By some bizarre fluke I have managed to squeeze through the second round of the AniBlog tournament with a win despite my expectations otherwise. Much respect to hontou ni for a close-run tussle, there were times when there were less then five votes between us which made for some frantic checking. I am up against Ogiue Maniax in the next round which is a daunting prospect but I wish him all the best for the next round, hopefully it will be a interesting match up. Musing on the tournament though has brought to the fore a lot of ideas that stem from it - primarily why participants are voting and commenting like they are.
Many people who watch anime, one can imagine, do only that - whether that's on TV (either American, Japanese, European, Malaysian or any other location) or anything they find to download or stream, it's probably fair to say that the majority don't interact or otherwise think about anime beyond that. Apart from them however there is a gumbo of different ways of passing information around about anime whether that's forums, instant messaging, Twitter, blogs, IRC, conventions, podcasts, conversations, university clubs or myriad other possibilities. The problem those mediums and the nature of fan communities suffer from though is that they naturally foster insularity. It is, as a fan, very easy to become entirely engrossed in a select few avenues of communication to the knowing or indirect exclusion of others. But being aware of those other groups and paying them respect is something I feel a lot of anime fans don't do and the AniBlog tournament has, among many other things, exposed.