cereta posted an entry "What I assume you know about me", listing things to give context for her LJ posts. It's a cool idea (so of course it became a meme), though I'm actually not even sure what I assume you know about me, or what would be most useful to know to provide context. Clearly I think much less about audience than others.
- I am and always have been a fan. I can't even remember a time before I self-identified as a fan, and did fannish stuff, like collecting and drawing comics. And I don't mean that in a "feral fan" sense either, where fans are fans but not aware of fandom and kind of retroactively realize they've been fans all along, and everything just kind of makes sense after meeting other fans, i.e. I was in fandom and interacted with other fans since I was a kid, well before I found internet fandom. Like, I attended comic cons, bought zines, met with other local fans at comic workshops... And a kind of corollary to this:
1.a)I'm not a newbie to internet-based fandom, either. I have been in internet based (media) fandom for quite some time now. Actually the first time I used the internet it was with the purpose to find fan resources I was sure had to be out there, so I visited my older sister at the university to get access to newsgroups and FTP sites with FAQs about comics and stuff. That was back when Lynx and Mosaic were still the main web browsers and most fandom stuff was still on usenet or on FTPs and the most useful way to find stuff was this search thing called gopher or something?, IIRC in 1993 or 1994... Heh, nostalgia.
However since I could only use the net in really inconvenient ways then, I didn't participate in internet fandom until some years later when I had personal internet access, so I only really came to internet fandom late 1997/early 1998 when there were already many web sites and lists and lots of infrastructure besides newsgroups. So it's not like I was really active in the first-wave of internet-based fandom, and obviously I'm not familiar with all corners of fandom and their specific netiquettes, but still, I have been around for a while, and I assume people know that.
- Fandom is important to me, and rather central in my life. Few things aggravate me more than people (whether creators, other fans, or just random people) patronizingly telling me (or fans in general) "to get a life" or similar things, when they encounter fannish behavior that's different or more intense from their (non-)involvement in fandom. If you want to discuss whether my interest in fandom is "healthy" or whatever, kindly do that somewhere else, not with me or in my LJ. I just don't care, for me fandom simply is that important, many of my voluntary social interactions (inept as they probably are compared to those of that mythical "well-adjusted adult" person) have always centered around fandom, and I don't expect that to change. I mean, like I said in (1) I have self-identified as a fan long before I discovered or decided on any of the other "labels" I apply to myself.
- I am not in the US, even though I post in English and most of my fandoms are about US or UK media (except for comics, which I like from all over as long as they are Western comics and not manga). From that follows that I may not be able to watch a movie or a tv show, or get a book or a comic until quite some time after it was first available elsewhere, no matter that I'm in the fandom already and just as much a fan of the source. So I appreciate consideration when it comes to spoilers. I do take care to avoid spoilery places if I don't want to be spoiled, and I realize that watching/labeling for spoilers for a long time is inconvenient, and that it is also up to me to actively avoid being spoiled, and don't have nearly as extreme views on spoilers as some, but still.
- I don't keep RL and fandom identity separate, however I try to keep this LJ mostly fannish and public. There are very few posts that are locked or filtered in any way. I certainly don't mind anybody linking my entries in their LJs, communities, websites, or doing any other things that are generally considered okay to do with published things. I like being read, and I'm thrilled when people friend me, but I don't friend back automatically. I see my LJ similar to my website, in fact for a long time I crossposted to my blog and my LJ, though currently my blog is defunct, because Greymatter developed issues after the number of entries reached a certain point. As my website is obviously public, I don't mind normal links to any content, not even text links that go to a piece of art directly, because I get that it is cumbersome to link to index pages if you want to point to something specific, no matter how much I'd sometimes like for everybody to see my context info, disclaimers, and such stuff before looking at bits and pieces of my site.
That I keep my LJ and website as accessible as possible, including settings for it to be indexed by search engines, providing tags so people can find things easily etc, does not mean however that I'm okay with people reposting or hotlinking my artwork or other images, like scans and icons and such. So far I didn't have any problems with that within fandom, but it happened a couple of times with artwork hotlinked from more or less random places. I intentionally don't block hotlinking from my webspace because I crosspost art and other images, and want to be able to use my images myself in different places, but that still doesn't mean I'm okay with others hotlinking.
