With the influx of interactions happening on social media platforms, there is bound to be the formation of communities. A general term for one of the communities you can find on social media are ‘stans.’ This term was coined by Eminem in 2000 to be the combination of the word’s ‘stalker’ and ‘fan’. With language always changing, especially slang, the term stans is now more loosely used.
For any content creator or celebrity, you will find a group of stans in their community. Stans are not inherently bad but there is definitely a toxic side to them.
The term stans now is used to describe fans that consume all of the content creators’ content, though some stans can still be described by the original usage of the term.
Doxing and pressuring content creators are an apparent part of the toxic side of the stan community. If a content creator says something some fans may not agree with, some of those fans might go on a hunt to go after those creators. If another content creator says something bad about someone who is a toxic stan to that content creator, then those stans will send an influx of hate to that creator.
Due to the toxic side of this community, many content creators have spoken out against stan culture as a whole. They are referring to a stan relationship with a content creator to be a para-social relationship. Content creators who have spoken out about that kind of relationship between stans and content creators are youtubers, Jschlatt and Ludwig.
Though not all stans are bad and participate in the toxic side of the community. Youtuber Dreamwastaken is known to stand up for that side of stans on his twitter accounts, saying the community allows fans of his content to interact with other fans that like that same content.
Both stands on the topic are valid and content creators can express their feelings on this topic and any discomfort they may have about it.
With any community as big as the stan community there is bound to be a good part and a toxic part, and it is up to the content creators to express their boundaries and feelings on the topic.