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How to Be a Good Member of the Blender Community

105

How to Be a Good Member of the Blender Community blender community

Jonathan Williamson has written a good opinion article on the negative effects of Blender fanboyism.

Jonathan writes:

In short, the Blender community has a lot to be proud of. However, the community has one big downfall, it’s users. The majority of Blender users are friendly, responsible, and contribute to the community and the software in positive ways. There is, however, a small minority of users that do more harm to the community and Blender’s reputation than good. This group of users are generally referred to as the “Blender Fans.” They are the users that refuse to hear anything bad about Blender and will standup in blind support of it, regardless of what the issue at hand might be. As is common with these small minority groups, they also speak the loudest and often give a false impression of Blender and its community.

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  • http://PolyKhromeGames.blogspot.com/ Brian Lockett

    I'm glad someone's finally saying something about this. I'm especially glad it's someone as well-known and respected among the Blender Community as Jonathan Williamson giving a good word about it. Nothing hurts support for a community more than "extreme" supporters, A good supporter is someone who loves what they love without needing to disrespect the "other" guys (3ds Max users, Maya users, etc.) or deny yet-to-be addressed shortcomings with what they love.

    • http://www.blurredmotion.net/ stephen

      Well said Brian. Also, Samurai Jack, awesome sauce.

      • http://PolyKhromeGames.blogspot.com/ Brian Lockett

        Awesome sauce, indeed. And thanks.

  • roofoo

    Maya, Max, etc have their fanboys too. It's not just a Blender phenomenon.

    • http://PolyKhromeGames.blogspot.com/ Brian Lockett

      No one's making the claim that Maya and Max and so forth do not have their own "fanboys." There's nothing to be done about their own fanboys. The only thing being pointed out here is that such fanboys among the Blender community, and in particular, how much they do tend to contribute to the stigma that Blender isn't a capable professional tool or even developed enough to prove useful in professional workflow. When some members of the community insist on acting like children about their harmful "support" for Blender, it rather makes Blender look like a toy. Again, there's no claim here that only Blender has their over-zealous members among this community--it's simply addressing this issue here among ourselves.

      • roofoo

        I think a lot of this phenomenon comes from the fact that Blender’s
        userbase is overwhelmingly young and inexperienced. Lots and lots of
        kids are using Blender since it’s free and they can’t yet afford a
        commercial package. Sadly, many kids today haven’t mastered the art of
        tact yet. But this shouldn’t affect people’s perception of the software,
        its capabilities are what they are, regardless of how a few vocal users
        act.

        • Joe

          I think you're making a BIG assumption.

          • roofoo

            O RLY? I've seen informal polls of Blender user ages and the vast majority were in the teens or younger.

        • alex kemmler

          True, if kids are interested in picking up 3D, Blender will probably be their first choice. Years ago, it was mine. I'm 27 now, but I started using blender more than 10 years ago!

          I think this is a good thing, but it's up to older users to remind the new people that fanboyism is not welcome.

        • Atlantisbase

          It's worth stating that you can be not a kid and still not be able to afford a commercial package. Actually, I don't know how anyone can afford Max or Maya.

          • http://twitter.com/CGVitamins CG Vitamins

            Autodesk products are free for non commercial use. If you want to get a job in the industry, you learn the software and apply to the studios.. few actually make a success at just "freelancing"...especially right off the bat. So there really is no excuse to not learn maya or max, doing so would give a better understanding and even appreciated of what blender can and cannot do.

          • Atlantisbase

            Since when and where is that hidden!!! I know that they have an academic program, but last I checked the goods still cost a few hundred and there was something like a 3 year limit on the licenses.
            Also, I should clarify, since you seemed to infer a bit from my statement, I have no interest in the industry, I just do this for kicks.

          • http://twitter.com/CGVitamins CG Vitamins

            They have had it since 2010 I believe. Here is the link, it hasnt really been hidden... http://students.autodesk.com/?nd=download_center

          • JeroenM

            Autodesk software is free for a very specific group of people: students, those who work in eductional institutions like teachers and people who are in some Autodesk program. Which means that the software is not free for about 85 - 90+ % of the world

        • tinonetic

          It is only natural that the majority of those using it are young. I know, many of us, thinking back... we've had a passion ignited for 3D & VFX when we were very young. The difference then was that we could not even dream of having a piece of equipment to create those "wonders"

          - PC's were for the rich
          - Even the idea of creating something required not just powerful processing but other (traditional) audio-visual & animation equipment and expertise
          - There was no broadband/affordable internet
          - The idea of opensource (at least in my time) had not yet spread to the type of content creation achievable with today's FOSS software
          - There was no YouTube, no tutorials and the knowledge was not open. Basically, near-zero mindshare.

          But today, these "kids" get on the net and see what they can do with that one piece of software. With all that energy, few responsibilities and more open/non-rigid minds...it is no surprise at all.

