so a podcast i listen to put out an episode today about the mlp fandom and they made a pretty interesting comparison that i thought would be neat to paraphrase here
one of the hosts put forward the idea that the brony fandom is basically like a moshpit. it’s a group of people who want to run around and bump into eachother and look like idiots because that’s what’s fun to them. maybe they’ll look dumb to everyone else but they’re having fun and they’re not really hurting anyone.
with moshpits, sometimes they’ll attract a guy who has no interest in participating in the group but instead wants to walk around the outside of the circle and just punch people in the head because that’s his idea of fun.
this is where the idea of a self-policing community comes into play. the guy on the outside is not encouraged. everybody separates themselves from him and removes him from the venue because if they don’t, the moshpit is going to become a toxic environment where people who want to have fun are getting hurt.
i think that exemplifies the pony fandom’s biggest failure, the lack of desire to separate themselves from people exhibiting clearly toxic behavior. instead of isolating people whose idea of fun is harmful, we’ve encouraged them, showered them with money and validation and given them their own panels or performance slots at fan-organized events. that’s the behavior that contributes to this fandom’s toxicity. it doesn’t JUST make us look bad to other people, it makes it really damn hard for people to enjoy contributing to this community without accidentally running into some really disgusting and hurtful behavior.