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Furry or brony?

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Mar. 30th, 2012 | 11:04 pm
music: Thor Harald Johansen - Amazing Pony

It's fascinating to see how many parallels there are between furry fandom (at least the ideal furry fandom we all strive for, without the occasional bickering, immaturity etc. that arises automatically in any sufficiently large group of people) and bronies. For instance, consider the following quotes, taken from this interview:

[W]e tend to be extremely friendly, giving, and caring around each other.

This fandom is one of the most creative assortments I've ever come across on the Internet. The fan-made content that comes from this fandom is absolutely mind-boggling. The music, the art, the writings... the content is endless!

The unique thing about [our fandom] is that there are no leaders. Sure, there are a few prominent members, but we generally accept each other as equals.

This is the friendliest bunch that I have ever met over the Internet, or anywhere for that matter.

What are these talking about — furries or bronies? The answer is "bronies", of course, but it's not clear from the statements themselves; they could be applied to furry fandom word for word, too.

I think that's great, really. I love being a furry; it's been a crucial part of my life for a long time, and it affects every part of my life and defines who and what I am. But at the same time, I think it's wonderful that this feeling of belonging, openness, acceptance, tolerance, creativity, kindness and care is not just limited to furry fandom. I'm glad I'm a brony, too, even if I'm only really lurking on the sidelines there so far.

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Comments {16}

moonhare

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from: mondhasen
date: Mar. 31st, 2012 06:55 pm (UTC)
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Give it time... ;o) Actually, that's a terrible thing for me to say and jaded moonhare says sorry...

I hope this remains fun and fancy free :o)

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Schneelocke

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from: schnee
date: Mar. 31st, 2012 07:07 pm (UTC)
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I hope so. I think they probably learnt a thing or two from furry fandom, both good things to emulate and bad things to avoid, but it remains to be seen just how it'll all play out in the long run.

Sexual content seems to be a very contentious issue, still — understandably so, but one wonders if the "there is that too but we don't really talk about it or acknowledge it and we're definitely ashamed of it" approach is going to work. It's the same thing as with furry fandom; sexuality is part of human nature, and you'll never be able to stamp it out. The various anti-sex groups in furry fandom never really understood that, I think.

As for the bronies, the fact that the show proper is controlled by a corporation whose main interest is making money may complicate things, too. We'll see how it'll all go.

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SoanoS

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from: soanos
date: Apr. 3rd, 2012 07:53 am (UTC)
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Furry or brony? How about both? :)

I see them overlapping quite a bit.

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Schneelocke

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from: schnee
date: Apr. 3rd, 2012 09:37 am (UTC)
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That's true. :)

Also, hi again — haven't seen you/heard from you in ages! ^^

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SoanoS

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from: soanos
date: Apr. 3rd, 2012 09:49 am (UTC)
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Yeah, been a while. I am still alive. :P

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Schneelocke

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from: schnee
date: Apr. 3rd, 2012 10:54 am (UTC)
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I'm glad to hear that. :) What happened? You disappeared all of a sudden.

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SoanoS

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from: soanos
date: Apr. 3rd, 2012 01:24 pm (UTC)
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I am not so sure myself, but I guess it just phased out for a bit. I felt like a bad person for not keeping up reading my friends journals and replying. And it felt overwhelmingly difficult to catch up.

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Schneelocke

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from: schnee
date: Apr. 3rd, 2012 06:05 pm (UTC)
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I can understand that. *hugs* Well, welcome back! :)

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Logan

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from: loganberrybunny
date: Apr. 28th, 2012 08:48 pm (UTC)
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I saw this post via a friend's page, meant to comment at the time, but forgot about it. My memory has been jogged, so...

I'm very new to this pony stuff, but I agree with you to a significant extent. I definitely think it was easier for me to start to explore the MLP fandom as a furry than it would have been had I been starting "cold".

One thing I do think is different is in the type of creative endeavours the two groups go in for. Furry is notoriously drawing-centric, probably at least in part because of the influence of FA. Writing and music -- especially music -- seem to be much more prominent when it comes to the MLP fandom.