          I am certain, these "kids" will grow with the software. Us, old guys, are relatively first generation users of Blender...many still possessing that "kid-passion" that has brought the younger guys today into Blender. Either as a hobby or as a profession.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Shawn-Kearney/578944498 Shawn Kearney

      Blender's development is community oriented, rather than commercial oriented. This is a good and powerful thing, but only if the community is in the right place.

  • David Stringham

    I may not be involved with the community enough to have really experienced this fanboyism. However, I do know at least one Blenderhead who would not listen to any suggestion that Blender was not the greatest 3d program. Fortunately, I haven't heard any radical, pigheaded fans.

  • tool

    Every group of people supporting something (politics, religion, software, sport, you name it) can be split into different categories and one of them is the fanatics/extremists who cause more harm than do good. I think it's just inevitable as long as they're not violent I wouldn't worry too much about them. Even the biggest brand (A**le) not only have them but encourages them to be like that.

    • http://PolyKhromeGames.blogspot.com/ Brian Lockett

      I agree with the first line of your comment. Though, I think in particular, with Blender, with it rising more than ever out of the stigma of being just a "amateur/hobbyist" tool, with Blender making its best strides in development and with the rise of Blender-oriented profession venues like Blender Network, for our case in particular, it would help if we address the issue of such "fanboyism."

      I think even just speaking out on the issue with a voice of reason about it can at least promote just that--a voice of reason about the matter. And it shows about the community that we are at least aware of the problem dwelling among our midst, we do have a voice of reason about it, and we are not affiliated with just such the sort as you have described. In short, This helps.

  • Fanboy-ism

    A: Wow! Blender is really good. I didn't know that!
    B: Yes, Blender is the most useful package in the world. It's also free!
    A: Forget it, I'm not going to use it then.
    B:Why, what happened!
    A: Because you're soo fanboy!
    A: What?

    This one is just a joke guys :)

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Illian-Quinn/100000519222725 Illian Quinn

      That's exactly how it starts and it's probably a good thing you left out how it becomes a vicious Mexican Cockfight where only one can survive...

      I'm sure a majority of us can guess how threads like that end?

      "Closed"

  • Guitar

    I'm sorry but I just don't get it? Does this straw-man even exist?
    I never met or heard of anyone matching the description in this article. I know there are overzealous users but, to think that an overzealous user is any reflection of the object being used or of other users is very poor reasoning.
    If the complaint is about inappropriate social behavior due to a lack of social or critical thinking skills, again this has noting to do with Blender. Personally, I like Jonathan, and like Jonathan I would never take the position he described no matter how much I liked Blender (and I do like Blender) but the over zealous users are as much fun to watch (and play with) as the overly skeptic and the well balanced. It adds to the diversity (and I love diversity). I just don't think this straw-man of his is ANY real concern whatsoever.

    Perhaps Mr. Williamson just wants a one-size-fits-all edict to rule over all posters and to dictate the only proper behavior of all future Blender users... or might that be a straw-man as well?? :) Sorry Jonathan, I look forward to your next Blender tutorial but I absolutely dread your next civic lesson. :)

    • http://twitter.com/carter2422 Jonathan Williamson

      Having been a part of the community for quite some time I can say with certainty that the "straw man" certainly does exist :)

      Ask most anyone on the PolyCount or CGSociety forums if they've ever experienced Blender fanboyism, you may be surprised.

      • Guitar

        And that's the point Jonathan. It is a straw-man and not a good representation of the average Blender user. It's easy to set up and easy to knock down. You titled this as if these straw-men can NOT be GOOD members of the Blender Community. BS.
        I think these "fanboys" most probably ARE good members of the Blender community even if they do lack the maturity to express restraint in their love of Blender.

        • http://twitter.com/carter2422 Jonathan Williamson

          In that case my apologies for not making the title clear enough. Of course these people can be good, positive, and productive members of the community.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Illian-Quinn/100000519222725 Illian Quinn

          With all do respects, I Honestly I don't believe you've had enough exposure to the intertwining circles of communities to justify your opinion in an honest manner???

          Polycount has been around for a very very long time and I'm pretty positive if you did a search for Blender on their forums, that you'd find nearly a decades worth of fanboy posts on there...

          All I'm saying is spend a little time to research it, you'll be surprised.

        • CorsairX

          If they can't produce a reasoned response then they can't produce a constructive response, so I'd have to disagree.

      • notastrawman

        I have a friend that is a MOD over at cgtalk and he hates blender users for this reason. The fanboyinsm there is strong. Even the cgtalk IRC has a RULE, "no blender talk".

        • http://www.theemptyroom.co.uk/ Dewald

          "no blender talk", are you kidding me.

          Why not rather have a "no douche bags" rule.

          That just shows the kind of discrimination against blender.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Illian-Quinn/100000519222725 Illian Quinn

          Their IRC chat is hardly significant if not dead...

          Should we worry about 10 people who ban, BAN, ban, anyone from uttering and/or merely, whispering, the name Blender?

          I think not!
          huh huh huh!
          Sorry, I thought it was amusing...

        • http://www.theemptyroom.co.uk/ Dewald

          cgtalk irc on freenet is the "unofficial autodesk irc" hence no blender talk. Lame.

