We’ve just had the latest Apple announcement and as always there has been a mixed reaction. It’s basically come down to those who buy Apple products thinking they’re the most amazing thing ever (fanboy much?) and those who don’t.
Whether one group is more right than the other is irrelevant for today. Instead I want to look at some telltale clues if you or a loved one in your life is a fanboy or fangirl.
This is a safe place, we’re not here to judge…
10 Signs You’re a Fanboy or Fangirl
1. You have clothes or accessories with the company’s logo.
If you have clothing with an Apple logo, Android robot, Nintendo symbol or similar, then you’re probably on the path to “fanboyism.” The clothing is more than just something to do with it’s function. It’s a sign of your tribe, your line in the sand.
Confession time: I have a few Apple related shirts…they are connected to podcasts…but yeah…it’s not a good sign.
2. You know all the ins and outs.
As a fanboy, you know all the details about your choice (and a lot about the other choice too). If you are really dedicated, you might even be able to recite tech spec, chapter and verse like the Bible (or better?). You use these facts to argue your case and dismiss those of others. You also know which stats to avoid talking about if they don’t paint your side well.
3. You feel emotional about your choice.
If you have strong emotions connected to your choice, it might be time to find a support group. This could be warm fuzzy feelings about your phone or console, or smug feelings about someone else’s choice. Then there is the anger when someone doesn’t understand you.
4. You feel everyone else should choose the same.
Prime fanboy territory here. This is the absolute belief that anyone different from you is wrong and should change their mind. Linux is the future, iOS is better than Android, iPhones are overpriced, PS4 all the way, and so on (PC Nation?). There’s no shades of grey here. You’re either with us or…else.
5. You are never critical of the company you support.
Self criticism is good and healthy. Imagine a company that never reflected on what it did wrong, or a person who could never admit their faults and ask for forgiveness. And yet, when it comes to fanboys, their team never does any wrong. That’s not a simple case of looking at the bigger picture, it’s plain down right refusing to accept any faults.
6. You can’t even listen to the other side.
If someone makes an argument against your “side” and your fall back response is “what? I can’t even…” or “Not even worth it” (and yet you then attack that side from a different point), it’s a pretty good sign you’ve entered into the Group Think stage. Dismissing someone else’s argument without even responding is sometimes a sign that your brain hasn’t got a good response, so it just won’t bother responding…but your brain needs to feel it’s on the winning side, so it decides that the other person wouldn’t understand you or your argument.
You might even try to remove all sources of information that conflict with that view point from your life. ?
7. You know all the other sides arguments.
Linked with that last point, fanboys always know the other sides arguments…even if they don’t actually know the other side’s arguments. They believe they are being objective, even when they are not, and it allows them to stop listening to the other person when they talk.
Besides, Apple Water makes better Kool-Aid.
8. You think everyone else is a fanboy.
Fanboys know that the other side are fanboys, but they are not. They are just a group of people who happen to like this product because it is superior. They aren’t the cult like group, they’ve seen through that marketing hype and they have chosen the “better choice” (and now they need to go out and preach the good news to all their friends, convincing them to join
The Dark Side their side…nope, that’s not being a fanboy at all).
Fanboy/Fangirl Tip: Calling other people fanboys is a great way to deride and dismiss the opposition without listening to them. It’s also a way to stand on a moral pedestal and look down on those who
are not as smart as you haven’t realised the truth yet.
9. You attack the other fanboys.
Fanboys love to pick a fight. If you are a fanboy, then you may just make little jokes (but seriously, you mean them) at the other side. Not even the product, but the people. When you’ve stopped talking about the items in question and you get personal, how can that be anything other than fanboyism?
10. You care about winning more than working out the answer.
This is one of the clearest sides. If someone tries to “win” an argument (sometimes via whatever means they can) then there’s a good sign they are a fanboy. If you really aren’t a fanboy, then it should be okay whatever the answer turns out to be. You can explain your point of view (maybe not eloquently) and listen to someone else explain their. Maybe you’ll end at the same conclusion, maybe you’ll think about what you discussed some more, or maybe you still have the same opinion. Whatever the outcome it’s okay…right?
Having said all this, I think there is a place for a type of fanboyism. After all, it’s impossible and not worthwhile trying to track the ever changing landscape of fanboy divides and choose your side.
Let’s take phones for instant. We’ve just had the Apple announcement (did you watch it like this?) and we’ve had most other phone announcements for the year…but at the start of next year we’ll have more. And what about the app stores? They’ll continue to put out new apps, some on one platform, and some on another.
It’s simply not worth the effort (or financial cost) trying to always be on the objectively right side. That’s why it is okay to choose and option and stick with it. Even if it isn’t the best option now…you know…like what I use.