As its name would imply, a Facebook profile picture is a picture of the person’s face. But there are many who choose to not follow suit, and instead might have a picture of a horse, maybe a beach-side landscape shot, or maybe a still of Tohru Honda from Fruits Basket.
“We’re still people,” Facebook user Chuck Wagner tells us. “It’s not like I’m anime-kin or anything. But I still feel like I’m being constantly judged, oppressed, and not appreciated for simply having a picture of someone I adore and relate to. I can’t comment on a friends’ status without having some meathead tell me to ‘change my 2007 weeaboo ways’ or ‘nice tits naruto.'”
Clearly the struggle is very real. Abused Anime Facebook Users is a Facebook group founded by Wagner that fights for the equality and fair treatment for themselves. Wagner’s coalition aims to fight the stereotypes of the Madoka and Sailor Scout Facebook users, and end this trend of cyber bullying.
“I don’t like to show my own face, even in public, but that doesn’t mean I don’t want to socialize. I wish people would see past the anime eyes in my Facebook profile picture, and see the anime eyes in my heart.”
Wagner pleaded to us not to bother even looking at his Facebook as he prefers to use other media outlets like Gaia Online or tumblr. Both usernames were on the business card he gave us, but we made the journalistic decision to throw it out as it was very greasy and poorly designed. He also let us know that it was his only copy, but he was excited to finally use it.
The photo of Wagner we received from him is reportedly the only photo of him to ever exist. His parents claim they just couldn’t convince him to take any photos, even at an early age.
“Sure, they’re stretched jpegs of girls I know will never exist, but I don’t need people to know what I look like and I don’t need photos to express who I am. When you see me, I would hope that you see the Sailor Jupiter or Orihime in me before you saw my slightly-bearded physical face.”
Wagner kindly asked that the one photo we did find and used would be censored, and to possibly replace it with a more suited photo of any anime girl he would approve of. Since he was very strict as to who, we decided to just black out his face.
The next time you see a slightly-bearded non-socialite, look for the deeper person inside, and maybe ask for their Blogspot before asking for their Facebook.