    • Chris S

      I can also say with certainty that this "straw man" exists. I have seen it and been directly affected by it.

    • http://twitter.com/carter2422 Jonathan Williamson

      Here's a direct quote from a user just now on Polycount:

      "Many times as a matter of fact. I was so turned off that at one point I didnt even want to bother seeing the improvements of 2.5. It was to the point where if someone mentioned Blender in the workplace the first reaction would be to say something negative about Blender...meaning there was a negative emotional response tied to the program directly related to the comments seen on the blender forums.

      If you mention any autodesk product, you will get attacked and insulted by certain members of the community. You cant talk about what you find hard to work with in blender or what could be improved...and god forbid if you mention you like how another application implemented a certain UI element or feature.

      Part of the problem is that when you see these fanboys, and see the work they put out...it looks childish...something that would be embarrassing to post in any other applications forum..yet they have the nerve to criticize other applications, users or those trying to find a way to mix blender in with their current pipeline.

      I think it is also a problem if the fanboy input is loud enough that other users who use multiple apps cannot be allowed to have any input on the future of Blender. In short, it doesnt feel very welcoming nor does it imply that Blender can or should be in the same ballpark as other apps and their artist. That cant be good."

      http://www.polycount.com/forum/showthread.php?p=1651931#post1651931

      • Guitar

        This fella "I was so turned off", is just another straw-man because I would think that MOST who heard that level of devotion would at least check out the source of such devotion. Address a "fanboy" on the spot if you take issue with them.
        To me, if you really want to be a good member of the Blender community then you listen to everyone and encourage them all to comment, complain, request and contribute. You don't ask them to SHUT UP.

        • http://twitter.com/carter2422 Jonathan Williamson

          No one is asking anyone to shut up, merely asking that people add a bit of reason to their posts. I agree, listen to everyone and encourage everyone to contribute in their own way.

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/Illian-Quinn/100000519222725 Illian Quinn

            Jonathan, you're falling prey to somebody who's clearly from a different generation who hasn't a clue to the history...

            In which case, you have to give a history lesson! XD

          • Guitar

            That say's it perfectly Jonathan!
            I couldn't agree more. I think the strength of the entire 3D community is found in its diversity just as Blender finds strength in its diversity. These "fanboys" may not realize it yet or maybe their just be blowing off some steam.

          • Justy

            unless they are contributing as fanboys? fanaticism is intrinsically linked with younger generations as a form of appreciation. It's up to the reader to determine the validity of the commentary they are reading.

        • http://twitter.com/CGVitamins CG Vitamins

          Guitar, me thinks you use the phrase "straw man" too much...to the point where you are straw manning yourself. Notice the words "at one point", meaning it specifically referred to a specific point as opposed to a generalized statement that encompasses their entire user experience. If you study behavioral science you would find that any positive or negative reaction can influence the over all experience, even lead to logical reasons why one would not want to continue to be a part of something they have a negative response to when tied to user experience. It is completely rational behavior and tied to the users stimuli.

          On the flip side, Blender isnt the only tool in town that can accomplish what an artist needs. Therefore it is still rational for the artist to put it aside in favor of an application that is more or less tied to a positive emotional response.

          There was a time, and still is, when many new zbrush users throw their hands up in frustration. Since there are practically no applications that can compete on the same level as zbrush, they have no choice but to tough through it regardless of the negative emotional responses that might be had. Blender does not have that same luxury....it is competing in an over saturated 3d market...so even more so it has to give a better and more welcoming user experience. Blender doesnt have the luxury of allowing extremism and fanboyism, especially when the work of such fanboys is barely better than something their kids can toss together in another application.

          What you should encourage is a civil discourse, not this idea that everyone should say everything they feel, even if its on the offensive regarding Blender.

          I visited the Modo forums recently and was pleasantly surprised to see many of its users happily criticize their own application of choice, even envy other features in other apps or suggest changes. To me this is the difference in maturity and immaturity in a user base.

          One fundamental flaw seen in some Blender communities is this idea that change is bad...but logically one cannot be upset at change when the entire project is open source..rather the expectations have to be in line with the concept of an open source project that will by default always be ever changing. Some one some where has to really drive this point home with the Blender Community, it is also what I believe gives Blender the edge over other applications in that regard... changeability and evolution. Not selective stagnation.

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/Illian-Quinn/100000519222725 Illian Quinn

            In regards to the Modo forums, I have had nothing but pleasant experiences within their community. I remember some years back I made a post criticizing how over-engineered their selection system was. And still to this day, veterans of that program refer to my thread (or something they read) as a point of interest when they're in a deep discussion of constructive criticism.

            It kinda warms the heart! lol

            Is that a good example of constructive criticism without being fanboyish?

          • alexkemmler

            A lot of newbies aren't able to digest constructive criticism. It's either a personal attack or a compliment, those are the only sorts of communication fanbois can understand. A seasoned artist will welcome constructive criticism more than any other type of comment.

