hey what’s up with the “!” in fandoms? i.e. “fat!” just curious thaxxx <3











I have asked this myself in the past and never gotten an answer.

Maybe today will be the day we are both finally enlightened.

woodsgotweird said: man i just jumped on the bandwagon because i am a sheep. i have no idea where it came from and i ask myself this question all the time

Maybe someone made a typo and it just got out of hand?

I kinda feel like panic!at the disco started the whole exclamation point thing and then it caught on around the internet, but maybe they got it from somewhere else, IDK.

The world may never know…

Maybe it’s something mathematical?

I’ve been in fandom since *about* when Panic! formed and the adjective!character thing was already going strong, pretty sure it predates them.

It’s a way of referring to particular variations of (usually) a character — dark!Will, junkie!Sherlock, et cetera. I have suspected for a while that it originated from some archive system that didn’t accommodate spaces in its tags, so to make common interpretations/versions of the characters searchable, people started jamming the words together with an infix.

(Lately I’ve seen people use the ! notation when the suffix isn’t the full name, but is actually the second part of a common fandom portmanteau. This bothers me a lot but it happens, so it’s worth being aware of.)

“Bang paths” (! is called a “bang"when not used for emphasis) were the first addressing scheme for email, before modern automatic routing was set up. If you wanted to write a mail to the Steve here in Engineering, you just wrote “Steve” in the to: field and the computer sent it to the local account named Steve. But if it was Steve over in the physics department you wrote it to phys!Steve; the computer sent it to the “phys” computer, which sent it in turn to the Steve account. To get Steve in the Art department over at NYU, you wrote NYU!art!Steve- your computer sends it to the NYU gateway computer sends it to the “art” computer sends it to the Steve account. Etc. (“Bang"s were just chosen because they were on the keyboard, not too visually noisy, and not used for a huge lot already).

It became pretty standard jargon, as I understand, to disambiguate when writing to other humans. First phys!Steve vs the Steve right next to you, just like you were taking to the machine, then getting looser (as jargon does) to reference, say, bearded!Steve vs bald!Steve.

So I’m guessing alternate character version tags probably came from that.

100% born of bang paths. fandom has be floating around on the internet for six seconds longer than there has been an internet so early users just used the jargon associated with the medium and since it’s a handy shorthand, we keep it.

Absolutely from the bang paths–saw people using them in early online fandom back in 1993 for referring to things.

I had been doing it for a very, very long time but never actually knew the actual name for it. This is exciting! I like learning things.


Howdy dear followers! They are now more than 2,000 of you, can you believe it?? So we thought that was something worth celebrating.

We’re so pleased and thankful for your attention and support, it’s been great interacting with you guys. But still…who are you? We’d like to get to know you a bit better!

Feel free to click the link and answer that (short) poll – there are no confidential questions, and anyway we’ll only use the data to share it with you on this blog.

See you around, and thank you all for being there!

salt-of-the-ao3’s 2000 followers poll

Fandom, after all, is born of a balance between fascination and frustration: if media content didn’t fascinate us, there would be no desire to engage with it; but if it didn’t frustrate us on some level, there would be no drive to rewrite or remake it

Henry Jenkins (via jbaillier)

Coming into a fandom late






























Coming into a fandom early and watching it become an angry clusterfuck


Being in a dormant fandom that suddenly comes alive again after a new book/movie


Don’t forget about those who come in the midst of a fandom war. 


Accuracy at its best

Being in a fandom and not even knowing there’s a war going on…

all of this shit…lol

When You’re Not In The Fandom But You’re Nosy AF

When you get into a fandom only to discover it’s dead

This gets better every time I see it. 


Being in a dead fandom…

Or being in such a tiny fandom that it feels like youre the only one

The accuracy hurts.

Being in a fandom that had a shit ending.

When you’ve been fangirling long enough, you’ve experienced all of the above.

Being in a fandom meant for kids.

This just gets better..


When you realize that joining the fandom has ruined you

Fandom hell in general


This^^^ just… ALL OF THIS.

Being in so many fandoms that you don’t even know what’s going on


Trying to recruit people to your fandom

Annnnnnndddd it’s back

Being in a fandom which has so many antis


not to be a Pop Culture Pagan or anything but i think there’s a strong argument that fandom shit fills a human need that was once fulfilled primarily by religion and folktales for like 90% of humanity….archetypal roles, cultural standards, grouping together with a bunch of other people to discuss something everyone knows about. clearly it’s not the exact same thing, but think about how much fiction and pop culture affects our mindsets and tell me that today’s nerds don’t defend their faves and their interpretations of the work with the fervor of a devotee. look at how people use fandom terms to talk about anything they’re passionate about (e.g. “the science fandom” “history side of tumblr” “so and so real life person is my problematic fave” “i’m a (insert fandom label) and proud!” and so on). 

idk. i think it’s an interesting aspect to the whole pc paganism theory as well as something to consider when looking at how modern day polytheists talk about and relate to their gods and spirits regardless of where you stand on chaos magic or soft/archetypal polytheism and so on

My heart: Oh man I think we are on the path to catching feelings :):)

My brain: Are you fucking kidding me? Another shit show? Here we go again…

writing tip #2038:


want a fandom? be your own fandom! make 100 accounts on tumblr and create bad fanfiction + fanart of your own story. cry over characters, post headcanons, send anonymous messages to yourself about how much that plot twist surprised you. the only way to fame is to make yourself famous