|See also:||anti-shipper, ship war, shipper|
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An anti-anti is a person who opposes the anti-shipper movement. The term pro-shipper is also used, interchangeably. This term may have arose on Tumblr and/or DreamWidth circa 2015-2016," with people making blogs to track, expose, or otherwise comment on the behavior and beliefs of anti-shippers. Pro-shipper beliefs are in direct opposition of antishippers. Many pro-shippers aren't simply pro-ship, but are also anti-antishipper, which is where the phrase anti-anti derives from.
One of the earliest uses of "anti-anti" comes from a 2015 Dreamwidth fail_fandomanon post, calling them "anti-anti-shippers. The post also shows that the term "anti-shipper" was being used at that time as well. By 2016, anti-anti-shipper had been shortened to anti-anti, possibly due to Tumblr blogs using "anti-anti" in their usernames, which was considerably shorter than anti-anti-shipper. According to anons on fail_fandomanon from 2016, the anti-anti and anti-shipper movements were gaining noticeable traction on Tumblr. The discussion and use of anti-shipper and anti-anti on Dreamwidth may have also helped spread the usage of these terms to those who may not have heard it otherwise. At this time, the term pro-shipper didn't seem to be used, at least in these discussions.
By 2017, pro-shipper was a term being used on Tumblr, as evident in surveys using the term. The prevalence of pro-shipper, as well as the larger spread of anti-anti and anti-shipper, may be in part due to an immense ship war on Tumblr during 2017. During 2017 the Voltron: Legendary Defender fandom was in the midst of a ship war that was heavy on pros-shipper and anti-shipper terms and ideologies (see Voltron Controveries and Discourse Demographics Survey (Voltron)). 2017 was also the year that the Undertale needle hoax was started (see Hoaxes about Anti-Shipper Violence), which was not only spread through places like Tumblr and Twitter, but Reddit as well. The Voltron fandom itself also had a similar hoax, but the exact year that the hoax was started is unclear as information about it is more sparse than Undertale's anti-shipper hoax. However, due to the ship war that had been going on in 2017 Voltron fandom, it's not unfounded that the hoax may have started between 2017-2018, when the fandom discourse was at its peak.
A 2017 Voltron survey called the Discourse Demographics Survey (Voltron) gathered a total of 1,998 responses as of Mar 2021. It surveyed anti-shippers, pro-shippers, and neutrals, in regards to both Voltron specific shipping and anti/pro ideologies as a whole. Some respondents in the survey blamed a ship war within the Voltron fandom for the resulting amount of anti/pro discourse among the fans.
In 2018, who-gives-a-ship conducted a Pro Shipping/Anti Anti Survey. fiction-is-not-reality analysed the results of the survey. The results showed those who call themselves "anti-anti" and those who call themselves "pro-shipper" have a bit of a variance in views and attitudes, suggesting these are not 100% synonymous terms. In 2019, fiction-is-not-reality commented that "Last year's attempt at defining pro-shippers as different from anti-antis unfortunately failed completely because only a bunch of us were actively trying to point out the differences. They're both self-applied label that have less to do with definition and intention and more to do with what the single person likes to think themselves as."
There is also a 2020 survey called the Anti vs Pro-Ship Meta Survey by Tumblr user asterosian, another survey hoping to gather the thoughts and opinions of both anti-shippers and pro-shippers. This survey is ongoing as of Oct 2020 and as yet to show its results.
Opinions and Comments
While pro-shippers may still hold their own variable beliefs, the general concept of a pro-shipper is that they believe "fiction is not reality" and often see every ship as valid, regardless of the opinions others may have towards the ship. For some pro-shippers, this includes incest, non-con, underage, and other forms of relationships that are called unhealthy or problematic. However, anti-antis rarely comment on content such as slavefics or Nazi AUs, so this area of opinion is lacking, though such content may fall under the umbrella of belief that all fiction is acceptable regardless of content. Outside of this, pro-shippers may simply support a ship that receives a lot of hate from its fandom (and this may even be its original meaning), even if it isn't inherently considered problematic by others.
An example of a pro-shipper blog is Tumblr user Who-gives-a-ship who has a long list of beliefs that they hold as a pro-shipper, with the two most in line with pro-shipping being "all ships are good ships" and "fiction and reality have a complicated relationship."