      • alex kemmler

        One thing I think we should avoid is denigrating people's opinions because their work isn't very good. Although it certainly doesn't help the credibility of one's arguments if one's output sucks, it would be harmful to the community to develop this habit. People have to start somewhere, and like it or not, as the only really good and free 3D software, Blender is often going to be that 'somewhere'.

        Rather, let's denigrate people's opinions because they are stupid opinions. And let's evaluate work on its own merits.

        If people feel like newbies aren't welcome, the lifeblood of the blender community will peter out. Today's newbie is tomorrow's mike pan!

    • http://www.facebook.com/raphael.d.barros Raphael De Araújo Barros

      Yep, sadly it exists, and I have a really good (or should I say bad?) example: there's a teacher at my university whose work (and didactics) is really bad and his fanboyism makes lots of students dislike the software to a point of almost hatred.

    • Numpz

      Finally, a rational well thought out commentary. Well put Guitar!

    • http://www.the-furnace.talktalk.net/ Fire Angel

      You don't get around much if you haven't seen these people, because they exist and there are sadly lots of them; I've actually stopped using a site where I used to post in the forums to get away from some of them. Their insane declarations that Blender is better than Maya/LightWave/Max/etc. at everything 3D (it certainly isn't) and that it was the most stable software on Earth were, in my view, genuinely insane. It's great to be enthusiastic about the software you use, but temper it with some reality. I know a lot of us do, but I assure you many don't.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Justin-Barrett/100002826740190 Justin Barrett

    well.....in all fairness blender is something different to everyone, and because a person does not get paid to use blender or is a hobbyist or a just a fan...we are losing sight that blender is not abut being accepted by the industry....F-bomb the industry...it is about 3d for the masses.....I think even Ton "the face of blender" is losing sight of that....now...the fact that blender is trying to do everything that all the other packages can do...I'm ok with that, everyone wants new shiny features...but what bugs me is blenders new role of competing with them(those companies)...am I a fanboy, hell yeah! now I want the other companies to mimic blender and blender stop mimicking them!...

    • http://twitter.com/carter2422 Jonathan Williamson

      You're right, Blender is for everyone and should remain for everyone. But I would also argue that promoting a more grounded community, with a more reasonable stance is one of the best ways to make Blender even better for everyone, including studios, hobbyists, freelancers, etc.

      Several people have brought up the argument of "Apple has fanboys and it hasn't hurt them!" which I would agree with. However, Blender has a key difference from Apple, Blender's entire support basis is the community. Unlike Apple, we don't have dedicated support and resources that are provided by the Blender Foundation, we have the community. And for this reason I feel we need to put far more emphasis on creating a mature, reasoned, and realistic community that is able to provide support for everyone, not just the casual users and freelancers.

      • StayCalm

        I whole heartily agree with Jonathan on this subject. I've always been turned off by the fanboyinsm of some blender users.

    • fiend

      IMHO I do not think it is losing sight trying to make it feature-packed. As long as it performs reasonably well and its quality is maintained, it is a welcome thing to have a near all-in-one piece of software where one can do alot of work in. At the back of my mind I do worry about continuity.

      It is almost inevitable that it will compete/look like its competing with commercial apps. Because their features are the features we want. We want to do that too in Blender. We dont have the money to do it with the high-quality industry standard commercial software. So when we hear its coming to Blender, we encourage & support the decision in whatever way we can.

      And its not that we primarily want those features so it can be mine's-better-than-yours contest.

  • Boris

    I didn't really see this either, but then I thought about it from his perspective, or the perspective of anyone trying to make a living via Blender. I'd be cringing every time a forum post or comment goes over the top too!

    But as someone said, it is a young and inexperienced userbase, many of whom probably does not have english as their native tongue.

  • Pete

    So how do i become a good member, without being overly zealous about this wonderfull software? ;)

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Illian-Quinn/100000519222725 Illian Quinn

      You have to be very open minded, see things from all angles, and give an unbiased quantitative reply that explains your case while also seeing eye to eye to whoever you're debating with.

      Otherwise, just ignore it and don't say anything at all.

  • Joe

    Sounds like the special interest groups in Washington:
    As is common with these small minority groups, they also speak the loudest and often give a false impression of...

  • http://www.facebook.com/rogerioperdiz Rogério Perdiz

    I realized this after noting that I sometimes was being a Fanboy, not just of blender, but of others work too:
    One thing is admiring one or a group of persons work and use it as inspiration and/or motivation for improve oneself or a "product" in some way (that's cool)... the other is blindly support one person or product disregarding what is the real quality and/or value of it, rising them or it to some kind of unreachable Super Status condition (don't do it).

    Everything has is strong and weak points and everyone can be as good or better then anyone, so if you want to be Fan of someone be a Fan of yourself ;)

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Shawn-Kearney/578944498 Shawn Kearney

    I have seen fanboysim at it's worse with the GIMP community. I think that this "Gimp can do everything photoshop can" attitude - an blatantly false assertion - has actually stifled GIMP development and has taken it's priorities is strange directions. It's not that I think Photoshop is the bomb, or even particularly like Adobe for that matter, but GIMP does have a ways to go yet, and fanboy-motivated development hasn't helped any.

