My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic fandom
My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic is an animated television series produced by Hasbro as part of the My Little Pony toy franchise, which is tied in with the 2010 relaunch of dolls and play sets and original programming for U.S. cable channel Discovery Family (formerly Hub Network). Lauren Faust was selected as the creative developer and executive producer for the show based on her previous animation experience with shows like The Powerpuff Girls and Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends. Under Hasbro's guidance Faust developed the show to appeal to the target demographic of young girls, but created characters and settings that challenged formerly stereotypical norms of "girly" images and added adventure and humorous elements in order to keep parents interested.
The series received widespread praise from both television critics and parental groups. It also found an unlikely audience in a large group of adult internet users in late 2010 and early 2011, forming a subculture. These fans, mostly male, were drawn to the show's characters, stories, animation style and influence of the show's propagation as an Internet meme. The fandom adopted the name brony (plural bronies), a portmanteau of "bro" and "pony". Though initially considered to propagate the humorous and ironic concept of people enjoying a show for young girls, the fandom has shown deeper appreciation for the show far beyond this concept and is considered part of a New Sincerity trend. Its technology-savvy members have created numerous works in writing, music, art and video based on the show, have established websites and fan conventions for the show and have participated in charitable events around the show and those that create it.
The appreciation of the show by an older audience came as a surprise to Hasbro, Faust and others involved with its development, but they have embraced the older fans while staying focused on the show's intended audience. Such reciprocity has included participation in fan conventions by the show's voice actors and producers, recognition of the brony fandom in official promotional material, and incorporating background characters popularized by the fans (such as the fandom-named "Derpy Hooves") into in-jokes within the show. As a result of these efforts in part, My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic has become a major commercial success with the series becoming the highest-rated original production in Hub Network's broadcast history.
One of the first critical reviews of Friendship Is Magic, which was published shortly after the initial broadcast in October 2010, was written by Amid Amidi of the animation website Cartoon Brew who wrote that the show was a sign of "the end of the creator-driven era in TV animation". Amidi's essay expressed concern that assigning a talent like Faust to a toy-centric show was part of a trend towards a focus on profitable genres of animation such as toy tie-ins to deal with a fragmented viewing audience and overall "an admission of defeat for the entire movement, a white flag-waving moment for the TV animation industry." The article said this concern was over the fact that more and more shows seem to be driven by company executives who want to sell their products, rather than creators. Though the show had been discussed on 4chan's 'comics and cartoon' board ('/co/') before the essay's publication, the alarmist nature of the essay led to more interest in the show, resulting in a positive response for the series for its plot, characters, and animation style. This reaction soon spread to the other boards of 4chan, where elements of the show quickly inspired recurring jokes and memes on the site. Some of these included adopting phrases from the show like "anypony", "everypony" and "nopony", instead of "anybody", "everybody" and "nobody", or jokingly stating that they watch the show for the "plot", a reference to the ponies' flanks.
The number of Friendship Is Magic posts drew attention on the site. Fans of the show defended it against various trolling attacks from other 4chan boards, leading to a temporary ban on the discussion of anything related to ponies. Christopher Poole, the founder of 4chan, briefly acknowledged the popularity of the show on the site at the 2011 South by Southwest festival. Poole has since created a dedicated board for discussion of the show and its fandom. Though the discussion of the show continued at 4chan, fans created other venues to discuss it, and the fandom spread to other Internet forums.
The adult interest in the show is comparable to that of The Magic Roundabout, Tiny Toon Adventures, Rocko's Modern Life, Animaniacs, Dexter's Laboratory, The Powerpuff Girls, SpongeBob SquarePants, Yo Gabba Gabba! and Phineas and Ferb: Older audiences appreciate jokes aimed at adult viewers and a sense of nostalgia for older cartoons and animated films. Many of the aforementioned shows had attracted college-aged fans who, when Friendship Is Magic was airing, would be raising children of their own. The show references works that older viewers would recognize, such as I Love Lucy, The Benny Hill Show, X-Men, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Diamond Dogs, The Big Lebowski, The Avengers, Star Wars and Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. Most of these fans are surprised by their fondness for the show. Shaun Scotellaro, operator of Equestria Daily, one of the main fan websites for the show, said, "Honestly, if someone were to have told me I'd be writing a pony blog seven months ago, I would have called them insane." He commented that the spread among adults was accelerated by its presence in online gaming. Mike Fahey, an editor for the gaming website Kotaku, noted that the fandom was "building friendships among a diverse group of people that otherwise might have just sat on either side of the Internet, flinging insults at each other". Dr. Patrick Edwards, who performed several "Brony Studies" to survey and analyze the fandom, observed that the brony fandom is unlike most other fandoms which "aren't welcoming to people who are different", and promote the show's message of love and tolerance. Further interest came from the furry community, which includes a large number of animation fans. One contributor to "The Brony Study" (below), Dr. Marsha Redden said that the adult fans are "a reaction to the US having been engrossed in terrorism for past ten years" in a manner similar to the Cold War, and are "tired of being afraid, tired of angst and animosity"; the show and its fandom are outlets from those strifes. She compared the brony fandom to that of the bohemian and beatniks after World War II and of the hippies after the Vietnam War. In a similar vein, Amy Keating Rogers, one of the show's writers, believes that the fans have come to like Friendship Is Magic due to "so much cynicism and negativity out there in so many [other] shows" while the show "has such a positive message" that counters this.
As with most fandoms, the popularity of Friendship Is Magic significantly waned in the years with events in 2018 showing apparent decline in its popularity. Unconfirmed leaks of information from Hasbro stated that the show's ninth season, which is scheduled to air in 2019, would be the last for the "G4" (Generation 4) ponies with a move towards a fifth generation ("G5") that appeared to be more appealing to younger girls much like the original toy line. Equestria Daily saw significant drop-off in readership in the preceding years with most readers primarily discussing new episodes rather than other fan content. The fandom's largest convention BronyCon, had seen its peak attendee numbers drop from 10,000 to under 6,000 in 2018 and decided that it would be appropriate to end the convention after a four-day event in 2019. Despite this, it is currently unexpected that the fandom will die out but will instead remain steady in the future. Nonetheless, it is still unlikely to have the same impact as it did from 2011-2015.
Older fans of the show use the word brony, a portmanteau of the words "bro" and "pony". Though this generally refers to male fans, the term is often applied to fans of either gender. Another term, "Pegasister", has been used to refer to older female fans of the show. Two informal surveys of 2,300 and 9,000 participants respectively revealed that the average age of adult fans is around 21, that approximately 86% were male, and that 63% were currently pursuing a college degree or higher qualification. A subsequent 2013 survey with over 21,000 respondents showed similar numbers, and highlighted that the majority of fans were in the 15–30 age range, with the average age between 19 and 20, and over 65% were heterosexual. Further, using the Jungian personality test, the survey revealed that the largest fraction of respondents (approximately 27%) fell into the "INTJ" classification, which normally only occurs in 1–3% of the population, according to the surveyors. Many in the fandom who had difficulty in meeting others or being treated fairly by others found the fandom as a way to meet people with similar interests and become more social. Hub Network's CEO and President Margaret Loesch, who was the executive producer of the 1980s and 1990s animated My Little Pony television shows, noted that there were male fans of those past shows, but there are considerably more for Friendship Is Magic due to the quality of the show and the influence of social media and the Internet.
Some bronies are enlisted personnel in various United States Armed Forces, who have included the various "cutie marks" symbols from the show as insignia on their uniforms or equipment, despite not being appropriate practice for most branches, or worn only during training operations. Margaret Loesch, the CEO and President of The Hub, noted from an email from a group of United States enlisted personnel in Afghanistan explained how they came by the show by way of their daughters, but found the emphasis on teamwork and covering each other's backs resonated with their military fellowship. A fan-conducted "herd census" suggests that, as of September 2012[update], there are between 7 and 12.4 million people in the United States that would identify themselves as bronies.
