing when your biggest fans are utter lowlifes?

    Comment by Eric -

  27. Back in school my friends an I were comic book and movie fan boys but the only one who heard us was each other. Now we have created this endless echoing feedback chamber that is the Internet and it get’s hard to tell what the general consensus is on any new product or program. The fact is at the end of the day the base or fanboy group won’t make a movie but they can be used as an effective marketing tool for others. Like viral videos capture them and hopefully they will all bring a friend (if they have non fanboy friends). So while the internet has enabled fan boys to create these echo chambers, they empower companies to use them to market their products, however passing on marketing to another group doesn’t allow you to control the message it allows the consumer to convey the message. The ramifications of the internet again and again are proven to be social as opposed to purely technological.

    I think it’s a bit naive to claim that all Fanboys are MMORPG players I certainly don’t play that many video games but have views on MSFT and Apple and Superman vs. Spider Man that would probablly label me fanboys. (apple = good, and Super Man = Lame) Also my Mom has views on what she consumes that aren’t always driven by price, although she is not a fanboy. I think a vast majority of us have a little “fanboy” in us. It just makes the endless marketplace and options available to us more easy to navigate.

    Comment by Brendan Piper -

  28. What’s wrong with liking, or even loving something? Is there no room to be passionate about something. A product you use all the time, which consumes time in your life because you get pleasure out of it. There’s no need to fight “the man” on everything. Be passionate about something. Being nonchalant about the world is a waste of time.

    Comment by Diego -

  29. HYSTERICAL post! Thanks!

    Comment by Kirk -

  30. It would be curious to know if fanboys are filling the psychological gap that has typically been filled by religion in past generations.

    I wonder how many die-hard religious goers are as passionate about Nintendo as they are of their god(s)? My hunch would be that you’re “diehard” over only one of them, and not both.

    Perhaps “In Apple We Trust” is simply the result of the brain trying to fill a void that it’s hardwired to fill, likely the result of evolution. Many people see Apple as God, and Microsoft as the Devil (insert your personal brands accordingly).

    For example, say 20,000 years ago, being loyal to your tribe may have increased your odds of survival and getting your gene’s passed on. A tribe that sticks together has larger odds of survival for its members that individuals wondering out on their own, especially in times of conflict.

    If this were the case, the context of the matter may have not mattered. You proclaimed loyalty to a tribe early in life and stuck to that. Many people who are Red Sox fans, usually those who grew up liking them, don’t jump ship and become Yankee’s fans overnight, regardless of the performance of “their” team.

    Does anyone have statistics/evidence regarding this?

    Comment by Dave Gallagher -

  31. You should take a look at the other side of the coin – fangirls. Yes, they are out there. There are pockets that revolve around pretty much any male celebrity you can think of (heck, I’m sure there’s a pocket of Cuban fangirls out there on a website *somewhere*). They, too have their own language, often 1337-based and involves a lot of ZOMG’s and squees.

    I run a Stephen Colbert-themed fan site and keep my ear ground about the goings-on with the Colbert Nation (what Stephen Colbert calls his cult of personality). And you’d be amazed at the seedy underbelly of what goes on in the name of their star. For the most part, all the fangirls are united in the cause – the worship of Stephen Colbert. However, when opinions differ, the fur can fly. It amuses me to no end. It’s funny how the hardcore fans, especially the fangirls, will quibble about the minutiae of the Colbert universe.

    Comment by DB Ferguson -

  32. I have too many comments to post. I’ve studied fandom for a long time after turning my own into a career, so I had to understand what the difference between a consumer, a fan, and a fanboy are.

    Dr. Henry Jenkins I would consider the expert, his blog is at http://www.henryjenkins.org/ . He wrote a book called Textual Poachers which is pre-web and provides the most insight and best perspectives I have found in one place. Read pages 16-21 on Amazon if you can.

    In the end it’s all about people coming to terms with their own identity, where their identity is rooted and why, and how they subconsciously pursuing answers in abstract (and sometimes not so abstract) ways. My peers and I call it self-organizing behavior. It’s all the same in the end, people looking for answers and finding stability in the reality they construct for themselves in how they view the world.

    If you want to know who the Andy Warhol of Fanboys are, I guess that depends on what your definition would be. I think it’s Steve Sansweet, who works for LucasFilm (I think) now and started as a Star Wars fan who tracked all the merchandise and now works for Lucas’s licensing and marketing. The industry had no expert, as a fan he became the expert, Lucas hired him to do it professionally many years later. There are many other examples but I’d have to say Steve has been the one to stick with it the longest. Others got over their fandom, and maybe Steve has too, but he’s still as close to the property he was a fan of as he ever has been. If not Steve then perhaps Forest J. Ackerman of Monsters fame. He is at least the oldest genre fan I am aware of that feed it and flourished.

    A side note would be to discuss where the sports fan fits into this and whether or not there is a bigger sports fan out there than the biggest genre entertainment or hobby fan.

    Read textual poachers if you can. Jenkins has written other books since and ultimately will expose you to the likes of Marshall Mcluhan, Joseph Campbell, Edward Bernays, Century of the Self, politics, participatory culture/dialogue, entertainment and religion, mind control and mass culture, and how it all comes back to identity and media and how you are what you consume. Good stuff.

    By the way someone said it was immature… technically how immature fandom would depend on constructive (or deconstructive) a person’s behavior is. The less constructive the more narcississtic (and psychologically unhealthy) the behavior.