    • pharel

      So true and a great example!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Illian-Quinn/100000519222725 Illian Quinn

    Fanboyism in general is a very destructive force within many communities of all sorts. Both on and off the web, it has gone every where from killing the communities of highly prestigious games (that once contained millions of users...), to shooting goalies in football (as in soccer) games simply because he couldn't block a shot...

    I'm not the one for the task, but I'd show my support for some sort of Fanboyism Awareness Day that not only applies to Blender, but the entire Digital Arts Community.

    • YAY

      oooh I'm Fanboyism Awareness Day's biggest fan!!

      • Atlantisbase

        What if you're a fanboy of Fanboyism Awareness Day...
        Just sayin' :P

  • Ben_Lind

    What I find even more annoying than fanboyism are the people who complain about everything that's wrong and bad without contributing anything constructive or productive. People who try to "protect" Blender for being looked upon as a amateur software and complain about everything that is less than hollywood quality.
    For example if a tutorial is released by someone (Eg. recently by Alex Telford) it gets complaints about being too long and unprofessional. "I can't understand your accent, you talk too fast/slow, I already know that, how dare you teach me something I already know?, release the source files for free, give me candy, lick my boots..." etc.
    These users do a lot more harm than anyone imo. There's nothing constructive, just whining about people who actually try to do something to contribute. Who would want to make tutorials for douchebags like this? I surely wouldn't.

    • Gertjan vd Broek

      Those kinds of people are everywhere on the internet and I doubt you could get rid of them. But the reason this doesn''t hurt the blender community as much is because they do not idolize blender and don't shout at other communities for it.
      For what I've heard is that you just have to endure the inevitable bad comments to get to a few nuggets of well intended constructional feedback.

      • Ben_Lind

        Yeah I know but it seems these trolls have multiplied over the years.

    • Witold Jaworski

      No doubt that you should thank for a sharing of a free tutorial. However, when such a tutorial has flaws, you should point them. Otherwise its creator will not know, what can be done better. I wrote many free tutorials, and I am always glad obtaining user's critique :). Even when it is "impolite". It is much more important than the "awesome!" comments. For a written tutorial you can complain about unreadable graphical layout, For a videotutorial you can complain about the lecturer's voice. The speaking to the public is also an old and demanding art!

      • blahblah

        You are guilty of http://yourlogicalfallacyis.com/black-or-white.
        You are allowing extreme, dramatic, opinionated and presumptuous comments.

        This isn't just about blender, this about the community. Both tutorials, book, etc and user reviews/comments should be in check. We can't have blender slowing down just because the left-wing fanboys are allowed to do spout everything that they want.

        Alex Telford's tutorial is not a very bad one and you would still allow impolite comments? wtf?
        The point is, discussions should be objective.
        If comments are of low quality, same thing, it will just give other people the motivation to perpetuate meta-criticism of everything. If comments are reasonable, then we can stay on topic.

        The guy here http://www.blendernation.com/2012/08/09/ten-awesome-tips-for-blender/#comments wasted a lot of peoples' time.

      • Ben_Lind

        Ofcourse constructive critique is wanted but what annoys me, and I thought I worded it quite clear, is the people who have nothing constructive to say other than it's shit and it hurts Blender's image. If they truly were that worried they'd start thinking about how they act on a public communication platform like Blendernation.

  • http://www.blendernation.com Bart Veldhuizen

    I wonder: does running BlenderNation for more than 6 and a half years count as fanboyism? ;-)

    • Guest

      Nah, thats not fanboyism, because you never posted something impossible, everything was actually made in blender, so thats why its not fanboyism (as there is no exaggeration, but just the thruth about blenders awesomeness :))

      • troll

        What about the April Fools Jokes?

    • e5dy

      absolutely!
      really, to be honest, we love blender, sometime we have excess of optimism...
      it is not dirty! it's normal, don't worry

    • ok

      BlenderNation is the best news feed, cg resource that has ever existed in the whole wide world, universe and beyond times infinity plus plus plus.

    • http://twitter.com/jinchoung jin choung

      loving something is good and healthy. you can love something, warts and all. blendernation falls into that category.

      loving something unto blindness, where no existing wart can be acknowledged and is simply not seen - that is the corruption. that, i think is where the fanboy diagnosis shows up.

    • http://PolyKhromeGames.blogspot.com/ Brian Lockett

      Nah, it just makes you a good fan rather than a fanboy. ;)

    • Joeri Kassenaar

      " I wonder: does running BlenderNation for more than 6 and a half years count as fanboyism? ;-) "

      Yes.
      What I admire about BlenderNation is that is doesn't try to tell people how they should change themselfs into something that you find more suitable for your goals with blender. But it changes itself to match, and speak to, the users as they are, leaving them in their own value.

      • http://www.blendernation.com Bart Veldhuizen

        Thanks Joeri! Much appreciated.