A more detailed study, "The Brony Study", is currently being conducted by Dr. Patrick Edwards, a psychology professor at Wofford College with his neuropsychologist associate Dr. Redden. The two had initially compiled one of the aforementioned informal surveys and Edwards has presented the results at the ongoing brony conventions. Edwards noted that the brony culture provided "the opportunity to study a fan phenomenon from its inception", and planned to continue the survey to watch the evolution of the culture. Professor emeritus Bill Ellis of Penn State University has compared the brony culture to that of otaku, fans of Japanese anime. Ellis, speaking at the 2012 AnimeNEXT convention, considered that both bronies and otaku fans are "psychologically and developmentally normal" and are simply "non-majoritarian" in their choice of active interests. Ellis noted that fans of both groups often are ridiculed for their interest in media targeted for the opposite gender.
Though the initial growth of the fandom may have come from 4chan participants enjoying the ironic nature of grown men enjoying a show for girls, the fandom continues to grow based on sincere appreciation of the work. Robert Thompson, a professor of media studies at Syracuse University, stated that "It's one thing for guys to like motorcycles and muscle cars and soccer. For a guy to like My Little Pony, it's so out there that it becomes almost avant garde. It has a hip quality to it." According to Angela Watchcutter of Wired, the fandom is an example of internet neo-sincerity, where these older viewers watch the show "un-ironically" and "without guilt" breaking gender stereotypes, furthermore creating new material around it. Prof. Roberta Pearson of the University of Nottingham in film and television studies stated that "This is a level of fan devotion I've not seen before," while Prof. Charles Soukup of the University of Northern Colorado in communication studies suggested that this effort is an indication of the "ultra-cult era" that bronies exhibit, where "media consumers discover extremely unexpected and obscure media texts to cultivate uniqueness and distinctiveness for their mediated identities".
Websites such as Equestria Daily and Ponychan were created for fans to share artwork, stories, music, and news about the show. Founded in January 2011, Equestria Daily had over 36 million pageviews in its first 9 months, and has since surpassed 500 million views (June 2014). The blog, which receives more than 175,000 visits a day and is fully funded by advertising revenue, was established by 23-year-old college student Shaun Scotellaro for the purpose of collecting fan fiction and news specific to Friendship Is Magic. Shaun eventually cut back on his community college classes in order to continue running the site out of his parents' house in Glendale, Arizona, when it grew in popularity. He believed the show needed a unified fan base at the time, as there existed an overarching concern that Hasbro would not be authorizing a second season. In September 2017, selected archives of Equestria Daily were included in the Library of Congress's "Web Cultures Web Archive Collection" by the American Folklife Center; the collection was established to "documenting the creation and sharing of emergent cultural traditions on the web".
Fans commonly organize local meet-ups and conventions in their local areas. One of the first published conventions was BronyCon, which was first held in New York City with the show's supervising director as a guest. The first BronyCon attracted 100 people, but the third, held in January 2012, was attended by 800, and the fourth expanded to a two-day event in June 2012 at the Meadowlands Exposition Center in New Jersey, with more than 4,000 attending, with developer Lauren Faust and voice actors John de Lancie, Tara Strong, Andrea Libman, Peter New, Lee Tockar, Amy Keating Rogers, Cathy Weseluck and Meghan McCarthy as special guests. Tara Strong even attended the convention Canterlot Gardens in a full Twilight Sparkle cosplay to surprise fans. Subsequent BronyCon events moved to a larger space provided by the Baltimore Convention Center, with more than 8,000 attending. Other brony conventions include Everfree Northwest in Seattle, Washington, Midwestria in Chicago, Illinois, Canterlot Gardens in Cleveland, Ohio, Equestria LA in Los Angeles, BABSCon in Burlingame, California, Ponycon NY in the metropolitan New York City region, BronyCAN in British Columbia, Canada, GalaCon in Ludwigsburg, Germany, BUCK in Manchester, United Kingdom, PonyCon AU in Sydney, Australia, Crystal Mountain Pony Con in Salt Lake City, Utah  and Pacific PonyCon in San Diego, California. Nearly a dozen brony conventions were planned in 2012. In addition, established My Little Pony conventions prior to the Friendship Is Magic show, such as the "My Little Pony Fair" or "UK PonyCon", have seen increases in their numbers due to the attendance of bronies. A long-running annual art show, the "My Little Pony Project", where artists re-imagine My Little Pony figurines and toys into works of art, has also seen additional attendance and contributions from the brony community.
Charity and fundraisingEdit
The fandom is considered to be charitable, raising money for a number of different efforts. The Brony Thank You Fund was originally established to create a fan-funded advertisement to air on Hub Network as a thank you to the show's creators in November 2012. The charitable drive far exceeded its goal, with additional funds used to give money to provide toys for children through Toys For Tots. The fund has since incorporated in the state of New Hampshire, and successfully registered as a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization under United States law. They claim to be the first such media-related fandom to achieve this status. In December 2013, the Fund donated $50,000 to endow an animation scholarship in perpetuity at the California Institute of the Arts. Similarly, a group called "Bronies for Good" ran blood drives and raised over $60,000 during 2012 for charities like the Children's Cancer Association, Room to Read, CureSearch, and Your Siblings. Voice actress Tara Strong has gained help from the fandom for her "Kiki's Cancer Fund" to help the daughter of a close friend who had been diagnosed with a brain tumor, and has stated that the child "wouldn't be alive today without the My Little Pony fans"; raising $100,000 to help  however, the girl subsequently died of her illness. Faust enlisted help from the bronies to raise money for the Wildlife Learning Center in California, with the Center offering to name some of its animals after characters in the show when certain donation levels were raised.
In January 2014, 11-year-old Michael Morones became hospitalized after attempting suicide from being bullied by others at his school for being a fan of the show; the brony community subsequently reached out to the family and with several of the show's production and voice actors, started a charity drive to help pay for his medical bills and starting a non-profit organization to help combat bullying; the efforts raised over $48,000 within a week and more than $72,000 a month later. Many of these donations were raised by Tony Wayne and other tattoo artists across the country, with the funds going to Michael's family and anti-bullying charities. Thousands of men and women received pony tattoos to both support Michael and show their support for anti-bullying.
The documentary film, Bronies: The Extremely Unexpected Adult Fans of My Little Pony, was funded several times over its requested Kickstarter amount, allowing the filmmakers to expand the scope of the project. An organized group of fans, calling themselves the "Humble Brony Bundle", accepted donations from its members towards the Humble Indie Bundle, a charitable independent video game sales drive for Child's Play and the American Red Cross, which topped the contribution list for one sale and contributed the largest single donation for a later sale after a friendly competition with Minecraft developer Markus Persson. In the next major bundle, the same friendly rivalry topped the donation charts; the Humble Brony Bundle donated over US$13,000 and exceeded Persson's and the rest of the leaderboard's donation.
Arts and entertainmentEdit
Many artists use sites such as DeviantArt to display fan art based on existing and fan-created characters; more than 500,000 pieces of Friendship Is Magic artwork were present on DeviantArt by June 2012. Adult fans have also created a number of plush toys and other figures based on the show's and fandom-created characters, which they sell on eBay and other auction sites to other fans, sometimes for over 100 US dollars.