- I try hard to keep Emo!RatCreature out of this LJ, meaning that I rather don't post at all when I know I can't post fandom-related things, sometimes even for longer stretches of time. So the frequency of my posts is not consistent at all, though I always have the best intentions to post regularly.
- I am not a very productive fan. There are sporadic times with more activity, but I'm not consistent in producing any content, but rather whimsical. Like, I might post some kind of content rather frequently for a while and then not at all. At some point I have posted reviews/blather about more or less current comics, character/continuity analysis, squeeing about tv eps, fanart, recs, but to be honest, even at the best of times this LJ is not exactly a space bustling with interesting and sparkly fannish activity.
- I am not very interested in fandom meta, fandom sociology or things like that. I like "meta" that is about a source, or even about comparing and analyzing different sources, but I am not much interested in meta about fandom itself. To clarify, as a fan, I have an interest in fandom as a community, and because of that I may participate in discussions that are also the things that commonly fascinate the "meta fandom fans", but I'm not much into the (academic) self reflection side of things, that ponders how fandom/fanfic/slash/whatever works in the context of some academic theory. I don't care. I'm not a "fan of fandom", I'm in fandom because I'm a fan of certain tv shows/books/movies/comics.
I also feel quite ambivalent about academic study of fandom, and I'll never, ever fill out or participate in any of those fandom sociology surveys/polls/studies, and not because of any privacy or anonymity issues. I mean, I find it rather cool when academics publish theories about the sources and the media themselves, like way back I attended some university lectures (open to the general public) from cultural studies theorists on comics and their visual/narrative language, comic genres, history and all sorts of comic-related subjects. And I like to read stuff like that. I have more of a problem with academic research in fandom when academics don't research the media, but research the fans and the community. I'm rather ambivalent about that for several reasons, a lot of which have to do with power dynamics and questions of definition power that ensue as soon as there are "experts" on something, even if they understand themselves to be part of the group they research. It's probably because my experiences with academics (who usually thought that their theoretical approach was really essential) in mixed groups with academics (in a significant proportion) and non-academics (in that I include academics not from that particular or related field) hasn't been all positive. Not so much in fandom, but for example in queer and feminist groups and in a community radio. Like, academics sometimes seem to use their "expertise" like a weapon even while claiming that of course they don't intend to exclude anyone or would never dream of being patronizing. Um, yeah, I probably have just issues... I'm not anti-intellectual or anything. Honestly.
- I don't see myself as a slasher. I like slash, but my main attraction to specific fandoms or fandom in general is not about slash, and I don't self-identify as a "slash fan". For me liking slash is just like liking gen or het.
- I am multi-fannish, and I'm far more likely to acquire a new fandom than to completely loose interest in an older fandom. That said, my main focus, as far as fanfic reading and following discussions is concerned, is usually only on a couple of fandoms at a time. Currently the DCU, Harry Potter, and Star Wars. Though I'll follow links to interesting Stargate Atlantis fic and discussion if linked from my f-list, but don't actively seek stuff in that fandom (not yet anyway).
ETA (27.01.2009): Since then my fandom interests have drifted, and SGA has become my main fandom for a long time now, joined by Supernatural, and more recently Merlin. I still like all of the above and a number of other fandoms.
- I'm far more into squee than into fannish griping, and I really dislike character bashing. I mean, it's not that I never complain about things in the sources I like, obviously since I'm a fan, I'm bound to nitpick and complain sometimes, but I never understood being a fan of something even while apparently being completely dissatisfied with the source and/or the main characters. Way back I was mystified by those Sentinel fans who only talked about how crappy the show was and how much better the fanfic, while I was in TS fandom because I watched the show on tv first and loved it, and then found fanfic for it. And I still don't really get that attitude. Anyway, I stay away from those parts of fandom, and anybody who's trying to convince me that I'm wrong for liking something because it is really crappy and I ought to realize that, is bound to fail, and annoy me besides.