  • unfanousfanb

    My proof of existance of these fanboys in the blender commnunity is that it is nearly impossible to find an honest Blender vs. Max/Maya, Cycles vs. V-Ray etc. comparison. A while ago I was seriously interested in what can be done with the other, way more expensive programs and I still haven't found an honest opinion of a blender user about these commercial programs.

    reading these fanboyish comments actually made me some kind of fanboy too^^

  • RNS

    There are time i just want leave the blender community move on to autodesk community instead.However working with blender and making some contribution is worth staying.

  • apostroph3dWip

    Blender Fanboyism, or stalking outcasts by the inquisitors of the holy worship Blenderiens.

    At the film released Sintel, a "Blender fanboyism" not accepting criticism behaved as
    a witch hunter (I'm not referring here to the "hair" as many have expressed).
    The worshiper angry, anxious to preserve the standard pure and glorious Blender had trolled a review
    I had posted some details about the design. The next day I realized that he had
    also posted his (troll) on my youtube channel.
    This was literally followed me like a predator, just for a critique.
    And if this guy had lived near my house, what would he more?
    - - -
    Fanboyism Blender, ou la traque des parias par les inquisiteurs du très saint culte des Blenderiens.

    A la sorti du film Sintel, un "Blender fanboyism" n'acceptant pas les critiques s'est comporté comme
    un chasseur de sorcière (je ne fais pas ici référence aux "cheveux" comme beaucoup l'ont exprimé).
    L'adorateur furieux, désireux de préservé l’étendard pur et glorieux de Blender avait trollé une critique
    que j'avais posté concernant quelques détails du design. Le lendemain je me suis aperçue qu'il avait
    également posté son (troll) sur ma chaine youtube.
    Ce type m'avait littéralement suivi comme un prédateur, simplement pour une critique.
    Et si ce type avait habité prés de chez moi, qu'aurait il fait de plus?

  • meltingman

    I am a blender fanboy
    And happy to be a good Fanboy, active member of Blenderclan.org (Fr community)

  • troll

    But... Blender is best!

  • e5dy

    I suggest the creation of the "Blender Fanboys Band"
    because:
    Blender make render more white than white
    Blender is without GMO
    Blender make you thinner
    Blender can make you wife happier

  • Mehmet PINARCI

    I AM READY TO GO TO MEXICO and LET A BLACK MAN CUT MY HEAD OF AND FREE KICK IT FROM ONE THOSE PYRAMID TOPs . HOW IN THE HEAVEN WE COULD DISTURB THE ALLLLLMIGHTY LORD OF THE LORDS J WILLIAMSON .

    From now on ...Eeevery boy and girl on this rock planet better do watch out what they say , write or EVEN FEEL .

    I again am ready to give my worthless soul for the all darn things I might have said or even felt . Jonathan Williamson that is my last statement .

    • http://twitter.com/CGVitamins CG Vitamins

      First of all you cannot logically attack Jonathan W for his opinion...chances are he has a lot more history with Blender than you do and has done far more to contribute to the growth of Blender as a whole. So much so that he was right there next to Ton at siggraph. Secondly, if a community can become aware of their "dark side" or how others see them, through communal influence and discourse can they try to minimize the fanboy factor. Not sure how you managed to turn that into some form of forced internet edict.

      • pharel

        I agree. Overall I see more support for what Jonathan has said than anything else which tells me there are many good people in our community who want a change for the better which tells me his opinion is shared by many of us.

  • MartianR

    I keep thinking this is the internet, so there is always going to be a huge variance in the way Blender is supported/not supported/evangelised/dissed, even understood. I'm not sure that can really be managed. Maybe Blender's real credibility rests with the quality of work that is being done and being seen. Against that, the fanboy thing is an issue, but perhaps not injurious to blender in the long run.

    • http://twitter.com/CGVitamins CG Vitamins

      After reading your comments, I am not sure you even know what you are saying half of the time. It comes across, initially as reactionary and with minimal thought, then followed by some for of play reasoning which may or may not make sense.

      I dont mean this to be offensive but you come across as young and headstrong, while at the same not really conveying that you are familiar with the subject matter.

      First of all you cannot logically attack Jonathan W for his opinion...chances are he has a lot more history with Blender than you do and has done far more to contribute to the growth of Blender as a whole. So much so that he was right there next to Ton at siggraph. Secondly, if a community can become aware of their "dark side" or how others see them, through communal influence and discourse can they try to minimize the fanboy factor. Not sure how you managed to turn that into some form of forced internet edict.

      Finally, consider this...you suggest that the quality of art is really all that matters in the long run. Well guess what? Some of the best artist which can maximize and show off Blenders true potential are not using blender right now...they are in other applications. So it comes back to fanboyism...if its keeping those people away, how are you going to start really, professionally, start showing off all that Blender is capable of? This is not to say no quality can come from Blenders current userbase...but rather a valuable resource is overlooking blender because of the impression some give. To legitimize Blender in the eyes of those who are multi-application and or professionals, the community has to feel like a place they can belong in rather than want to avoid.

      Also can you please contain your responses to one reply as opposed to many.