Videos that incorporate footage from the show, including music videos, parodies and remakes of movie and video game trailers, are posted regularly on YouTube. One early video that caught media attention was made by high school student Stephen Thomas, using science to dissect some of the physical impossibilities on My Little Pony as part of a class presentation; it was later featured on the Tosh.0 website. Remixed versions of professional works using Friendship Is Magic footage have been noticed by their creators; filmmaker Edgar Wright noted My Little Pony versions of the trailers for his films Scott Pilgrim vs. the World and Hot Fuzz. Top Gear's UK blog team and the UK edition of the Top Gear magazine noted a video using clips of their show featuring pony characters. A fan-made Friendship Is Magic version of South Korean rapper Psy's "Gangnam Style" music video incorporating an "invisible horse dance" has been highlighted by media outlets as one of the top takes on the video. One fan, Zachary Rich, created a full-length Flash-based fan episode, "Double Rainboom", as part of his college coursework at the Savannah College of Art and Design. Pony-based videos of "Weird Al" Yankovic's songs that Yankovic had highlighted in his Twitter feed led to discussions between the musician and the show directors, and eventually a guest appearance in the show in the fourth season episode "Pinkie Pride".
The fan community has produced numerous fan fiction works, one of the longest being "Fallout: Equestria" written by "Kkat" based on the Fallout video game series. Some fans have created video games based on Friendship Is Magic, such as the fighting game My Little Pony: Fighting Is Magic, modifications of existing games like Team Fortress 2 and The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, or crossover artwork between the animated show and video game settings. Flash-based applications allow fans to create their own pony characters in the artistic style of the show.
The fandom has been noted for the quantity and diversity of music produced by its members, including cover versions of songs from the show and original songs inspired by the show and its fandom. In January 2014, BronyTunes (an iOS and web app) was released that collected over 7,000 songs and remixes inspired by the show. "Everfree Network", a brony media network, compiled more than 4,800 pieces of fan music by over 500 different musicians in late December 2011. Thiessen commented that many of these fan productions approach the quality of his studio's work, and suggested the possibility of crowd-sourcing some aspects of future production, while the show's composer, Daniel Ingram, often features fan-made songs on his personal webspace. A group of fan musicians compiled a charity album of original songs, entitled Smile, which raised over $21,000 within a month for the Children's Cancer Association.
Production staff and castEdit
Lauren Faust, the then-executive producer, expressed appreciation for show's adult fans on her DeviantArt page. Faust had not expected men without children to watch it, but said, "The fact that they did and that they were open-minded and cool enough and secure in their masculinity enough to embrace it and love it and go online and talk about how much they love it—I'm kind of proud." Of her surprise to the unexpected fandom, Faust said, "From the messages I've received, these episodes have lifted spirits, brought parents and kids together, changed perspectives and inspired the most unlikely of people in the most unlikely of places. Who would have thought it from a show about candy-colored ponies?"
Faust noted the cynicism about the brony fandom, and commented that in considering the idea of grown men watching a show for little girls, "They think there's something wrong with that, something devious about it"; she noted that it was "upsetting to me that people jump to those conclusions". Faust believes that her future animated shows aimed at girls will be easier to sell considering the male adult fandom of Friendship Is Magic, and that that type of programming is not as great a risk as is perceived. After Hasbro issued a cease and desist to the Fighting Is Magic project over the use of copyrighted and trademarked characters, Faust offered to provide the developers with original character arts to allow them to continue to develop the game without copyright issues.
The Internet groups surrounding the fandom have enabled the show's producers to quickly assess their work; director and producer Jayson Thiessen stated "As soon as the episode airs, I can go online and see people's responses in real time". Many of the creative staff are on various social media services and directly interact with the fandom, including doing questions-and-answer sessions live during the broadcast of new episodes. Daniel Ingram, who writes and composes of the songs featured in the show, was pleased with the fan's reaction to the series' music but said, "I never forget about the original demographic of our show, which is six-year-old girls. Just because it's for kids... I don't think that influences me in terms of how sophisticated I want to make the music."
The voice actors also showed appreciation for the adult and male fans. Andrea Libman, who voices Pinkie Pie and Fluttershy, found that more people wanted to meet her as a result of the show and commented that among the fan community, "there's some really talented artists doing really amazing stuff". Tara Strong, who voices Twilight Sparkle, used Twitter to interact with fans and started a "Twilightlicious" meme trend. Ashleigh Ball, who voices Rainbow Dash and Applejack, attributes increased attention her band Hey Ocean! has received to the brony community and Michelle Creber, who voices Apple Bloom and provides the singing voice for Sweetie Belle, has collaborated with fan musicians in order to create new works.
John de Lancie was enthralled by the sudden surge in fandom from the brony community after the broadcast of a two-part second season premiere episode featuring his voice work as Discord (which Faust had created after a character previously played by de Lancie, Q from Star Trek: The Next Generation), and has embraced the attention. He compared the male fandom of a girl-oriented show to the large number of female fans of the original Star Trek series, and the parallels of what the fans did to support the respective shows. De Lancie helped to make a Kickstarter-funded documentary at the fourth BronyCon convention about the growing fandom, Bronies: The Extremely Unexpected Adult Fans of My Little Pony. Faust, de Lancie and Strong were credited as executive producers on the project. The funding drive ended with over $320,000 in pledges, making it the second most funded film project on Kickstarter at the time. After its release, the project has announced plans to remake the documentary to incorporate additional footage taken at European fandom gatherings. This has been shown at film festivals in 2013 and released for home media distribution.
Similarly, Ball's surprise at the appreciation of the fandom led her to participate in another documentary, A Brony Tale, directed by Brent Hodge, recording her participation at the January 2012 BronyCon event in New York City, as well as discussions with members of the fandom. The film, which was picked up for distribution by Morgan Spurlock, debuted to critical praise at the 2014 Tribeca Film Festival, and reached theatrical and home media markets in July 2014.
At times, portions of the brony fandom have reacted passionately to changes in the direction of the show, such as in the change to "The Last Roundup" episode involving the Derpy Hooves character. Similarly, the Season 3 finale episode "Magical Mystery Cure" ended with main character Twilight Sparkle transforming into a winged unicorn (alicorn) and being named a princess. This change was revealed prior to the episode's airing and a portion of the fandom were critical of the change, referring to it as a "jump the shark" moment for the series while others considered that it was a significant change of one of the show's more popular characters that most of the brony fandom could relate with. The showrunners stated in response that while Twilight's physical appearance would change, this would not otherwise alter her personality or the general concept of the show. On the announcement of the My Little Pony: Equestria Girls feature-length animated film, in which the pony characters are re-envisioned as human teenage girls attending high school, a large fraction of the adult fandom reacted negatively towards the premise. Several fans stated that this was a corporate play by Hasbro and veered away from the direction that Faust had envisioned for the show at its onset, while others commented on the cliched aspect of a high school comedy, the overly thin appearance of the human characters, and other factors. The fan site Equestria Daily had issued a caution to its readers to not lash out at the show's creators who had also worked on the film, and other more predominant figures of the fandom urged others to continue to support the staff. Equestria Daily's Shaun Scotellaro considered the fandom's behavior to be "your typical overreaction to something changing in your favorite series".
Allusions within the showEdit
Faust and the production team have acknowledged some of the fandom and fan-created elements of the show and incorporated them into the animation. Though Hasbro's priority is to deliver a child-friendly show, the writers and production staff according to Linda Steiner, senior vice president of Hasbro Studios, "We will certainly, for fun, do the 'bronie' [sic] check to see if this could pass with them, but our job is to deliver to the kids first." Margaret Loesch, president and chief executive of Hub Network, said that they have kept their nods to the fandom to subtle hints. She added, "We haven't driven this movement, the fans have, and we don't want to get ahead of that. We want to nourish this phenomenon, not manipulate it." A writer for the show, Meghan McCarthy, said, "Some pop culture-y things are thrown in, but we don't want to do anything that's too 'wink wink'. It detracts from the story that we're trying to tell". Many of the nods to the older audience are drawn in by the storyboard artists and animators, who are challenged to populate scripted scenes with background ponies; McCarthy points the example of ponies fashioned after the main characters from The Big Lebowski due to having to fill in space for scenes set in a bowling alley for the episode "The Cutie Pox".
In the first episode, a background gray Pegasus pony is shown in one scene with a cross-eyed stare which was the result of an overlooked animator's joke. The 4chan boards quickly dubbed the character "Derpy Hooves" (based on the internet slang word "derp") and created a more detailed personality for her despite having minimal on-screen time. Faust responded to the fans, and the production team has kept the "Derpy" character with the cross-eyed look starting with "Feeling Pinkie Keen", where the team incorporated her into a slapstick sight gag. The character has since become a mascot of the fandom. According to supervising director Jayson Thiessen, the teams considered the character "like a little Easter egg for people to catch".
At the conclusion of the first season, one of the show's animators confirmed that "Derpy" would be a scripted background character in the second season, and was a part of several sight gags. In the original broadcast of the second season episode "The Last Roundup" as well as on the home media release The Friendship Express, "Derpy" was called out by name by Rainbow Dash and was given lines (as voiced by St. Germain) and klutzy mannerisms as a direct call-out to the brony fandom. Though most of the fans appreciated the inclusion, some viewers had a negative response to the character, believing her portrayal insulted the mentally handicapped. Hasbro subsequently modified these scenes and while "Derpy" is still present in subsequent broadcast and digital versions of the episode, she is unnamed and a different voice is used. According to Hasbro's Nicole Agnello, "Some viewers felt that aspects of the episode 'The Last Roundup' did not stay true to the core message of friendship which is the heart and soul of the series. Hasbro Studios decided to make slight audio alterations to this single episode." Despite Hasbro's intentions, some members of the brony community were disappointed to which they made efforts to restore the original voice. "Derpy" remained in background cameos throughout other episodes in season 2 and 3. Within season 4, Derpy was re-introduced, remaining silent and unnamed but with her original wall-eyed look, as a side character in the main story of "Rainbow Falls". The appearance was planned as a big reveal for the brony fans, according to co-director Jim Miller, and that "she is here to stay" according to Hasbro's vice president for entertainment Mike Vogel. The Derpy character is used often on Hasbro's marketing of the show. For example, Hasbro's exclusive pony toy at the Comic-Con International and My Little Pony Fair in 2012 was based on "Derpy", and has the same cross-eye look.
Other non-speaking background characters that caught the attention of the fandom also had expanded roles. For example, a silent female unicorn pony character sporting neon colors and sunglasses and manning a DJ mixer that briefly appeared in "Suited for Success", was given the stage name "DJ P0N-3" in an online poll held by Equestria Daily. This name was reused in the "Equestria Girls" advertisement. The character also appeared as a DJ in the season 2 finale "A Canterlot Wedding – Part 2" and became part of the new release of My Little Pony toys in late 2012, and was the 2013 San Diego Comic-Con exclusive figurine. The character additionally had an expanded yet also non-speaking role in the second Equestria Girls film Rainbow Rocks.
Fans of the show also nicknamed a male pony character with a brown coat, messy brown mane and an hourglass cutie mark "Doctor Whooves" because of a purported likeness to David Tennant's portrayal of the Doctor from the long-running BBC television series Doctor Who. The character had a minor speaking role in the episode "Call of the Cutie" and a brief role as a time-keeper in the episode "The Super Speedy Cider Squeezy 6000". Other licensed media further carry the homage: Enterplay's trading card line associates the character, named "Time Turner", as dealing with "all things timey-wimey" around Ponyville, alluding to a famous quote from the episode "Blink", while one of the store-exclusive covers for the Friendship Is Magic comic set the Doctor Whooves character among many iconic Doctor Who elements. The character was openly named Doctor Hooves in The Elements of Harmony: The Official Guidebook, published by Little, Brown and Company. Prof. Colin Burnett of Washington University of St. Louis considered the adoption of these fan names and characteristics within the show as demonstration of co-creative collaboration that can exist in modern media, emphasized by unexpected demographics of bronies that helped to bolster the creators' success with the work.
As a tribute to the older fandom as well as all other fans of the show, the milestone 100th episode "Slice of Life", which was first broadcast in 2015, featured several of the background characters that the fans had made popular including Derpy (now named "Muffins"), Doctor Whooves and DJ P0N-3 among others.
Hasbro and Hub NetworkEdit
Hasbro and Hub Network (prior to its rebranding as Discovery Family) have also sought to market to bronies. Steiner said, "You develop the best show you can, and hope the humor will translate to a broader audience. But I've been in the business for 25 years and I've never seen anything like this." A company spokeswoman said that bronies are "a small group of My Little Pony fans who don't necessarily fit what one might expect to be the brand's target audience", while its core audience in the older market is predominantly females. Despite the bronies being an unusual and unexpected audience, Hasbro and Hub Network chose to "salute and embrace all the viewers who have embraced our brand", according to Margaret Loesch, CEO of Hub Network and former executive producer of the original My Little Pony animated series. Hasbro has allowed the fandom to be an organic movement leading to its growth and success, according to Stephen Davis, head of Hasbro Studios.
Before the brony fandom arose, Hasbro had introduced new My Little Pony toys, including convention-exclusives, at the San Diego Comic Con International. With a brony element in attendance, the convention-exclusive toys have reflected the brony culture; a large poster was published in 2011 that included several background characters that had attracted the fandom's interest. A pony toy named "Derpy" was made available for both the convention and My Little Pony Fair in 2012. Toys "R" Us provided early, limited numbers of new toy based on the zebra character Zecora, due for release in late 2012 by Hasbro. Both Zecora and "Derpy" toys sold out within the first day of the convention. In 2014, Shapeways announced an association with Hasbro to create 3D printed versions of Friendship Is Magic characters, with fan artists creating and selling their designs under Hasbro's license and approval. Shapeways had previously published fan-financed and -created models without Hasbro's license before being asked to cease and desist such practice; the new approach with Hasbro's blessing has been seen as helping to break down the walls between content and fans in the age of social media.
Teenage and adult fans have shown interest in clothing with images from the show; Erin Comella, brand manager for My Little Pony, said that these fans are "literally dressed in the brand". Hasbro has been providing its licensed clothing vendors such as Hot Topic with My Little Pony-themed shirts and other apparel for all genders and multiple age groups. In part of the older fanbase, Hasbro has come to consider My Little Pony as a "lifestyle" brand, and as of February 2013[update], has arranged over 200 licenses across fifteen categories of products. According to Julie Duffy, Hasbro's vice president of global brand publicity, while their primary market is the young demographic, "[Hasbro has] found ways to strike the right balance by working with licensees to offer [their] adult fans exciting merchandise geared just for them". Though Hasbro has not revealed how much of My Little Pony product sales are bolstered by the brony fandom, Caitlin Dewey of The Washington Post suggests that the continued success of the franchise four years after its introduction is tied in part to bronies' interest in the show and products, and Hasbro's williness to market products towards the adult audience.
Hasbro and Hub Network have used advertising parodying others' works that are more geared towards the adult fans. Hub Network used a promotional billboard in Los Angeles showing the pony characters parodying the films Bridesmaids and Poltergeist. Hub Network also made a parody of Apple's technorati-oriented App Store, which included the phrase, "There's a pony for that." A promotional campaign leading up to the second season finale, "A Canterlot Wedding", in which Twilight's brother Shining Armor marries Princess Cadance, parodied elements of the 2011 British royal wedding, including the placement of an advertisement in the New York Times wedding announcement section.
At the onset of the fandom, Hasbro was generally tolerant of uploads of content and derivative works on sites such as YouTube. However, in late 2011, a fan-run website called "Ponyarchive" that was reposting for no cost the complete high-definition episodes that were being sold on iTunes closed down after receiving cease and desist letters from Hasbro. The otherwise "hands-off" policy has enabled the growth of the fandom. In another case, Hasbro was required to take legal action to protect the My Little Pony trademark against a group working on a massively multiplayer online game, MLP: Online, though the developers, after working with Hasbro's legal team, are seeking to develop a new Friendship Is Magic-related game without the trademark issues. Though many fan-created videos combine copyright footage of Friendship Is Magic with adult elements from films inappropriate for children like Inglourious Basterds or foul language from musical artists such as Wu-Tang Clan, Hasbro has not taken a stance against these videos and has recognized that the parodies and remixes form a culture of participation that has helped to draw larger attention to the show. In light of the Stop Online Piracy Act, Daniel Nye Griffiths of Forbes considered the fans' re-use of copyrighted works and creation of new works from them as examples of the inevitable result of any media gaining a fandom, and praised Hasbro for embracing the means to extend the brand through this instead of trying endlessly to stop such infringements. More recently, Hasbro has taken a more proactive stance, including issuing cease and desist letters to more visible projects such as My Little Pony: Fighting Is Magic and MLP Online, and selling episodes on YouTube, which in turn has caused some fan videos to run afoul of YouTube's Content ID system.
A monthly My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic comic began its run in November 2012 by IDW Publishing. The comic, like the show, is aimed to appeal to younger children with their parents, but includes various pop culture and fandom nods to draw in the older readers. IDW has reported that over 100,000 copies of the first issue were pre-ordered, outselling numerous other comic for that month, and making it the best selling issue in IDW's history, as well as one of the best selling single issue comics of 2012. IDW have made plans to reprint the first issue to meet further demand as well as republish the first set as a standalone volume early in 2013. The monthly comic and its separate "micro-series", featuring single-issue stories that focus on one character, have regularly been along the top 100 issues sold each month, one of the few non-DC, non-Marvel comics outside of The Walking Dead that appear in this list, and remain IDW's top-selling publication.
In addition to releasing official digital albums of songs from the show due to brony demand, Hasbro has worked with Lakeshore Records to create an album of EDM remixes of the show's songs, entitled DJPON3 Presents My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic Remixed inspired by the numerous fan remixes.
The adult fandom has been perceived negatively by others, with coverage of the brony fandom overshadowing the show itself. Much of the fandom's ridicule from others comes from the perception of the mostly adult male fanbase enjoying a show that is marketed to the young female demographic. Through this, the brony community has encountered ridicule through trolling on internet forums, not only from its inception at 4chan, but after moving away from the site. This has also been called out in conservative popular media. The Fox News Channel comedy talk program Red Eye poked fun at the fandom because it largely consists of young adult males. Commenting on Schlichter's article, Greg Pollowitz of the National Review Online wrote that considering the target audience he could not understand the show's appeal to adult men. Jerry Springer attempted to bring bronies onto his talk for a segment on "Outrageously Guilty Pleasures", though fans warned others about the potential ridicule.
The gender-based criticism has also affected younger male fans of the show, such as with Michael Morones above. Another story that gained national attention was that of Grayson Bruce, a nine-year-old fan who was told to stop bringing a Rainbow Dash backpack to school to prevent bullying that he was receiving. An online campaign to show support for Grayson gained over 32,000 supporters on its Facebook page, and the brony fanbase, the show's creators and voice actors, and various news commentators like Glenn Beck, Ronan Farrow and Eugene Volokh have stood up for the boy's actions. The school later revised its decision after speaking to the family and clarifying it was not trying to blame the student for the incident.
Rebecca Angel, writing for Wired's Geekmom column, described some of the negative feedback from fellow writers about the mostly male brony culture that included accusations of pedophilia, homosexuality, and immaturity. Angel defended the fandom's culture, describing adult fans' interest as a form of escapism, and that the show provides characters they can relate to and talk about with other fans. She also acknowledged the double standard whereas females can watch male-oriented entertainment without question, while male bronies receive criticism about their interest in the show. Angel later described the brony fandom as rebellious towards gender roles, stating that "having interests that go against what men are supposed to embrace is the sneakiest kind of rebellion". In a similar vein, an "Idea Channel" segment from the Public Broadcasting Service said that the ridicule received by the brony community is partly because the male appreciation for the show challenges preconceived notions of gender roles in the mass media.
Violence and pornographyEdit
Some media have been critical of the adult-oriented material created by fans. In some cases, these videos may appear in Internet searches that children may perform while looking for online copies of the program or while searching for images of characters from the show, forcing parents to have to discuss pornography and sex with their children. One parody series, drawn by animator Max Gilardi in the style of John Kricfalusi, places the characters in explicit adult situations and was described by the web site io9 as "disgusting ... and most certainly NSFW". Fans acknowledge that such material is generated by a subset of the group, but consider it "an unavoidable part of any online fandom", as described by TV Guide's Sadie Gennis, and do not worry about this facet.
Male hegemony and alienationEdit
A study performed by graduate students from the University of Connecticut found that "a particularly extreme subset" of the brony fandom shows characteristics of hegemonic masculinity, where male members strive to keep their majority in the numbers by purposely excluding and alienating females. Sherilyn Connelly and others have noted that bronies alienate other fans of the franchise by focusing on the fandom itself rather than the franchise.(2:3) Bronies created an atmosphere of entitlement and anger when the franchise didn't accommodate the fans' demands, resulting in a culture where death threats are made publicly and lightly.(5:2–5)
Before Hasbro revived the toy series with its Friendship Is Magic line, the My Little Pony toys were collected mainly by women who grew up with the toys during the 1980s and 1990s. Bonnie Zacherle, the original creator of the franchise, noted that the toys and show were originally conceived to appeal to preschool children of both genders, and considers it a "good thing" for the adult fandom to have the same appreciation of the show as the collectors. According to Summer Hayes, author of six books about My Little Pony toy collections and organizer of the annual My Little Pony collectors' fair, some of these collectors appreciated the attention of the brony community. Hayes said that the brony community has participated in the toy fair, and that other collectors resent the sudden popularity of Friendship Is Magic. She said that that these earlier fans and collectors had thought; " ... what about us? We've been here forever, and nobody seemed to care. But now that there are all these guys in their 20s that are crazy about it, it's suddenly important and it means something." Hayes also said, "To the bronies, I say, I think My Little Pony is awesome, so more power to you".
The adult fandom has gained media attention through outlets such as Wired, Fox News Channel and The Wall Street Journal. Stephen Colbert gave a shout-out to the brony fandom at least twice on his comedy news show, The Colbert Report, although since then his positive connection with the fan base has become questionable. Erin Burnett of CNN's Outfront reported on the 2012 Summer BronyCon, and ended the segment with a recolored character from the show representing the pony version of herself. The fans gave her some artwork of her character as a way of "welcoming [her] to the herd". NPR's comedy radio show Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me! highlighted the brony fandom in an episode in June 2011, and the following week quizzed former US President Bill Clinton about elements from the show during a telephone interview segment called "Not My Job"; Clinton correctly answered the three multiple choice questions, leading at least one journalist to jokingly refer to him as a brony. An episode of Hot In Cleveland dealing with fan conventions included references to the brony fandom.
Lexicographer Grant Barrett listed "brony" as a memorable new word of 2011. Time named "the bronies" as the ninth-best meme of 2011, the Internet meme research site Know Your Meme listed it among its top ten memes of 2011, and PC Magazine named it one of 2011's top memes.
In popular cultureEdit
The adult fandom of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic has led to references to the program in popular culture. The animated television show Mad spoofed Friendship Is Magic at least twice; one segment was called "My Little War Horse". An episode of Bob's Burgers, "The Equestranauts", satirized bronies and their conventions. A secret level in the video game Diablo III included enemies named "Rainbow Western", "Midnight Sparkle" and "Nightmarity", alluding to Friendship Is Magic. Owlchemy Labs added a "Brony Mode" to their video game Snuggle Truck as free downloadable content in October 2012 specifically as a nod to the brony community. The mode replaces the fuzzy animals in the game with Friendship Is Magic-inspired ponies which the user must drive safely across a landscape. An extended character, the Mechromancer, available as downloadable content for the game Borderlands 2, includes numerous references to the show and the fans through the character's skill tree. Bronies: The Musical is a 2014 off-Broadway production written by Tom Moore and Heidi Powers that is inspired by the brony culture, and won for Best Musical in the Hollywood Fringe Festival. The popularity of the show as a result of the brony fandom led to a brief bit of animation created by the show to be used in an NFL advertisement during Super Bowl XLIX.
The Pirate Party Germany's parliamentary group in the Abgeordnetenhaus of Berlin (the Berlin state parliament) has insisted on the inclusion of a break called "pony time", in which an episode from the series is shown, during their meetings at their parliamentary office, which displeased many other members in the Berlin parliament. The internet activist group Anonymous used the character Rainbow Dash to deface the website of the Social Democratic Party of Austria in 2011 and 2012. A teenage white hat hacker used the name "Pinkie Pie" for anonymity and a fan drawing of the character wielding an axe as part of a successful entry in an early 2012 contest sponsored by Google Chrome to break the security of the web browser; the same user also was the first to break the security in a second contest held later in 2012, and found an important security flaw in the Linux kernel. A May 2013 update to Google Hangouts included an easter egg that would have Friendship Is Magic-inspired ponies run across the chat window. A similar update in August 2013 as part of YouTube's "Geek Week" added two easter eggs, one that would cause ponies to cross the screen on searching for "bronies", and a second that, if searching on a number of different pony names like "Twilight Sparkle", would change the site's title bar to a representative color of that pony.
An article that appeared in the New York Times on December 26, 2011, "Navigating Love and Autism" by Amy Harmon, described how a young woman with Asperger syndrome used My Little Pony characters to relieve stress. She visualized the character Twilight Sparkle whenever she "found herself in a bad-mood rut". The story misidentified Twilight Sparkle as Fluttershy on initial publication and the paper issued a correction, which some journalists have jokingly considered as "the best New York Times correction ever", though others saw it as a sign of the journalistic integrity of the Times. Harmon was contacted by fans about the mistake, and said, "I hate to get anything wrong, but I confess to some enjoyment in finding the right way to phrase this one." In 2015, the New York Times reported that Dylann Roof, the suspect in the Charleston church shooting, was a fan of My Little Pony, but later corrected itself after recognizing it had been duped in a experiment run by a blogger, who had faked the claim but made it as credible as possible as to test how much fact checking major news sources were doing on a high-interest topic.
The musician Andrew W.K. said that he strongly identifies with the over-enthusiastic character of Pinkie Pie. He said, "She's another creature, much like I am in this world, who is doing everything she can to have fun," and that he feels inspired by the character spreading excitement and joy to others. He hosted a panel called "What Would Pinkie Pie Do?" at the Canterlot Gardens convention in September 2012, and described it as "the most intense experience of [his] life".
Lena Hall, a Broadway actress and singer, stated she watches the show as it makes her feel "super happy" and appreciates the lessons the show teaches, and considers herself a "Pegasister". In winning the 2014 Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical, Hall ended her acceptance speech mentioning the television show's subtitle, "Friendship Is Magic". Over four months after her shout-out at the Tonys, Hall announced on her Twitter that she would be a guest star in the show's fifth season, and soon appeared in the episode "The Mane Attraction" as Coloratura/Rara. Upon the episode's premiere, Hall live streamed her reaction to the episode with her niece on Periscope and letting viewers ask questions during the commercial breaks, she went into detail about her experiences behind the scenes of the production of the episode and her history with the show itself, admitting to binge-watching the first three seasons of the show when she first started to watch it.
After a call-out to bronies on Twitter by fellow professional wrestler Dolph Ziggler, Xavier Woods publicly came out as a brony on March 2015. Woods and his fellow members of The New Day, a wrestling stable who were WWE Raw Tag Team Champions at the time (and would go on to become the longest reigning team in WWE history), subsequently added unicorn imagery as a part of their gimmick, even claiming to possess "unicorn magic" to help them in their matches. They also named one of their signature moves the Unicorn Stampede.
Actor Billy Bob Thornton admitted to watching the show during a 2016 interview with GQ. He and his daughter Bella used to watch My Little Pony, which she eventually grew out of, and when searching for the series to watch again, came across Friendship Is Magic and started watching it with her. He also liked the show's positive messages about how the world works, pointing to "The Cutie Map" as an example. On an episode of Late Night with Seth Meyers, Thornton also claimed that while his daughter's favorite character is Twilight Sparkle, his favorites were Fluttershy (who he said was his favorite because "she talks like Marilyn Monroe") and Rainbow Dash.
William Shatner confirmed himself to be a Brony through his personal Twitter, and had been a guest star in the show's seventh season's episode "The Perfect Pear", along with Felicia Day, who appeared in the very same episode.
- "Bronies Are Redefining Fandom — And American Manhood". Wired. Retrieved June 15, 2016.
- "The fascinating sub-culture of 'Bronies'". Newshub. Archived from the original on
|archive-date=(help). Retrieved June 15, 2016.
- Amidi, Amid (October 19, 2010). "The End of the Creator-Driven Era in TV Animation". Cartoon Brew. Retrieved June 9, 2011.
- Dennis, Scott (March 10, 2011). "Ponies overachieving, from feminism to 4chan". The Daily Barometer. Archived from the original on January 21, 2013. Retrieved October 11, 2013.
- Beck, Jerry (September 24, 2011). "We've Created A Bronster!". Cartoon Brew. Retrieved September 25, 2011.
- LaMarche, Una (August 3, 2011). "Pony Up Haters: How 4chan Gave Birth to the Bronies". The New York Observer. Retrieved August 3, 2011.
- Weinman, Jaime (September 7, 2011). "Men who love 'My Little Pony'". Maclean's. Retrieved September 8, 2011.
- Angel, Rebecca (May 27, 2012). "In Defense of Bronies". Wired. Retrieved May 27, 2012.
- Christopher Poole (Moot) at SXSW. YouTube. March 13, 2011. Retrieved August 4, 2011.
- Burnett, Sam (July 2, 2011). "Show Pony". The Mercury. Retrieved July 4, 2011.
- Ostroff, Joshua (August 3, 2011). "All-ages show: Hipsters love children's programming". National Post. Retrieved January 22, 2018.
- Ostroff, Joshua (August 8, 2011). "TV for all ages". Ottawa Citizen. Archived from the original on January 21, 2013. Retrieved August 9, 2011.
- Strike, Joe (July 5, 2011). "Of Ponies and Bronies". Animation World Network. Retrieved July 6, 2011.
- Pollack, Judann (November 28, 2011). "'My Little Pony: The Friendship Is Magic' Gains Unexpected Audience – Adults". Ad Age. Retrieved November 28, 2011.
- Abrams, Natalie (January 19, 2012). "VIDEO: My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic Pays Tribute to I Love Lucy". TV Guide. Retrieved January 19, 2012.
- Furlong, Maggie (January 23, 2014). "'My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic' First Look: Things Take a "Fear and Loathing" Turn". Yahoo!. Retrieved January 23, 2014.
- Watchcutter, Angela (June 9, 2011). "My Little Pony Corrals Unlikely Fanboys Known as 'Bronies'". Wired. Retrieved June 9, 2011.
- House, Kelly (September 17, 2011). "Meet 'bronies' – grown men who are fans of My Little Pony". The Oregonian. Retrieved September 17, 2011.
- Truitt, Brian (November 26, 2012). "'My Little Pony' plants a hoof in pop culture". USA Today. Retrieved November 26, 2012.
- Drabinski, Kate (August 7, 2013). "WHAT'S SO FUNNY 'BOUT PEACE, LOVE, AND BRONYCON?". Baltimore City Paper. Archived from the original on April 15, 2014. Retrieved August 7, 2013.
- Connelly, Sherilyn (January 17, 2012). "Meet the Furries and Fans at 2012's Most Unconventional Convention". SF Weekly. Retrieved January 17, 2012.
- Orsini, Lauren Rae (February 12, 2012). "Researchers strive to understand brony culture". The Daily Dot. Retrieved June 12, 2012.
- Stohs-Krause, Hilary (May 13, 2013). "'Brony' Fandom Carves Out Space For Young Men To Enjoy Friendship ... And Cartoon Ponies". Nebraska Educational Telecommunications. Retrieved May 13, 2013.
- Gutekunst, Adam; Levy, Dustin (July 31, 2013). "BronyCon 2013 brings thousands of 'My Little Pony' lovers to Baltimore". Baltimore Sun. Retrieved July 31, 2013.
- Antonelli, William (August 28, 2018). "Friendship was magic: How Bronies are preparing for the end of My Little Pony". Polygon. Retrieved August 28, 2018.
- Forrest, Maura (January 11, 2019). "End of the brony golden age? Angst among adult fans of My Little Pony as community declines". National Post. Retrieved January 24, 2019.
- von Hoffman, Constantine (May 31, 2011). "My Little Pony: the Hip, New Trend Among the Geekerati". CBS News. Retrieved May 31, 2011.
- McKean, Erin (December 2, 2011). "The secret language of bros". The Boston Globe. Archived from the original on April 19, 2012. Retrieved December 2, 2011.
- Vara, Vauhini; Zimmerman, Ann (November 4, 2011). "Hey, Bro, That's My Little Pony! Guys' Interest Mounts in Girly TV Show". The Wall Street Journal. Archived from the original on December 1, 2011. Retrieved November 4, 2011.
- Wickman, Kase (January 9, 2012). "The Bronies Take Manhattan". The Awl. Retrieved January 11, 2012.
- Edwards, Patrick; Redden, Marsha. "The Brony Study". Patrick Edwards. Retrieved January 11, 2012.
- Watercutter, Angela (January 10, 2011). "Brony Census Tracks 'State of the Herd'". Wired. Retrieved January 11, 2011.
- Turner, James. "Brony Herd Census & State of the Herd Report". Retrieved November 15, 2016.
- Sporman, Sean (March 24, 2013). "Online 'Brony Herd Census' Reveals Facts, Stats About Adult My Little Pony Fans". WTVY. Archived from the original on April 4, 2016. Retrieved March 24, 2013.
- Elder, Jon (October 13, 2013). "Brony spectacle signals acceptance of 'different kinds' of masculinity". The Age. Melbourne. Retrieved October 13, 2013.
- Gennis, Sadie (August 1, 2013). "Give Bronies a Break! In Defense of Adult My Little Pony Fans". TV Guide. Retrieved August 1, 2013.
- Winter, Jana (July 18, 2012). "Warhorse: The military's 'My Little Pony' fan club". Fox News. Retrieved July 18, 2012.
- Schogol, Jeff (July 25, 2013). "Trainees adopt 'My Little Pony' class patch". Military Times. Archived from the original on July 28, 2013. Retrieved July 29, 2013.
- Abad-Santos, Alexander (October 12, 2012). "Learning to Love Bronies at Comic-Con". The Atlantic. Retrieved October 12, 2012.
- Chen, Adrian; Read, Max (January 8, 2012). "Here Are Some Adult My Little Pony Fanatics We Met at BronyCon". Gawker. Retrieved August 22, 2012.
- O'Connell, Margaret (July 23, 2012). "Bronies, Otaku, and My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, Part 1". Sequential Tart. Retrieved August 22, 2012.
- O'Connell, Margaret (July 30, 2012). "Bronies, Otaku, and My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, Part 2". Sequential Tart. Retrieved August 22, 2012.
- Peters, Chris (March 19, 2013). "'Bronies' (dudes who like 'My Little Pony') have strong community in Nebraska". Omaha World-Herald. Retrieved March 19, 2013.
- Ghomeshi, Jian (December 7, 2011). Curious about Bronies? (Radio broadcast). CBC Radio. Archived from the original (Adobe Flash) on January 7, 2012. Retrieved December 7, 2011.
- Watercutter, Angela (November 5, 2011). "Bronies' TV Spot Shows Changing Face of My Little Pony Herd". Wired. Retrieved November 5, 2012.
- Weinman, Jaime (September 7, 2011). "Ponies Do Sondheim". Maclean's. Retrieved September 23, 2011.
- "Sethisto" (June 15, 2014). "Half a Billion Celebration Time". Equestria Daily. Retrieved June 16, 2014.
- Gibson, Megan (June 10, 2011). "The Newest Internet Bro Craze: 'My Little Pony'". Time. Retrieved June 10, 2011.
- Hix, Lisa (June 28, 2012). "My Little Pony Smackdown: Girls vs. Bronies". Collectors Weekly. Retrieved June 28, 2012.
- Brogen, Jacob (September 4, 2017). "Memes Are the New Jump-Rope Songs". Slate. Retrieved March 18, 2018.
- "Web Cultures Web Archive". Library of Congress. Retrieved March 18, 2018.
- "Convention History". BronyCon. Archived from the original on March 15, 2015. Retrieved March 10, 2015.
- "My Little Pony's Tara Strong Chooses Twilight Sparkle For Her First-Ever Cosplay". www.themarysue.com.
- Tucker, Reed (January 11, 2012). "Horsing around!". New York Post.
- Wennemer, Rob (June 29, 2012). "Pittsburgh guys profess love for My Little Pony". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved June 29, 2012.
- Connelly, Sherilyn (August 22, 2012). "Beyond BronyCon: Inside the My Little Pony Convention, Everfree Northwest". SF Weekly. Retrieved September 17, 2012.
- Hayes, Natalie (September 14, 2012). "Dressage for the 'Pony' set". Chicago Sun-Times. Archived from the original on August 26, 2014. Retrieved September 17, 2012.
- "Andrew W.K. to Speak at 'My Little Pony' Convention". Rolling Stone. June 13, 2012. Retrieved June 13, 2012.
- Ohanesian, Liz (November 5, 2012). "Equestria L.A.: Southern California Gets Its Own Brony Convention, for My Little Pony Fans". LA Weekly. Retrieved November 5, 2011.
- Stewart, Kris (November 20, 2014). "My Little Brony: Friendship is magic". The Pioneer. Retrieved December 2, 2014.
- Hortillosa, Summer Dawn (June 11, 2014). "My Little Pony fans flock to Big Apple Ponycon in Jersey City". The Jersey Journal. Retrieved August 24, 2014.
- Wright, David; Louszko, Ashley; Effron, Lauren (February 25, 2015). "'My Little Pony's' Mass Appeal: Young Girls, 'Bronies' Share Mutual Love for Cartoon". Nightline. ABC News. Retrieved February 25, 2015.
- "Bronies invade B.C. for 2nd BronyCAN My Little Pony convention". CBC. August 24, 2014. Retrieved August 24, 2014.
- Spoman, Sean (August 5, 2013). "My Little Pony Fans Celebrate Friendship Is Magic at Germany's GalaCon". WTVY. Archived from the original on March 4, 2016. Retrieved January 30, 2014.
- "Darren McMullen's Wild Side 1". Darren McMullen's Outsiders. April 1, 2014. National Geographic Australia.
- Murphy, Damien (April 5, 2013). "My Little Pony gains growing legion of fans from left field". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved April 5, 2013.
- Roth, Max (July 17, 2015). "My Little Pony convention welcomes 800 bronies to downtown SLC". Retrieved July 25, 2016.
- Schroeder, Lauryn (January 10, 2016). "My Little Pony fans invade San Diego". San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved March 29, 2016.
- Williams, Zoe (October 5, 2012). "Men in tiaras join UK's biggest My Little Pony fans". The Guardian. London. Retrieved October 5, 2012.
- Constable, Burt (June 23, 2015). "Constable: 'My Little Pony' convention corrals girls, collectors, Bronies". Daily Herald. Retrieved June 23, 2015.
- O'Conner, Rod (August 19, 2015). "Meet the Adult Men Who Worship My Little Pony". Chicago Magazine. Retrieved August 21, 2015.
- Heyman, Marshall (October 14, 2012). "An Evening of Horse Shoes and Pony Tales". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved October 16, 2012.
- Zuckerman, Esther (October 15, 2012). "What 'My Little Pony' Art Looks Like". The Atlantic. Retrieved October 15, 2012.
- Schmidt, Gregory (March 2, 2013). "Classic Toys Redesigned to Traverse Generations". New York Times. Retrieved March 2, 2013.
- Orsini, Lauren (July 2, 2012). "Behind The Scenes Of The Brony Thank You Project". The Daily Dot. Retrieved November 3, 2012.
- "NH Secretary of State Listing for The Brony Thank You Fund, Incorporated". May 8, 2012. Archived from the original on January 4, 2014. Retrieved November 5, 2012.
- Doctorow, Cory (May 14, 2013). "My Little Pony fans successfully register a 501(c)3 charity for fannish good works". Boing Boing. Retrieved May 14, 2013.
- Vlahos, Kelley (January 3, 2014). "Rise of the Bronies". The American Conservative. Retrieved January 3, 2014.
- "We Did It!". The Brony Thank You Fund. November 28, 2013. Retrieved January 18, 2014.
- "Seeds of Kindness Fundraiser Launched – Your Siblings". Your Siblings. May 4, 2012. Retrieved September 1, 2013.
- "BfG: Seeds of Kindness Reports From Africa – Your Siblings". Your Siblings. June 2, 2013. Retrieved September 1, 2013.
- "Seeds of Kindness 3 Charity Lineup". Bronies for Good. July 18, 2013. Retrieved September 1, 2013.
- "Seeds of Kindness 3: A Veritable Palette of Convention Charity Programming – Derpy Hooves News". Derpy Hooves News. July 27, 2013. Retrieved September 1, 2013.
- Frederick, Brittany (February 17, 2013). "Tara Strong Teases The 'My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic' Season Finale". Star Pulse. Retrieved March 13, 2013.
- Broverman, Aaron (February 16, 2013). "Tara Strong, 'My Little Pony' Voice Actor, Talks Bronies And Evolution Of Twilight Sparkle". HuffPost TV Canada. Retrieved March 9, 2015.
- Calpain. "Kiki Memorial and Art Gathering". Equestria Daily. Retrieved February 15, 2015.
- Sporeman, Sean (May 6, 2015). "Follow-Up: My Little Pony Fans Rally Behind a Pair of Fundraisers". WTVY. Archived from the original on March 3, 2016. Retrieved May 6, 2013.
- Gander, Kashmira (February 5, 2014). "US schoolboy who attempted suicide after being bullied for liking 'My Little Pony' may have permanent brain damage". News > World. The Independent. Photo by Matt Cardy/Getty Images and photo by Simeon Leonard. London. ISSN 0951-9467. Archived from the original on February 23, 2014. Retrieved February 5, 2014.
- Goldmann, Carrie (February 1, 2014). "11-yr-old Boy Bullied for Being A Brony Fighting for Life After Suicide Attempt; How You Can Help". Chicago Now. Retrieved February 1, 2014.
- Bender, Kelli (February 4, 2014). "11-Year-Old Boy Attempts Suicide After Being Bullied for My Little Pony Passion". People.
- Wattercutter, Angela (March 11, 2014). "Bronies Are Redefining Fandom — And American Manhood". Wired. Retrieved March 11, 2014.
- "BronyCon: The Documentary by Michael Brockhoff". Kickstarter. June 10, 2012. Retrieved July 9, 2014.
- Watercutter, Angela (December 15, 2011). "Exclusive Clip: My Little Pony Tells Origin Story in Holiday Episode". Wired. Retrieved December 15, 2011.
- Maxwell, Kristen (December 28, 2011). "Sick kids and indies win with Humble Bundle's record $2.37 million haul". Video Game Writers. Archived from the original on February 13, 2012. Retrieved December 28, 2011.
- Winslett, Ryan (June 15, 2012). "Humble Indie Bundle V Rakes In More Than $5M". Cinema Blend. Retrieved June 15, 2012.
- Funk, John (May 9, 2011). "In the Grim Darkness of the Future, There Are Only Ponies". The Escapist. Retrieved October 7, 2011.
- Morgan, Matt (April 21, 2011). "T-Shirt Addict: Gaming and Memes Go Hand in Hand". GeekDad. Wired. Retrieved May 10, 2011.
- MacFarland, Kevin (May 12, 2011). "My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic is the new trailer mashup meme champion". The A.V. Club. Retrieved May 12, 2011.
- 'GrrlScientist' (June 2, 2011). "Physical impossibilities in My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic". The Guardian. London. Retrieved June 10, 2011.
- Doctorow, Cory (May 25, 2011). "Impossible physics: Why My Little Pony can't really fly". Boing Boing. Retrieved June 10, 2011.
- Stanley, T.L. (April 19, 2012). "A Brony gathering: SoCal men let their 'My Little Pony' flag fly". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved April 19, 2012.
- Hallam, Carly (May 26, 2011). "Do You Have Ten Minutes To Watch A Physics Presentation On 'My Little Pony'?". Comedy Central. Retrieved October 7, 2011.
- "My Little Pony does Top Gear". Top Gear. August 23, 2011. Retrieved August 26, 2011.
- "5 Must-See 'Gangnam Style' Response Videos". The Wall Street Journal. August 22, 2012. Retrieved August 24, 2012.
- "Pony Dances 'Gangnam Style' Too". KPopStarz. August 23, 2012. Retrieved August 24, 2012.
- Williams, Nick; Maloy, Sarah (September 19, 2012). "The 10 Best 'Gangnam Style' Parodies". Billboard. Retrieved September 19, 2012.
- Busis, Hiliary (January 31, 2013). "'My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic': A Brony explains why fans say 'neigh' to Princess Twilight". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved May 30, 2013.
- Matheson, Whitney (January 15, 2014). "Exclusive: 'Weird Al' Yankovic graces 'My Little Pony'". USA Today. Retrieved January 15, 2014.
- Nazaruk, Igor (February 6, 2012). "Kochamy pony, są nas miliony" [We love the pony, there are millions of us]. emetro.pl (in Polish). Agora SA. Archived from the original on May 13, 2012. Retrieved October 11, 2013.
Najdłuższy z nich – 'Fallout: Equestria' – rozgrywa się w postapokaliptycznej rzeczywistości i liczy już 40 rozdziałów, a jego tekst mieści się na ok. 2000 stronach A4" – "The longest of them – 'Fallout: Equestria' – set in post-apocalyptic reality and now consists of 40 chapters, and the text is located at approximately 2000 pages of A4.
- Orsini, Lauren Rae (October 8, 2012). "Behind 'Fallout: Equestria', the ultimate 'My Little Pony' tribute". The Daily Dot. Retrieved October 16, 2012.
- Noble, McKinley (June 23, 2011). "My Little Pony Gets a Street Fighter Style Fighting Game". GamePro. Archived from the original on December 1, 2011. Retrieved August 7, 2011.
- Ченцов, Илья (July 28, 2011). Большие Безобразия маленьких пони [Big Hijinks of Little Ponies] (PDF). Страна Игр (in Russian). Russia: Gameland (324): 62–70. EAN-13 4607157100056. