Given that upward of one-quarter of the furry fandom may self-identify as a brony,1 and given that furries, themselves, experience a significant amount of stigma from the general population,2 it’s worth asking whether bronies and furries hold negative attitudes toward one another, or whether they get along due to a shared experience of stigma from popular culture (bronies are often mocked for their tendency to eschew traditional gender norms and their interest in a show targeted toward a younger audience).
This first figure presents the results of one study where furries and bronies were asked to rate how positively or negatively they felt about bronies, as a group.3 They were asked to provide this rating on a scale of 0 (extremely negative) to 100 (extremely positive). The data show that while bronies (unsurprisingly) felt positively about bronies, furries had mixed feelings:
They were asked to provide this rating on a scale of 0 (extremely negative) to 100 (extremely positive). The data show that while bronies (unsurprisingly) felt positively about bronies, furries had mixed feelings: 17% rated bronies extremely negatively, 23% felt very ambivalent, and 7% felt extremely positively. While the average rating was “50” for the furry participants, this was the product of very polarized views, not of overall ambivalence of the fandom toward bronies.
In another study4 we asked furries and bronies to rate their attitudes toward furries, bronies, and non-furries (i.e., the average person). This would allow us to test whether the negativity furries indicated toward bronies was directed at bronies in particular or toward any non-furry group specifically. The data show that furries and bronies did not significantly differ with regard to their ratings of furries and non-furries. Replicating the above finding, furries rated bronies significantly more negatively than bronies did. Most relevant, however, was the fact that furries also rated bronies significantly more negatively than they did the average non-furry, suggesting that their negative attitudes were specific to the brony fandom, and not just to anyone who was not a furry.