      • MartianR

        To my eyes, it seems like there are more users doing great work with Blender, the quality bar keeps rising and it is being noticed ... and it is quietly being legitimised as the years pass and the application develops. The fanboy thing is partly annoying, partly amusing, but I'm afraid I don't buy the idea that it is a significant issue, because the tool is always secondary to the work that comes out at the other end. There are lots of reasons why users stay with certain applications or are cautious about switching, but I suggest the fanboy issue is pretty low down on the list IMO

  • meltingman

    I personally do not understand this difference of language and word Blender Fanboy represents for me someone who loves this app .. not bringing critical of others ..
    I am a Blender Fanboy and I've helped many people to pass the course and try Blender. Not to stop Autodesk, but to stop the pirating software.
    Making tutorials but also helping beginners or not.
    I think's you make a amalgame with Fan and newbi..

    • http://twitter.com/CGVitamins CG Vitamins

      By suggesting you get people onto blender to prevent autodesk piracy....i just dont think you know what you are saying.

      The fallacy of that statement is that Autodesk products are FREE for non
      commercial use. There is no need to pirate what is freely given.

      A fanboy of any type is not a good thing. Its essentially admitting that you are letting your bias get in the way of reasoning. You can be a fan of something, but as long as you keep it objective and not have an emotional response for or against subjects for or against the said software, then you wont be considered a fanboy by any stretch of the word.

      • http://www.theemptyroom.co.uk/ Dewald

        Autodesk products aren't free for non commercial use. They do have trial versions which are free, but they only last a month.

        • http://twitter.com/CGVitamins CG Vitamins

          This is incorrect. You can obtain any autodesk product for free for non commercial use through the education community portal. Previously, autodesk charged for their learning edition software but this has changed for a few years now.

    • http://twitter.com/carter2422 Jonathan Williamson

      In my article I define fanboyism as:

      The collective outlook and behavior of a group of people concerning a subject (movies, games, hardware, comic book characters, etc.) which when challenged results in an antagonistic, passionate, and unreasoned response.

      This is based on the definition from Urban Dictionary: http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=fanboyism

  • http://twitter.com/jinchoung jin choung

    excellent point. i'm most familiar with lightwave fanboys but yeah, this particular "religious fervor", whether it is about an app or a company like apple is just complete nonsense.

    nothing in this world is perfect and everything can be better. a community does its "host app" absolutely no favors by cranking the immune response up to 11 when encountering criticism.

    actually, they have a clinical word for this as it applies to allergies and it's equally applicable to forums: anaphylaxis.

  • Toucan

    My experiences have shown the blender community to be almost completely composed of nice, reasonable people, and skimming down through the comments, it certainly seems that way, so I'm sure what I'm about to say has already been said. I'll say it anyway.

    I like Blender a lot. It's a great piece of software with an awesome community of people all focused on not only producing great work with the tools Blender gives them, but also continually improving those tools. It's a community that really gets excited about progress. Calling something perfect indicates that it cannot be made better. One of my favorite things about this community is how it is always working towards bettering itself and its software. If you deny that Blender can be made better, then you deny one of the, in my opinion, fundamental tenets of Blender– that things always can and will be improved.

    So stop denying that Blender has weaknesses. It does, and thanks to all the great developers out there, if you can acknowledge those weaknesses and talk about them, some skilled coder might take notice and fix them. Once a weakness has been fixed, Blender is that much better. To deny weaknesses harms not just the community, but the software itself too.

    Jonathan, you've written a really nice article on an important issue. Thanks.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jerjeles Michalis Gkiokas

    I think the fanboy-ism is a thing mammals have in general. Is not about Blender or Max or anything. Is just the whole concept of "belonging" somewhere (with its goods and bads)
    On the other hand i have to totally agree with Jonathan because (just an example) outsiders who will have a glance on Blender tutorials posted on public spaces (youtube) and then read the comments that are been transmitted by these "fanboys" might think Blender is an amateur program for brats and that's where the game is lost.

    Want to get rid of that attitude? (or at least minimize it to acceptable minimums) Its simple. Commercialize Blender! Yeah...make us buy the package for.. lets say 800bucks or more and also turn the forums and the like proprietary with a strict members management system.

    Effective against massive fanboy-ism ? Yes, we mammals sometimes appreciate something we pay for.
    Desirable and Creative? Hell NO!

    Concluding i would like also to comment that generally that fanboy-ism (spoiled attitude) is the side effect of Open Source software. Some people work their Lives developing something good,sacrificing time of their (most) precious time (like Prometheus gave the fire to humans) while others criticize and giving back bad vibes to the whole community (including developers of course)

    Sorry for the long post..

  • krusty42

    How to be a good member? Easy...just USE it, and any tool you need to get the job done. That's all!

    • MartianR

      Amen

  • RO

    Look at all the anti-fanboy material, the whole 80-or-so parts of it.
    I had a problem with OpenCL, did anyone help? Did anyone give any guidelines? Yes, they were: "blender cycles can render clay on GPU". When I elaborated on the issue did anyone respond? No and neither did they when I posted a thread on the matter - when it's not only my problem, even to clarify that "it just won't work". So what I am trying to say is that perhaps fanboys are not the only problem.

