2.3 Fandom Activities

Given the diversity of the furry community, it is unsurprising that there are disagreements about what furries actually do. Based on the suggestions from furries gathered at conventions and fur meets, a list of 14 different furry-related activities was created. We asked participants to identify, on a 7-point scale, the extent to which they believed that each item was a significant part of what furries do (1 = completely disagree to 7 = completely agree). As the figure below illustrates, there are several activities which are nearly-universal aspects of the fandom (e.g., “Art,” “Community,” “Acceptance”).1
Contrary to popular stereotypes about the furry fandom, “Drama” and “Sex” were not considered focal or important activities in the furry fandom.

Importance of activities within the furry fandom

Given that the furry fandom encompasses a wide range of activities, including many different subgroups and related fandoms, we decided to ask participants to indicate whether or not they identified with any of a number of other groups commonly affiliated with the furry fandom.2

Furry Group Identification

 

Anthrocon 2018Anthrocon 2017Summer 2020 Survey
Group Prevalence
Gamer 64%
Anime Fan  48%
Sci-Fi Fan  43%
Artist 38%
Writer 25%
Musician 18%
Brony 16%
Greymuzzle 11%
Therian 7%
Popufur 6%
Military Fur 6%
Cub/Babyfur 6%
Otherkin 5%
Category Prevalence
Gamer 60.5%
Fursuit Owner3 45.1%
Anime Fan 44.5%
Artist4 39.9%
Sci-Fi Fan 36.9%
Writer5 25.8%
Musician 17.2%
Brony 15.8%
Greymuzzle6 8.6%
Therian7 6.2%
Military Fur 6.0%
Cub / Babyfur 5.9%
Otherkin 5.4%
Popufur 4.8%
Lycanthrope 4.1%
Category Prevalence
Gamers 42.5%
Fursuiters 35.2
Artists8 34.7%
Anime Fans 31.8%
Roleplayers 28.3%
Writers9 21.7%
Musician 16.9%
Greymuzzles10 14.1%
Fursuit Builders 10.2%
Fursuit Builders 10.2%
Therians11 7.5%
Youtube Creators 7.3%
Otherkin 5.5%
Military Furs 3.3%
Popufurs 2.2%
Lycanthrope 1.8%

In line with other findings 12 , some of the most prominent interests associated with furries were an interest in anime and science fiction. Most furries also indicated that they were self-identified gamers. A great many furries self-identify as writers and musicians, a finding consistent with our past research on this topic. Surprisingly, nearly half of all participants indicated that they owned a fursuit, a number far higher than that typically found in previous surveys. One possibility is that convention-going furries may have the financial resources to afford a fursuit in a way that online furries cannot. Alternatively, it may also be the case that those with fursuits are particularly drawn to conventions, where they will have the opportunity to display their suits to other furries and to the public, especially at Anthrocon, a convention renowned for its public fursuit parade. A 2020 survey 13 continues to show a higher prevalence of fursuiting and fursuit construction. In this same survey we began including “YouTube Creator” as an interest in our survey, given the growing prominence that YouTube has been playing in the furry fandom.

In past studies, we looked into the label of “popufur” to try and better understand the traits associated with furries who self-identify as popufur (e.g., finding that they were significantly more likely to be bullied by other furries). In the present study, we found that those identifying as popufur scored significantly higher on a measure of narcissism than those who did not call themselves popufur (3.29 / 7.00 vs. 2.33 / 7.00). Fursuiters were also more than twice as likely as non-fursuiters (7% vs. 3%) to self-identify as popufur, a difference that was statistically significantly.14

References

  1. International Furry Survey: Summer 2011
  2. Anthrocon 2017 Study, Anthrocon 2018 Study
  3. See 2.8 Fursuits
  4. See 6.1 Artists and Writers: Prevalence
  5. See 6.1 Artists and Writers: Prevalence
  6. See 1.1 Age
  7. See 7.1 Therians: Prevalence
  8. See 6.1 Artists and Writers: Prevalence
  9. See 6.1 Artists and Writers: Prevalence
  10. See 1.1 Age
  11. See 7.1 Therians: Prevalence
  12. See 2.6 Related Fandom Interests
  13. Summer 2020 Survey
  14. Anthrocon 2017 Study

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