Florence Fans are Free
“Florence and the Machine Fan Club” members have a vigor that surpasses all other community members. Fans passionately feed off each other’s energy by making comments that are vulnerable and real. From the most popular post to the least viewed one, authentic interaction between members is guaranteed. Members talk about listening to Florence’s music through depression and suicidal thoughts and during the best moments of their life. The members of the community are so dedicated to this website because the community is a judgement free zone, the community is small, the poster makes sure the content is about Florence, and the poster gives members freedom to interact.
Because members know that when they make a comment they will be accepted by other members, they stay committed to the community for a long time. If members judged the commenter, the commenter may stay in the community for a short amount of time to try to prove herself but would most likely not stay in the community. Members take a long time to appreciate being accepted into a community, but once they do, they truly appreciate it. This is kind of like how a teenager does not appreciate her parents love until she becomes independent and spends time away from them. A person who joins a community with judgmental members tends to stay for a short period of time until they have gotten their full dose of acceptance. They then find out they are not happy and leave. This is not the case for the Florence community. Florence is the one who models this acceptance in the first place which causes fans to follow. Writer for the New York Times, Melena Ryzik, observes, “In the hotel lounge, she spilled her secrets in a voice loud enough to demonstrate she didn’t care who else heard; she has the surprisingly rare ability as an artist, to translate how her emotions and music intersect.”
Small numbers lead to big success
Because there is a small number of people in the community, members develop deeper relationships with fellow members. When there are less members, each member can really relate to each other which motivates the members to stay in the group. Few groups exist and offer this.
Strictly Florence Related
The poster keeps content related to Florence. This contrasts with other communities where posts cover a wide range of topics. Members of the Florence community feel secure in knowing that the content will always be on topic and they will not have to sift through many posts to find Florence. Because the poster has taken the step to be strict about what is posted, members want to stay in the reliable community. Members stay for shorter periods of time in large, unorganized communities because they do not like the extra posts.
Members get up to date information about Florence. Members see what Florence topics are trending by seeing what content the poster is posting and which posts are popular. Specifically, commenters reveal the most information because they talk about which songs are their favorite, what concerts they attended, and any new Florence information. When the poster asked what the Ceremonials album meant to fans, Zena Jacobsen responded, “One of the best albums often played at almost full volume in my car. […] I have and always will enjoy this album along with lungs.” A member who sees Zena’s comment now knows which album is popular because of her comment and the multiple fans who agreed. The ellipse was added here because Gretchen McCulloch, author of Because Internet informs, “This too has logic to it: while some kinds of punctuation are traditionally reserved for joining full clauses (periods) and others for dependent clauses (commas), ellipses and dashes are deemed acceptable for joining both sorts, even in the most conservative styles” (pg.112). The quote includes two sentences found some distance apart which can only be logically separated by an ellipse. Members are also getting a space to express their love for Florence and relate to other members on this topic. Members are able to conversate with a wide range of fans on a number of topics related to Florence. This is something that cannot be found elsewhere.
Feedback from the Fans
Individual members keep the community alive by commenting on and liking posts. The poster learns from the members which posts are more popular and then uses this information to post more of the popular posts. For example, members engage more in posts that are related to Florence’s transformation in music which causes the poster to make more posts about this. This keeps members interested which inspires other members to join.
Looks bring likes
The poster also makes sure that the posts are pleasing to the eye which keeps members engaged. The poster will never post something that is low quality or fuzzy. Most human beings are attracted to communities that are pleasing to the eye. The poster uploads posts showing Florence in magazine shoots most frequently. These posts also tend to get the most likes. However, comments tend to be shorter on these posts. For example, Samantha Sibary, on a high-quality picture of Florence cheers, “Gorgeous the way the sun shines off your hair.”
As Florence fans across the world connect on a deeper level, there is one thing they show for themselves that cannot be found in many places: an acceptance and love that surpasses normal standards. No matter what the background of the fan is, the fan is certain to arrive at this community where they can fully be themselves. A community like this can influence members to do the same in their everyday lives which can change the world.
Ryzik, Melena. “‘I Never Thought I Would Talk About It.’ So Florence Welch Put It in a Song.” The New York Times. The New York Times, June 14, 2018.
McCulloch, Gretchen. Because Internet. New York , NY: Penguin USA, 2020.