The Business of Fanatics

Fans are not only passionate about what, or who they follow, but they are an enormous part of our economy. They are a crucial, if not the only, driving force behind entities in the entertainment and sports industries. This is why anyone looking to build a fan base, or wanting to learn more about fan culture, should check out Fan Academy, an online course brought to you by Click HERE for info on the Beta test.


Photo of Stephanie Picher with Singer Lady Gaga. Rest in Peace.

Photo of Stephanie Picher with Singer Lady Gaga. Rest in Peace.

UPDATE:  As soon as my tribute video to her went live, which grew to 1k views in less than 24 hours, I was contacted to be interviewed for a local newspaper article honoring her memory HERE  and she was paid tribute to on Lady Gaga’s social media network for fans at Thank you to all, for helping preserve the memory of this special fan!

ARTICLE – There are certain events in life that are not expected. There are certain people you know who you view as invincible. Well, hearing the news that my friend Stephanie Picher passed away yesterday was not expected. Seeing the inconsiderate photo from an online newspaper of her silver car crushed like tin foil under a truck trailer proved to me, despite her struggles with addiction she overcame, that no one is invincible.  Stephanie was a huge Lady Gaga fan and a walking example of the virtues she wishes all her fans upheld. She was kind, she promoted peace, she encouraged understanding, and she was an amazing example of the LGBT community.

I will miss her showing me how to stud clothing. I will miss our chats at Panera about “The Walking Dead” and why Gaga’s “Jewels N Drugs” was a weird choice. In general, I will miss being able to text her to see if she could hang out, as she lived a half hour away from me. Sometimes, she was distant, but we all go through personal struggles or crazy work loads in life, so I didn’t take it personal. Anyone who knew her can attest to the fact that if you had her attention as a friend, you had her 100% and it’s very sad to lose her. I compiled a lot of the footage of her I was lucky enough to shoot (as well as an interest piece from when she won a Gaga GMA pass) and made it into a short film entitled “Steph” HERE. You can also see her in a promotional video from Best Buy for a “Born this Way” album release party HERE and an autobiographical video she did on herself HERE. Rest in Peace.

The BlackSparrow Flies Again!

Want a chance to own a piece of pop culture history? Head over to The Hollywood Show at The Westin LAX in Los Angeles on Saturday April 12th at 11 a.m. for an amazing event hosted in part by BlackSparrow Auctions, where you can bid on some iconic costumes. More info HERE.

Some items available from BlackSparrow Auctions at the Hollywood Show on April 12th

Some items available from BlackSparrow Auctions at the Hollywood Show on April 12th

BlackSparrow is also involved in the Cancer Gets Lost auction that will look to take place in September. If you are a fan of the show “Lost”, click HERE to see some of the items that will be on display for the next few months starting April 13th and then will be up for grabs.

It’s Going Down-ey

A sampling of Jasmine's photos showing her passions for film & Robert Downey Jr.

A sampling of Jasmine’s photos showing her passions for film & Robert Downey Jr.

My friend Jasmine once had someone in an advisory position playfully say to her “you can’t put ‘fan girl’ on your resume”, as best I can paraphrase from hearing the story first hand. Though it is true that you probably can’t make a career out of being a fan, although I’m sure it can be done, Jasmine has geared her passion for pop culture towards her future.

Wanting to get into the medium, whether as an actress or behind the scenes, Jasmine has many influences she has mentally indexed while doing a film internship in Los Angeles. Above all, her biggest role model in the business is Robert Downey Jr., who she has been trying to meet or get some sort of contact from for years. Continue reading

Fans in the News: First Week of April 2014

Red Sox fans get married at Fenway Park

Red Sox fans get married at Fenway Park

It’s no April Fools Joke – fans have been busy already, this first week of April! An adorable five year old in California was handsomely rewarded by Microsoft for helping his father point out a major security error in the XBox One. Remember the big story where actress Emma Stone fangirled over Spice Girls? Well, on Jimmy Kimmel Live, she proved her devotion with a definitely unique talent.

In Sports, Derek Jeter of the Yankees was trying to get a game keepsake to a young fan, but some fellow fans sitting nearby prove ignorance, and selfishness, must be bliss. In happier Baseball news, the fans pictured (Shannon and Cody Anderson) got married at Fenway Park, as a symbol of their devotion to the Red Sox and how their fandom for the team is what brought them together. Check out their live tweets from their happy day and wish them “congrats”!

Walker Stalkers & Andrew Lincoln



I want to take a moment to gush about these two guys named Eric and James. They run a podcast called The Walker Stalkers that I’ve been following pretty much since their humble beginnings. Their podcast is themed towards all things “The Walking Dead” and has grown into a movement that includes fan-centered conventions all over the United States, and even going international soon!

Aside from all the amazing things they do, these guys personally did something very nice for yours truly. I was one of their first batch of supporters before their conventions were thrown into the public eye for the amazing guests they were able to pull, so they chose a question I had for “Walking Dead” star Andrew Lincoln, who plays the main protagonist Rick Grimes, for me to ask him on air. I was hilariously surprised when it happened, but being caught off guard was my own fault because I neglected to check my email before it happened (oops). Check below the page break for a partial transcript of our interaction, or check out the audio video I made from my part, complete with my fan-girling HERE. Note- It could be a little spoiler-y, if you have not seen Season Three yet:

Continue reading

Fans in the News, Last Week of March 2014

SWSX victim gets hospital visit from favorite band . Photo from Mashable.

SWSX victim gets hospital visit from favorite band . Photo from Mashable.

Lots of stuff going on with fans in the news from this and the previous week. To start with the “OW MY FEELS” category, Taylor Swift visited young cancer fighters in a NY hospital this week. This is not her first time giving back to her fans in medical treatment, as you’ll read HERE. While we’re talking about it, a young lady who was one of the victims in the SXSW car crash that injured and killed multiple pedestrians, got a hospital visit from her favorite band when they heard about what happened.

In miscellaneous news: Emma Stone fan-girls over The Spice Girls, a 9 year old boy went viral after his school banned his My Little Pony backpack, and one fan just can’t let go of the game ball until she gets a selfie.