    Mark, you hit the nail on the head when you talk about marketing. The individual fanboy is the absolute (long) tail end of every niche market. They are one extreme (on a technology adoption curve they would be called the innovative first adopters) where the other extreme is the non-consumer (the resistent skeptic). Most people fall in the middle as Early or Late majority consumers of pop culture. The fringes either try to stay away or stay ahead of the curve in terms of knowledge and experience. As marketers the key to success is identifying what I named “Trendblenders” — tendsetting early adopters in positions of authority and leadership who are influencers or activists and media remixers. These people create mediums and messages where they didn’t already exist opening up new lines of communication to reach people where they are. Like I said, good stuff.

    For the record, I am one of those fans who became a fanboy to turn a hobby into a career change and now work in Hollywood on digital media and marketing, so I probably have way too much to say about the topic. Mark, you probably could say the same for sports. I went from being an average fan, to understanding fandom extremes, to using it to give people what they want as a career. It’s why I read your blog.

    Comment by Jake Lockley -

  33. I think “fanboys” are entertaining!

    Comment by Todd -

  34. The Andy Warhol of fanboys, and a non-schill, is Scott Jennings (aka Lum the Mad) in my opinion. He’s a fanboy that worked his way into the gaming industry to make the games he likes.

    Comment by grant -

  35. Fanboys, somewhat akin to what you’d like to attract to your Landmark Theatres. Too artsy-fartsy for me, these are the customers that keep coming back to Indies. But not for long. Soon, your high-end patrons will rather stay at home, with their high-end home-theatres, than go to the theatre. You need to look forward. You need new fanboys.

    High end gamer-den, the future. Used to be called arcades, a digital game den attached to your movie theatres is an avenue to attract new loyal fanboys to your theatres. The kids in the gamer-den; the adults in the theatre. Soon all will be in the gamer-den, only the stalwarts at the theatre. There’ll be a new fad.

    Not competing with XBox, PSP, etc., these companies will never attempt to market high-end. XBox or PSP can’t be done at the same level that can be provided at a theatre. This level of virtual reality, digital games which are now being designed, but aren’t yet available, are the next generation of entertainment. It’s a market that is only waiting to be exploited.

    So many processors being put on a today’s chips, it’s just waiting for a graphic, game application to utilize. It’s perfect. Multi-processor coding is too risky for the general gamer market designers. Sony, MS won’t touch it. But not for a niche market. Put these games in an arcade, and you get… fanboys.

    Comment by www.freeway2000.com -

  36. I don’t think people have changed so much, the difference is the companies (more specifically, their marketing).

    Google/Apple are seen as counter-culture, even if they are publicly-traded and out to make a profit, they market themselves to be fighting against the ‘bad guys’ (Microsoft/RIAA/MPAA & the government). Remember when Google publicly rebuffed government requests for data disclosure? You couldn’t buy that kind of publicity.

    But mention oil companies, defense manufacturers or even politicians to the same people and you’ll be transported back 20 years to when people hated ‘the man’.

    Sports teams aren’t involved in this; it’s always been if you’re not with MY team, you’re the enemy. The only team I’d say that has really taken the concept to the next level is the Raiders, the whole Raidernation gimmick is perfect; the owner was loud and brash, fighting the stuffed shirts in the league office.

    That’s not a shot at you & the Mavs, it’s just the NBA seems to be slowly filling with younger owners and David Stern seems intent on sticking with the gameplan that got the NBA where it is today. Has anyone ever won a fight with the league?

    Comment by Adam Cains -

  37. That douche Scoble is the Andy Warhol of fanboys. He’s also a schill.

    Comment by Josh Stack -

  38. ROFL COPTER. I love it Mark. OMGZORZ YOU NOOB

    I didn’t know you had it in you. If I went to work (teacher) and started to talk like the fanboy that I can be sometimes the kids would laugh that I know that lingo. I’m a seasoned video game vet. and I seem to know more about Fanboy’s than most. I’m glad sports doesn’t have the lingo like the video game boys do.

    Comment by Browie.com -

  39. I wouldn’t call them fanboys, I’d call them down right crazy.

    Anyone who does this is both immature and crazy.

    Comment by News Blog -

  40. Having just read the replies to your comments on BitTorrent, I can see exactly what you mean: fanboys are mostly ignorant – and proud of it. I’m not sure, though, that the attitude is a new phenomenon or if it’s just that kiddies have been given a voice. Marketers have been creating divisive brand loyalty (in products, politics, religion, etc) for a long time, perhaps what’s really new is the global echo chamber and new heights of resonance.

    I wonder if it won’t end up being good for society to permanently archive everyone’s past comments – now you can actually find records of someone’s maturation. Eventually, we might even be able to point at the youthful “fanboy” comments of a (now-grown) successful person as a lesson to children about hasty judgment. I’m sure people will be using your own words for/against you when the Google/YouTube dust has settled. I’d love to see the average person held accountable in the same way ;) PutUpOrShutUp.com?

    As an aside, I think the article you linked to mentioned a potential “Andy Warhol of fanboyism”: Harry Knowles. ? Not sure if the analogy holds up, but I assume you mean someone who has risen to fame without leaving the fanboy world, and while nurturing future fanboys…

    Comment by Steve -

  41. Don’t you think most people grow out of this behavior? I feel like all these kids spamming boards about XBox or wii or whatever are like 12 years old. As far as politics go, parties try to polarize their bases. People run divisive campaigns that try to manipulate people into being scared to even consider the other party. Once you have a blind and rabid fanbase, you can do whatever you got to do. The truth ceases to exist because as soon as someone gets some dirt on you or tries to put your views in perspective, the fanboys come in and bend the truth……………………….

    Comment by Max -

  42. Its so true. Honestly fan boys are everywhere. They are closed minded people who are not open to change, even if change brings many new beginings. FAN BOYS CAN SUX0R my DIX0R HAHA.

    Comment by cassidy summers -

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