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#FurryAndProud is trending on Twitter as furries around the world share their art, fur suits, and pride and love for their community.
#FurryAndProud— emotionally unavailable. (@schwxn) November 22, 2019
There’s not a bunch I can say about the fandom just yet for only being in it for about 4-5 months now,but what I can say is that I am proud to be part of one of the the best,positive,and optimistic fandoms out there.🖤🤍 pic.twitter.com/FBBlqEOWpH
The tag has been around for years but seems to have been kicked into virality by a design team’s Kickstarter campaign for their line of LGBTQ+ furry-themed T-shirts.
And not everyone is happy about that, with Twitter user @xeebees railing against capitalism and astroturfing campaigns —a marketing technique that attempts to disguise advertising as a grass roots campaign the way that @artworktee has done here.
#FurryAndProud is trending thanks to a goddamn t-shirt company's astroturfing campaign jfc I hate capitalism— Xeebes (@xeebes) November 21, 2019
However, the tag has transcended its origins, with people focusing on celebrating the fandom and its people rather than the T-shirt line.
Joined in 2012, have never looked back :3— Silver Yote @MFF (@silveryote1) November 22, 2019
Got my partial in 2014, and my redesigned full in 2018 ^^
I have made so many friends and gone on so many adventures, and I cant wait to make more :3
Thank you, Silver. 🙂#FurryAndProud pic.twitter.com/DjhCCyeCXH
Even though the furry fandom has its flaws, I still love being a part of it and being able to express myself openly without fear. I'm #FurryAndProud and you can't change that! pic.twitter.com/s8jcuwRmWb— Joey Maxwell (@PlsPetBree) November 22, 2019
Some of the stories are really touching, such as this one from @dixielioness. The furry fandom helped her get through medical issues.
#FurryAndProud Due to my autism and being in special ed classes-I always thought everyone would disregard my creativity. Because of you guys, I screened a short film in Boston and published a book. A member of the fandom also inspired me to start working out and it's working!— Aaron B. (@aaron_equus21) November 22, 2019
#FurryandProud— a fluffy sin bunny (@DarkietehJester) November 21, 2019
Never thought I'd hitch onto a trend like such. But this community has helped me just live and been an important influence on my life, fuck it. I guess I am just that =v=;
#FurryAndProud being a furry has helped me so much. ive met my best friends on here.— Farion! (@Funnymanhaha1) November 22, 2019
lookin at you guys!
The fandom has helped me beat back depression, my anxiety, my self hatred and helped me accept who I am by accepting who I am. I learned to love myself and take care of myself now. I love being a part of these degens. Haters stay mad. #FurryAndProud— Jaco | Birthday Cat (@JacobyWestbrook) November 22, 2019
There is still some nastiness aimed at the fandom, as furries are an easy and popular target.
the amount of people tweeting hateful shit towards the Furry community on the #FurryAndProud hashtag is actually disgusting.— GUN Orifan1 (@orifanace1) November 21, 2019
#FurryAndProud DISCUSTANG why this furry shit trending— GredTheGod (@GredTheGod) November 21, 2019
#FurryAndProud no. Go back in your hole— Harmabe (@WumboReturns) November 21, 2019
Even non-furries are feeling the love, cheered on by all the positivity in the tag.
#FurryandProud bro hell yeah yall get so much shit yall dont deserve that its harmless live your lives— hime ♡ hime (@kimoiweeb) November 21, 2019
I'm not a furry, but I'm so fascinated with that community, and the costumes I've seen are bananas. So to all my furry brothers and sisters out there, be #FurryAndProud ✌️— Daniel Hennessy (@DK_Hennessy) November 21, 2019
And some are stepping in to defend their fur-suited brethren. People being kind to each other online, you love to see it.
Y'all seem super pissy about the furries over in the #FurryAndProud tag for people that say you're "ToTaLlY nOt A fUrRy GuYs!!!1111!". Let the people do their thing in peace or admit you're envious they have the money to spend on fursuits n cons. No shame in admitting it.— Tessa Valentine (@AllOfMyLoveTess) November 21, 2019
Hey, instead of insulting people for being into anthropomorphic characters that y'all literally grew up with in the form of countless cartoons, why not let them be #FurryAndProud and move on with your life?— CrazySean 🏳️🌈🌊 (@crazyseandx) November 21, 2019
I love how people expressing disgust towards the #FurryAndProud hashtag is only gonna make the furry community come out with more force of positivity than ever.— ––– (@CyaNYDE290) November 21, 2019
Of course, there was also the only kind of thread jacking that’s always welcome: people started posting photos of their pets.
Siobhan Ball is a historian, archivist, and journalist. She also writes for Autostraddle and bi.org