Examining Fandom Rules And Why Should I Care? - FreebieMNL

Of Bandwagons And Loyalty: An Examination Of Fandom Rules

Is being part of many fandoms not allowed?

A.M. Hoops posted a community poll about the Golden State Warriors losing game one to the Boston Celtics. The YouTube content creator asked what panic level the fandom was at after that loss at home. I answered with “0-3. We got this.”

I then said that this was the first finals in a long time where I’d be fine with whoever wins. Both the Warriors and the Celtics had great offense and defense. Both were hungry for the win. In my mind, both deserved to win the championship.

There were several replies under my comment. Most shared my sentiments, but one commenter’s question got a lot of engagement. They asked how I felt about the 2021 NBA Finals when the Milwaukee Bucks faced the Phoenix Suns.

Another user replied, saying no one cheers for the Suns unless they’re fans of Chris Paul or they live in Phoenix. I mentioned how Steve Nash was still active when I last cheered for the Suns.

It was then that someone commented that it was unusual for NBA fans to support so many teams. A debate ensued, and I couldn’t help but wonder: Are there rules to being a fan?

I like a lot of things

The discussion ended on a somewhat positive note. Many agreed that it was alright to cheer for a team other than your favorite. It’s what happens when your favorite doesn’t make the finals. I didn’t mention that I actually have several favorite teams to avoid opening another can of worms.

I like many players and teams because I enjoy the game. Each team has a signature style of play that makes watching more exciting. I’ve seen basketball evolve as more players and teams joined the league. I’m like that with other forms of entertainment. So are a lot of the people I know. Whether it’s actors, bands, or sports teams, we like and root for more than one.

Fandom drama

Britney Spears versus Christina Aguilera. Celtics versus Lakers. BTS versus EXO. Every local love team versus each other.

You can be a fan of one or the other but never both. The idea has been around for a long time. To some extent, it’s understandable. These people are in competition with each other, after all.

A friend once asked me which K-Pop groups I liked. I remember how shocked she was when I said I liked both BAP and EXO. When both groups were rookies, there was intense competition between them. There was a lot of mudslinging between their fandoms. All that was for naught, because the 2012 MAMA Best New Male Artist award went to Busker Busker. Watching it unfold was exhausting. Neither group won the top awards, and neither fandom was better for it.

The “my idol is better than yours” narrative is still ongoing across various fandoms. Everything is a competition and some fans think it’s a betrayal if you cheer for someone else. This may be why many think it’s not acceptable to be part of several fandoms.

Don’t limit yourself to one fandom

But I’m of the idea that it’s better to explore everything rather than limit yourself to one thing. Whether it’s movies, music, sports, or whatever, being part of many fandoms means you have more things to enjoy. Discover new sounds. Fall in love with different characters. Watch the game move forward.

Is there a hardline rule that you can’t be a fan of many things? No. If what you do and what you like brings joy into your life, no one can tell you to stop enjoying them.

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(By the way, the Golden State Warriors won over Boston in six games. Congratulations to the 2022 champs from this Chicago Bulls fan!)

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