Among pro-shippers, the use of slang from the dystopian novel 1984 is sometimes used synonymously with anti-shippers, and a basic understanding of these terms may be needed to fully grasp some pro-shippers opinions. This includes the phrase "thought crime" and "groupthink." In its original context, "thought crime" means simply thinking of an idea is a punishable crime. Then, "groupthink" can mean something similar to designating someone a "follower;" that someone is being pressured into believing something based on the beliefs of a group, or may even secretly have a different opinion but are staying quiet about it.
Outside of 1984 vernacular, some pro-shippers may also describe anti-shippers as being black-and-white thinkers, pro-censorship, or even authoritarian. Despite this, anti-antis rarely comment on the content that is already "policed" or "censored" on social media, such as graphic gore, violence, and hate speech on Twitter. From an even more extreme view on anti-shippers, freedom-of-fanfic compares anti-shippers to American protestant Christians, misogynists, TERFs, and says that they use alt-right (a term often seen as an alternative word for nazis) strategies to "win" online controversies.
In their lists of opinions, bios, and other discussions on anti-shippers, pro-shippers have argued that anti-shippers are for the harassment and doxxing of those who hold ships they dislike (such as pedophilic and incestuous ships). For example, when a fan of HLVRAI named Metrix-86 was discovered to have a secret Twitter where he drew shota and non-con of the characters, he ended up with two written callout posts and a video essay on YouTube outing his actions. As a result, his art on Tumblr (and likely his ask box) received negative attention. Then, another example is SethPup, a popular furry who also had a secret Twitter, where he drew his fursona having sex with real puppies. He also had a callout post. While an anti-shipper would likely see merit in outing the actions of these artists (and may see the negative attention as deserved), a pro-shipper would see them as defendable and sympathetic, with the act of making callout posts deplorable.
While anti-shippers may see themselves as being helpful by making others aware of those who are problematic, a pro-shipper may argue that harassing those with problematic ships doesn't actually make less problematic ships or shippers. By this argument, while some people may become more aware of an artist's actions (by way of callout posts), in the end the result is simply someone being harassed with no further positive benefit. They may also argue that the fear of harassment can scare artists into not enjoying the themes they actually like, such as "darker themes" or "edgy" themes, which could possibly be related to cringe culture.
Though there are a number of popular anti-anti blogs who speak out against harassment for any reason, there are also anti-anti blogs that are, ironically, run only as receipt blogs and callout post blogs for anti-shippers. For example, one anti-shipper named bendyhatespaedos made it their goal to dox pedophiles on Tumblr. At a time, this included doxxing minors as young as 12 for shipping children together, which bendyhatespaedos did not deny. Bendy's argument was that "pedophilia is pedophilia no matter how you stylize it," though they stated they no longer doxxed children. Anti-antis responded by harassing and making fun of bendyhatespaedos, told them to delete their blog, and said that they should utilize the authorities rather than take matters into their own hands.
Another example is of a 2020 occurrence between a 26 year old pro-shipper named MariAkutsu and a 13 year old anti-shipper named Kalmintz on Twitter. Mari had uploaded a NSFW fanfic of the children's cartoon Glitch Techs, and only indicated that it was a smutfic with the tag lemons, a phrase not many younger fandom members may know the meaning of. Kal ended up opening the fanfic and realizing it was NSFW too late. Being a minor and uncomfortable with an untagged smutfic that featured aged-up children close to her own age, she spoke out against it. The author, Mari, would then go on to make a 500 page long callout post for the 13 year old. This may be one of the largest pro-shipping vs. anti-shipping issues to occur within the Glitch Tech fandom, and a good example of how even pro-shippers are not except from the behavior they usually abhor in anti-shippers.
Based on some of the back-and-forth from the "Anti Asshole Anti Archive" on Tumblr (since deleted), some members of both ideologies have been considered in poor taste and guilty of behavior considered to be harassment, despite both movements attempting to appear more "morally correct" than the other. For example, bendyhatespaedos was considered an "asshole anti" for doxxing a 12 year old. However, further up in the Asshole Anti Archive, the OP acknowledges that an anti-anti had begun posting explicit gore, maggots, and disturbing images on anti-shipper posts.
Below are more comments and opinions by those who identify as an anti-anti/pro-shipper.
freedom-of-fanfic is an anti-harassment, anti-censorship blog focused on fandom spaces. It is focused on criticizing and deconstructing the current trend of using moral valuation as an excuse for intimidating fandom contributors into censoring themselves or leaving fandom.
The major points that come up over and over:
95% of the posts on this blog are long-winded text walls.
