Video about Making Friends With Fans

Here is a ten minute talk I recorded for New Music Strategies’ AmpNMS ‘online music knowledge event’ about Making Friends With Fans:

Making Friends with Fans from Nancy Baym on Vimeo.

It was followed by Steve Lawson, Stephen Mason and Kira Small discussing issues it raised alongside a chat channel with many others chiming in, all of which will be archived and up on the NMS site before too long.


Fans or Friends? An interview

I recently did an interview with Dave Cool for Bandzoogle’s blog.

We covered topics like how social media have affected online fandom, benefits and challenges of social media, whether bands need to use social media and/or have their own website, whether they can keep mystique, whether they ought to be trying to be friends with fans, and even a bit on how I mix personal and professional in my online identity and why.

Read part 1 and part 2.

Fans or Friends?

Last weekend I gave a talk at the International Communication Association about the increasingly interpersonal nature of the relationships between musicians and friends. In it, I draw on the interviews I’ve done with musicians to identify some of the positive new rewards they get when they can interact directly with their fans, cover many of the tricky interpersonal issues they face in trying to negotiate how much those relationships can be like friendship, and briefly summarize the main strategies they use to manage boundaries in ways with which they are comfortable.

Here it is in PDF form for download:

Fans or Friends?

Any and all feedback (especially the constructive kind) is welcomed!


Beautiful and Strange

The last thing I would seem to need is another blog given that I don’t keep this one up, but I made one anyway.

I am calling my ongoing project about musician-audience relationships Beautiful and Strange, following a quote from one of my interviewees about his connections and contacts with his audience. The Beautiful and Strange blog is where I am collecting the relevant bits I run across online.

My thinking is that the more extended reflections about the project will show up here on Online Fandom while the straight links will show up there. Probably not a best practice – my husband jokingly asked if I was “diluting my brand” and I may well be – but I wanted all my links in one spot where others could share them too and that’s what I’ve done. So there.

Also, excerpts of the interviews are getting published on MIDEM’s blog. Up there now are conversations with Richie Hawtin, Sydney Wayser, Stephen Mason, Kristin Hersh, Mark Kelly, and Steve Lawson. There will be more. I’ve talked to about 30 people and every conversation is great. I am still conducting interviews.

Engaging Fans Through Social Media

Last week I gave a talk at by:Larm, Norway’s premiere music industry conference and festival. I was invited by GramArt, a nonprofit that works to help musicians, to talk about musicians and social media. If you click here you can download a PDF of the slides and notes from my talk.

In it I identify several of the concerns and issues I’ve been hearing as I interview musicians about audience interaction, argue that it can be easier to handle many of these issues if you understand fan culture, and offer some specific bits of advice that I hope can help musicians and those who work with them navigate these new and still-challenging waters.

The presentation is cc licensed, please pass it around and share it if you like.

Thanks to the many people whose cc licensed flickr shots I used, to GramArt for inviting me, to the many musicians who generously spent time talking with me, to everyone who’s helped me connect with musicians to interview (I’m still at it – let me know if you’ve got good contacts!), to the many people who came to hear me at by:Larm and whose questions helped me better understand musicians’ concerns, and to Microsoft Research New England for the intellectual home and financial support they provided as I launched this project.