In reality, we feel that instead of trying to gauge the level of fandom and the fans’ (presumed) internal motivations, it is more appropriate to use an approach that looks at the variety of fan practices as a complex system. Thus, instead of examining the level of involvement or the creative practices of the fans in the Harry Potter universe, we propose to reconstruct and interpret the complex patterns of public affairs-related activities among them. To put this more simply, what motivates our research is not a desire to separate the simple spectator, the lurker, from the fanatical fans, but to look instead at the variety of follower (fan) practices and how they overlap and intersect with an interest in public affairs. These considerably more mundane, everyday reactions tend to be delimited by the preset options that Facebook provides its users with. These mundane online activities, reactions, and digital footprints are substantial not only in terms of their sheer numbers but also in providing a more comprehensive overview of the characteristics of a decisive portion of the audience, thereby giving the observer a more accurate picture of the fanbase.DESSEWFFY, TIBOR, AND MIKES MEZEI. 2020. “FANS AND POLITICS IN AN ILLIBERAL STATE.” IN “FANDOM AND POLITICS,” EDITED BY ASHLEY HINCK AND AMBER DAVISSON, SPECIAL ISSUE, TRANSFORMATIVE WORKS AND CULTURES, NO. 32. HTTPS://DOI.ORG/10.3983/TWC.2019.1757.
Proposed methodology based on researching Hungarian Harry Potter fans