Short answer: Because parts of the fandom have disintegrated into petty, useless ship wars that overshadow everything smart and beautiful everyone else manages to create — including the show itself.
Long answer: First, a very large disclaimer. The entire fandom isn’t awful. There are people that I hold near and dear who manage to make beautiful, thoughtful, amazing and fantastic contributions to Person of Interest despite everything that goes on around them. (I humbly point to magicb0x, eyesofwitt, livenudebigfoot, 1cooper, nathaningrams, among many others.)
Look, anon, one thing you and everyone else that reads this has to understand is that I’ve seen this proverbial cruise liner sink all the way down as far as Tumblr is concerned.
I was, I guess, an “early adopter” of this show on Tumblr, along with others (including sameenshaw who has been sitting next to me the entire time) who tried to pump up publicity for our favorite show. This doesn’t make me special — it just means I’ve unfortunately had a front-row seat in watching the Person of Interest fandom devolve into something befitting bigger, more insane fandoms I won’t name.
In the beginning, this fandom was small but we did what made us happy — people made great theory posts, gif posts, fanart, photosets, social media movements and chats — and of course some people didn’t get along, but that happens to everyone.
I actually don’t know if there was a point where it all started going downhill. I think it was a subtle change due to the sheer amount of people entering the fandom: Season 2 saw at least double or triple the people active in the fandom on Tumblr. That’s completely unscientific, but that’s what it felt like.
So maybe it wasn’t a specific fight or a specific topic, but more a case of more people armed and ready to fight. Instead of arguments being between two people, the number rose to five. Then ten. Then twenty.
Check the tag. Check it right now. Right now, at 7:57 PM CST on 2/26, I only have to scroll through ten posts to see half a dozen people screaming at each other.
And you know what? It’s not the fights that have devolved our fandom into something I’m borderline ashamed to be in. Good-natured debates over theories, characters — hell, even ships — are important for any fandom. But these aren’t good-natured and they’re sure as hell not useful for anyone.
The reason I get so angry, so upset, so completely irritated on a daily basis about this fog that has permeated the fandom is because it’s a waste.
You have been given a gift. You have been given a show that is miles and above 95% of the rest of television. It’s intelligent, humorous, relevant and important. Person of Interest could give even the smartest of people dozens of hours of meta, theorizing, inspiration or sheer frustration to deal with.
You know what most people have spent their time screaming about?
Who is or has or will be fucking who.
Who is invading the other ship’s ‘space’.
Who insulted who this week.
Who is in the right in this specific minute in this specific sector of the fucking internet.
It’s not even about a specific ship anymore — it’s a virtual dick-measuring fight over who is better, who is superior, who WINS. And it’s every single week, if not every day. It’s not even specific people, because most of us have been involved in at least one if not twelve petty fights over something in this fandom, myself definitely, absolutely included.
But I knew when to quit. I knew when to stop giving a shit. I knew the unfortunate point when I had to stop checking the main tag just to preserve my sanity. I don’t even go near people I didn’t follow specifically for the great, relevant things they post to this fandom after an episode — it’s too hard to watch.
Our fandom is like the Titanic. Some of us are already in the water and some people, like me, are still hanging on the side watching her go over because we can’t let go. If you’re reading this, you’re thinking of someone who is the iceberg. You have one specific fight or post or incident in your mind that sunk the respect you had for the Person of Interest fandom, even if that incident included yourself.
If you’re somehow wildly offended by this post — I’m 100% sure you’re part of the iceberg.
It’s not that I don’t like the Person of Interest fandom, anon. I like some people more than anyone else I know. It’s just that I don’t like what it’s become.