Young Female Fanbase Stereotypes

Posted by on Sep 10, 2018 in ComLead

Do you ever stop to think about the trends that you may have overlooked due to the fanbase that followed it? Was there ever an artist or a TV show that came onto the scene that you discredited or disliked simply because of the type of people you knew that followed that trend?

This is an all too common situation and unfortunately, the group of fans that this happens with the most is young women.

There is the age-old stereotype that young women only like a musician, actor, or athlete for their looks. And while that may be an added bonus, does that really mean that they don’t also appreciate the work of that person? Further, does that then mean that that person isn’t actually all that talented simply because young girls like them? And if the person’s looks got the young girl interested in something new such as football or rock music, is that really such a bad thing?

Music fans love to forget the fact that the fanbase that shot The Beatles into superstardom was in fact young women who were so immensely devoted to them that the entire timeframe is seen as Beatlemania.

And consistently, musicians are brushed aside for their talents until they start appealing to older and more mature crowds – such as Justin Timberlake. Sure this means that that artist is likely maturing, but the young fans who liked them from the beginning do not suddenly see these artists as any different, they’ve just supported and believed in them the entire journey.

Why is it that an artist is assumed to not be that good if their fanbase is primarily comprised of young women? To put it simply, the assumption is a result of both sexism and ageism. Too many people seem to fall into this belief that these young women are the least knowledgeable about music, art, or sports, and write-off the artist/athlete as talentless due to their main follower-base.

Pay attention to the way that critics tend to undermine the success and talents of artists simply because of their fanbase and make an extra effort to look beyond that and interpret someone’s credibility on your own terms and not based on who supports them. And to take it further: support young women who find passions for different things and do not put them down for the things that they are interested in because there is a high chance that that celebrity they have followed since their time on Disney Channel is soon going to be one of the biggest stars in the world.

Just give the girls a little faith.

Devon Bradley, M.S. Communication & Leadership ’19

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