This week we step away from the use and gratification theory and change our focus on the aspects of fandom. The McQuail readers mention there are two types of fan which are the “obsessed individual and hysterical crowd” (343). According to McQuail’s reader a person being a fan is consider to “suffer from psychological inadequacy, and are particularly vulnerable to media influence and crowd contagion” (349). I believe that fandom has been in every person life in one aspect are another. We as audience participator have all enjoy and been fans of a favorite TV show, movies, and celebrity. But does that make us an obsessed individual?
In the rise of moderate-effect theories Dolf Zillmann is credited with development of the contemporary entertainment theory. According to Baran &Davis entertainment theory is a way, “to understand what entertaining media content does to us—often without our awareness” (249). Most entertainment theorist believes that we as an audience members are not aware of the content that we assume. Entertainment theorists assume that we as audience members assume that “were just doing what feels good… its only entertainment” (249). An aspect of entertainment theory is the mood management theory which I believe relates to fandom. Mood management theory argues that individuals seek out media content that they expect to improve there mood. Millions of people do not become craze fans of movies like Twilight, Harry Potter, and Lord of the Rings for just enjoyment. I think it involves enjoyment plus has a positive effect on the individual’s mood. Why do you think Twilight, Harry Potter, and Lord of the Rings have such a huge fan base?
I want to pay particular attention to the fandom of the Harry Potter series. The Harry Potter series has an international fan base all around the world. The fandom works through the use of many different forms of media such as, web sites, fan fiction, podcasts, role playing, and fan art .In the CBS News article “Rowling Sues Potter Fan Site”. Here the website http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2007/11/01/entertainment/main3439774.shtml
Harry Potter creator is suing a fan Steve Vander Ark for trying to sell a book version of his popular website called “Harry Potter Lexicon”. Here is the link to the fan website http://www.hp-lexicon.org/index-2.html. The unauthorized Harry Potter guide was going to be an A-to-Z encyclopedia describing the people, magic spells, places and things of characters, and imaginary games featured in the Harry Potter novels, companion books and films. Much of the material in the unauthorized Lexicon guide book is available online. Did an enthusiastic fan of Harry Potter go too far? Was the fan trying to cash on the worldwide success of the Harry Potter franchise? Do you think Steve Vander Ark has the aspect of McQuail’s reader two types of fan which are the “obsessed individual and hysterical crowd”? Do you think that fans of popular shows and movie are obsessed individual (i.e. Grey’s Anatomy, American Idol, and Gossip Girl)? Do you think all fans according to McQuail’s reader “suffer from psychological inadequacy, and are particularly vulnerable to media influence”? Do believe that individuals can be a fan of media without being obsessed? What is your take on fandom?