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Digital Fandom 2.0

New Media Studies


Paul Booth

In this completely revised and updated version of Digital Fandom, Paul Booth extends his analysis of fandom in the digital environment. With new chapters that focus on the economics of crowdfunding, the playfulness of Tumblr, and the hybridity of the fan experience, alongside revised chapters that explore blogs, wikis, and social networking sites, Digital Fandom 2.0 continues to develop the «philosophy of playfulness» of the contemporary fan. Booth’s analysis reveals the many facets of the digital fan experience, including hybrid fandom, demediation, and the digi-gratis economy. With a foreword from noted fan scholar Matt Hills, Booth's new Digital Fandom 2.0 shows the power of the fan in the digital age.


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Introduction to the Second Edition


Time moves differently in academic publishing and in digital culture. New technologies are designed and created, flourish, and wither, so quickly that publishing about them is guaranteed to be out-of-date; academic publishing is notoriously time-consuming and prone to obsolesce. Writing academically about new technology is therefore a seemingly futile gesture, as one can never hope to be caught up. I originally wrote Digital Fandom in 2008–2009; it was based on my dis- sertation from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Fandom Studies: Fan Studies Re-Written, Re-Read, Re-Produced. Digital Fandom was published in 2010, not even a decade ago. And yet in the time between the book’s publication and today, enormous changes in the digital environment have signaled a need for a significant revision to the original. At the same time, my own views on fandom and fan scholarship have evolved since 2008. My writing has changed as well. Reading Digital Fandom again is like revisiting a childhood home. It’s familiar and comforting but strangely uncanny as well, as if it was written by someone like but also unlike me. A specter of Paul Booth resides in these pages, but no longer fully encapsulates me or my thinking. Of course, no book can fully capture the entirety of one’s mindset—it’s a snapshot, designed for permanence only through elision—and as scholarship on fandom has grown over the past decade, Digital Fandom remains permanently fixed in time. 2 digital fandom 2.0 The book you are currently reading is my attempt to revise Digital...

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