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How to Be a Good Fan

Hint: Don't be like the dude Stan in the song "Stan."
October 9, 2014, 1:30pm

“It’s cool to be player, but it sucks to be the fan/ When all you need is bucks to be the man, plus a luxury sedan.” Eminem said that in 1999. 1999 is also the year that Eminem recorded "Stan," a song about an obsessed fan who writes a series of letters to Eminem that become incrementally more alarming until he ends up killing himself and his pregnant girlfriend when he thinks Eminem is never going to acknowledge he exists.

Clearly, it sucked ass to be a fan in 1999. There was no way to instantly send a tweet to your favorite artist; you had to write a letter. There were no $500 VIP meet and greet packages for tours; to meet an artist, you had to wait outside the concert in the blistering cold for four hours and the artist still may just say no. It was difficult to link up with other super-fans from around the world; you had to subscribe to a fanzine or some weird pre-internet bullshit. You only heard from your favorite artists once every few years when they would put an album out. You had to suffer though things like TRL and late night shows in real time to see interviews with the artists you liked, or—gasp!—actually purchase a magazine. To hear new songs, you had to wait until radio decided to spin them or until MTV decided to show the video, or else run the risk of having to talk to some insufferable record store clerk to find out what good music had come out lately.

All of this delayed gratification led to fans taking some insane measures just to be noticed. It also may have led to people enjoying and cherishing live concerts and recorded music more, but that is subjective. All I know is in 1999 no one was staring at their Motorola StarTAC during the slow songs at the show (though in retrospect this would have been such a hard-ass move), which meant they were enjoying it more.

In 2014, Stan probably would troll Eminem so hard on Twitter that he would gain a moderate amount of internet infamy for himself. Knowing that attention is the ultimate goal of trolls and stalkers alike, this infamy may very well save Stan’s fictional life. Maybe other fans would connect with Stan online and help talk him off the edge. Maybe Stan would be a moderator on ShadyTalk.com (which is what I imagine the Eminem message board is called). Buzzfeeld would have screen-shotted one of his tweets for their “37 Wackiest Tweets to Celebrities” list. He may have even fucked around and started writing for Noisey (wait, am I Stan?). Either way, here are some tips on how to be a good fan so you don’t end up pulling a Stan and going from zero to murder-suicide real quick.

Do

This is the closest you can come to finding a picture of Eminem smiling on the internet.

Be nice and respectful—“Hey artist, thanks for making great music! If you have a second, could I take a selfie with you for my social media! If you’re too busy, no worries. I understand you are a person as well, and respect your boundaries.”

Buy tickets to the show—“Here is legal American tender in the amount of one ticket to the show please!”

Repost links and music the artist asks you to share—“Click here to check out this great link by this artist I enjoy!”

Buy merch at the show / tip the merch guy—“One merch please!”

Rep your set—“I am wearing the t-shirt of [ARTIST] because I respect their brand and want, in my own way, to be a small part of it!”

Tell a friend—“Hey Drew, check out artist!”

Don’t

Slim Shady, judging your wack fandom.

Kill yourself—Everyone knows that killing yourself is an excellent way to go viral. However, how are you going to see all the retweets if you’re dead. Sorry, but there is no twitter in Hell.

Kill your family—There is also no twitter in jail. Actually maybe there is I need to make a call real quick.

Kill yourself AND your family—Okay wow now you’re just being a try-hard.

Ask for too much without giving back—Everyone needs money, even your favorite artist. Feel free to send me some for writing this dope article.

Start following an artist’s family members on social media (unless they ask you to)—You should not be concerned with what Justin Bieber’s mom is doing. Call your own mom.

Kill the artist—How are they supposed to follow you back if they are dead?

Robesman's tea's gone cold he's wondering why / he wrote this article at all. Please tweet at Robesman.