    • http://www.blendernation.com Bart Veldhuizen

      In general, I find that the Blender community is *very* helpful. But sometimes when questions get very technical or specific, it may be harder to reach the right people. I wouldn't draw your conclusion based on one observation.

  • Tim Edwards

    Mr. Williamson,
    I'm not sure what it is that bothers me about your article but there is something about it that is slightly offensive. It may have to do with the way you separate "professionals" like yourself and the rest of us. I think your core idea is not without merit or truth but your wording was unfortunate. I wonder where Blender would be now without the support and continued use by it's "fanboy" base over the years? Do you think that without that "blind support of it" that Blender would even still exist?
    Regardless, taking into consideration that you also make money selling Autodesk tutorials, will you be writing an article addressed to the users of Max/Maya warning them of the dangers of supporting an industrial monopoly?

    • http://twitter.com/carter2422 Jonathan Williamson

      Hey Tim,

      It was never my intention to offend, or demean anyone and so my apologies since it seems I have done that. When I say "professionals" I mean merely those people that are trying to make a living with Blender. Professional is not a status signifier or anything of the sort. Excluding the monetary aspect, I see no difference in the value or quality between professional and hobbyists. Most of us that use Blender professionally got here by first being a hobbyist.

      I don't personally do anything on the Max tutorial side of things and so I won't be writing anything, but if someone else wanted to they certainly could.

      Cheers,
      Jonathan

  • Pedro Sil

    I think this discussion, as many other discussions of this kind, is a bit pointless... From what I see, Blender enthusiasts use the software, live happy and do their learning. As for the professionals, they are the ones pushing the software further, incorporating new features, helping Blender become a better tool.
    In the end, those who really have some power to make things happen are on the "pro" side of the Blender community. The so-called "fanboys" don't really have enough influence to do any harm or good - but they will grow, mature and become a newer generation of Blender users. So, in my opinion, all members of this community must be respected. And for those annoying voices that send out unconstructive feedback, they'll fade away as their hormones settle!...

    And these discussions tend to give too much importance to a trivial phenomenon: when people get toghether and form a group, it's only a matter of time until the differences between them come to surface. As for the fanboys, they are not evil, they just need to look at things with more maturity.

  • fanboyism??

    I'm a little surprised that this seems to be a legitamite issue. Although I agree in principle with Johnathan,and majority of other comments here, I have to say I've yet to come across it . Surely most people know that although Blender is a great tool, it is not the only tool, and to use an analagy, an artist doesnt only use 1 particular brand of paint, to paint his masterpiece. If an artist does stick to one brand and one brand only, he may paint a beautiful picture, and paint it well, but the fact is his painting would not be nearly as good, than if he experimented with an array of brands, singling the best of each to compliment his workflow. I must click through the forums to try find an example to understand better. I may be wrong but to me, it kind of sounds like a young persons opinion that something is the be all and end all, and nothing else compares to it etc etc, I'm still fairly new to Blender (just over a year or so), and have nothing but good experiences on the forums, and blender related sites. I've always recieved answers to any queries i had, and assistance when necessary, and as I said I've yet to come across it. Was there a particular debate, or comment that inspired this comment that i could read, or if thats a little unfair to single a commenter out, could a link to a good example on another brands forum be given?.

    • http://twitter.com/carter2422 Jonathan Williamson

      There's not a particular comment that sparked this; more an accumulation of comments over the last few years that I've read and heard over and over again.

      If you want a good example of this negative light this kind of behavior can often cast check out the "Blender Trying Really Hard" thread on Polycount: http://www.polycount.com/forum/showthread.php?t=72805&highlight=blender&page=42

      The discussion starts on post 1036

  • pkisme

    well anything can have fanboys/fangirls...

  • Cal McGaugh

    "Fanboy" as in fanatic......yeah, I agree that it can have a negative though un-intended effect. I get enthusiastic
    about a lot of things, and sometimes I can see I've gone too far to the point of seeming not only zealous, but over-zealous, and people start to move away from me uneasily.

    As far as Blender goes, I think it's a wonderful toolkit, and am just amazed I'm actually bonding with it. Until I saw the Sintel video and the 2.5 gui makeover last year, I thought I was done with Blender, after a few failed attempts to get anywhere with it.

    "Blender?!?!? Never again!! Life is too short!!! I would rather have a spider lay her eggs in my ear!!!"

    Now I'm happy & enthusiastic, but haven't given up my other apps. I enjoy them all and use them all, though some more frequently than others......from Bryce, Carrara, and Hex, to C4D ZBrush, and VUE.

    As far as being a good member of the Blender community, I hope to be able to help other noobs get a leg up

    with Blender, and is why I set up http://www.blenderportal.com/

    Cheers,
    Cal

    ps- this is especially funny to me now that I'm a "Blender boy" :) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kR7UWImpG54

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