A comment on comic-con here, wherein the author states:
"Most painful irony: By winning, nerd culture has lost. When I was a kid the fact that comics and games and fantasy and whatever were awesome was a secret, and people gave me a hard time about it. Now suddenly everyone's all, hey, no, this stuff is great, Iron Man, woo! Which means instead of being our little secret, now it's all about big corporations selling nerd culture to as many Joe Douchebags as it can pack into the multiplex. And where am I in that transaction? I don't want to be anywhere near it."
It's good that the author loves his tribe. But it's not like Fandom ever really lacked for rude people.
And it's pretty funny that a guy who makes his living writing about nerd culture in Time Magazine is ragging on Joe Douchebag. You got to get PAID! There is no Iron Man without Joe Douchebag. Joe Douchebag gave Hollywood a crack at filming Watchmen, the end result of which I appreciated. Most times I've sat down to play an RPG, Joe Douchebag is at the table. He's often a fun guy to game with. I'm pretty sure I saw Joe Douchebag at the Johnathan Coulton concert I went to in Ann Arbor a couple of months ago, along with reps from every other Geek Tribe. By winning, nerd culture has just, well, fucking WON.
In Zombies of the Gene Pool, Sharon McCrumb wrote this about fan culture's attitudes towards the rest of the world:
"She knew that she could think and feel, that she was more alive somehow than most of the bubblebrains in her dorm. So that was it. They weren't real. She didn't exactly believe that they were robots, or hallucinations, but on some deeper spiritual level she felt that she possessed something that they lacked. In medieval times, she might have termed it a soul."
The last time I was around a bunch of down and dirty geeks, they were Nice. They shared their fandoms with me, and suggested good stuff to look at and read. They didn't even mention that my last name is Douchebag. They were the greatest.
Pulp fiction, the family of genres that cover superheros and SF and fantasy and horror, is good because it is beautiful and creative. It is a cauldron of modern artistic hybrid vigor. It crosses cultures and introduces people to new ideas. Pulp Won, not Nerd Culture, because it is just great. Sharing grows the pool of "hopelessly sexy fangirls swanning around getting their cosplay on." Sharing birthed the steam punk aesthetic. Sharing nerd culture just makes for more lovely and wonderful, win-win for everybody.