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Schneelocke

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from: schnee
date: Apr. 28th, 2012 09:48 pm (UTC)
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That's very true, yes. I'm amazed how broadly creative the brony community is, too; of course drawings still figure prominently, but as you say, there's a lot of music as well, not to mention plushies, custom figurines, papercraft, and more. Oh, and fanfic, yes. :)

Furry fandom also has its writers, of course, and fursuit builders can be considered artists, too; but yes, music stands out. I never understood why there isn't more furry music, especially given how popular dances seem to be at cons.

I'm actually finding it difficult to keep up with it all, though (and I'm also finding it difficult to consciously cut down on it and simply accept that I can't look at everything, even after already applying filters like EqD features that pick out the good stuff). I'd like to be a bit more creative myself; but in addition to not being sure where to start and not having a lot of faith in my artistic abilities, I think I'm also consuming too much. It doesn't leave the mental room for creativity, if that makes sense, so I've got a feeling I should look at what others do just a little less and try to do something myself just a little more.

But I disgress. :)

Yeah, exploring the brony community was easier for me than getting started with furry fandom, too. Everything's just more connected today, and I also had a much better idea of what to except, both content-wise and in terms of the community itself. When I got started with furry fandom, I really didn't have any idea what "furry" actually meant (except for other furries, pretty much noone did at that time; it was literally unknown to most), and I also had no idea what being a furry was actually about and what you'd actually do in practice.

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Logan

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from: loganberrybunny
date: Apr. 29th, 2012 12:57 pm (UTC)
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I think ponyfic is more prominent within that community than furryfic is within that one, and again I think FA has a lot to do with it. There's no easy way to find fanfic on FA, since its search facility is so poor, and of course you can't just glance at a story the way you can with a picture.

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Schneelocke

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from: schnee
date: May. 1st, 2012 07:39 pm (UTC)
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Aye, that's very true. I think ponyfic has it easier because the characters are already established, too, and there's certain categories (e.g. shipping) that people are already familiar with. The tagging of stories (e.g. "Comedy", "Slice-of-Life", "Sad", "Grimdark", "Adventure" etc.) also helps; there's a categorization scheme in place that doesn't quite exist the same way in furry fandom.

And yeah, FA's search isn't great, is it? At least it *has* any sort of search these days — it wasn't long ago that it didn't exist, period.

I also think in furry fandom, written fiction has always a bit more of a highbrow thing; it used to and still is published in 'zines, and also in book form, but it's not the commoner's art form, if you will. Everyone and their dog seems to write pony fanfic (and clopfic, for that matter), but in furry fandom, writers are expected to live up to a relatively high standard. (Which is NOT to say that pony fanfic, by and large, isn't good.)

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Logan

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from: loganberrybunny
date: May. 1st, 2012 11:16 pm (UTC)
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I must say, I've been quite (pleasantly) surprised with how good some of the ponyfic is. One of the first stories I read on FIMFiction was Naked Singularity, which is tremendously funny. Even when the underlying plot1 isn't particularly original, there are still some pretty nice stories around; Sunny Skies All Day Long is a good example.

On the other hand, I'm not keen on the minimum word counts that both FIMFiction and Equestria Daily enforce; I think the lower limit is 1,000 words on the former and 2,500 words on the latter. That means that it's hard to find MLP-themed poetry, for example, as there's nowhere obvious for it to go and it ends up scattered all over the place.

1in the dictionary sense of the word!

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Schneelocke

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from: schnee
date: May. 4th, 2012 03:27 pm (UTC)
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Heh, "plot". ;) Where does that term come from, anyway, BTW?

I may have to check out those stories you've mentioned, too; I'm not a voracious reader, but if they're good, I'll take a look. :)

Interesting, I didn't know there was a lower limit on the word count on either site; that seems like an invitation to go for quantity rather than quality. And no exceptions / special sections for poetry? Maybe someone should start a "poenytry" site.

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Logan

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from: loganberrybunny
date: May. 5th, 2012 12:22 am (UTC)
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It comes from this macro, posted somewhere (not sure where) in the earlyish days of the fandom.

"Naked Singularity" absolutely nails Twilight's character, I think. Lots of science in the story, too. Well, in a way... =;)

No exceptions as far as I know. There's fanfiction.net and DA, of course, but still.

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Schneelocke

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from: schnee
date: May. 5th, 2012 09:06 pm (UTC)
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Ah, thanks for the link. :) That's a good one. ;)

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