Many scholars see the BL community as a queer space that has the potential to subvert existing expectations about gender or sexuality (Stanley 2008; Wood 2006) and the capitalist system itself (Donovan 2008). In the case of China, the BL fan community can also provide a public sphere for female participants to discuss social issues such as governmental policies and writers’ ethics (Yang and Xu 2016a). However, due to the sensitive nature of their subject matter and its sexual content, BL and danmei communities in China can be quite secretive and restricting: registration is often difficult and requires prior approval, and certain materials are only accessible to high-level members who have spent a lot of time and effort obtaining their status in the forum. This article is a case study that explores the limiting side of a BL fan community 3n5b in China and how the community creates a hierarchical system of membership.
Wu, Xianwei. 2019. “Hierarchy within Female ACG Fandom in China.” Transformative Works and Cultures, no. 30. https://dx.doi.org/10.3983/twc.2019.1456.