- everything is permissible in fiction, whether it’s in ‘good taste’ or not
- it is the responsibility of creators to tag and flag their content appropriately. it is the responsibility of consumers to blacklist and avoid content/content creators that will bother them or are not age-appropriate for them. (Caveat: current social media makes this difficult.)
- nuance is important. there’s a balance between activism, awareness, and indulgence.
- word definitions matter.
- anti spaces (anti-shipper, anti-kink, anti-dark content) tend towards authoritarian thought patterns. they encourage black and white thinking, groupthink, isolation from all other points of view, and harassment of outsiders.
- anti spaces tend toward exclusionist thought patterns. They encourage policing of others, identity/experience erasure, and gatekeeping content/resources.
- harassment, death threats/suicide baiting, doxxing, assault, and slander/libel, whether directed at fanwork creators or people dedicated to tearing down fanwork creators, are never okay.
- everyone is a fully formed human being with good sides and bad sides, and there is always value in considering another’s point of view, even if you reject their conclusions as harmful and false. (this blog spends a lot of time analyzing the conscious motivations and internal logic of antis.)
it’s not endorsement, it’s not promotion, it’s not normalization, it’s not reflective of real life desires, and it never justifies harassment. harassing real people isn’t media criticismThe Bio from Shipping-Isn't-Morality
Other than simply being pro ship, I am anti-radfem, sex positive, pro-sex worker, and pro-kink (being a dom myself). I am very much against anyone who thinks they should control and police anyone's sexuality, especially women's.The Carrd of Antis-Delete-Your-Blogs-Pls
I primarily ship to cope, but I obviously support any and all shippers.I am left-Libertarian politically, aka solidly on the green square of the political compass. I'm against REGs, bigots, and authoritarians in general, which, coupled with my major, is why I got into discourse in the first place.
It’s so sad to see how many people are scared in fandom spaces.
Scared to be open about what they like. I have spoken to so many people that enjoy darker topics and themes in art and fanfiction but they could never support/produce anything like that publicly because they are scared of the fandom’s reaction. And I also think that there are people out there that think that they are wrong for liking darker content.
Please just know that we’re here. There’s actually a lot of people enjoying darker content that is deemed as problematique.You are not alone, you’re not wrong for liking what you like, and I’ll keep saying this over and over again until people don’t have to feel afraid anymore.
idk who needs to hear this right now but fictional characters are playthings and you can do whatever you want with them
Example Anti-anti and Pro-shipper blogs
- pro-fiction-konata, formerly fujoshi-and-fudanshi-support
Meta by Anti-Antis
- Anti vs Pro-Ship Meta Survey (Asterosian's Anti VS Pro-ship meta survey)
- early? example in Teen Wolf fandom: post by knottingwolves, with addition by plushstiel - outrage against moral policing of incest ships, with bonus argument that Sterek is worse because fandom doesn't acknowledge that it is problematic (March 2014)
- antishipping as the cool new trend, or: why are most antis under 25 years old?, by freedom-of-fanfic, a prominent and vocal pro-shipper (June 2017)
- There are a lot more anti-anti-shipper blogs now. fail_fandomanon, Nov 5, 2015 (Accessed 7/25/2021)
- "Anonymous asked: what does anti anti mean?". May 25, 2019. Retrieved May 31, 2019.
- Do you not go to tumblr, nonny? fail_fandomanon, March 15, 2016 (Accessed 7/25/2021)
- fiction-is-not-reality (June 27, 2018). "175312545655". Retrieved May 8, 2019.
- What is Groupthink, Very Well Mind. Oct 2, 2020. (Accessed 10/4/2020)
- why are antis so misogynistic and ageist? Tumblr, Nov 30, 2018 (Accessed 10/6/2020)
- theassholeantiarchive, Tumblr. (Accessed 10/6/2020)
- This Grown Adult Made A 500 Page Callout On A 13-Year-Old, YouTube. Dec 30, 2020 (Accessed 6/2/2021)
- About page for freedom-of-fanfic. Accessed on July 15, 2018.
- Antis-Delete-Your-Blogs-Pls, Carrd. (Accessed 10/4/2020)
- It's So Sad to See How Many People are Scared in... Tired-and-Salty, Tumblr. Mar 24, 2020. (Accessed 10/5/2020)
- idk who needs to hear this right now but... Jacobbyships, Tumblr. Nov 8, 2019. (Accessed 10/5/2020)
- "theassholeantiarchive".. Archive link 1, archive link 2
- Tumblr promo post, Archived version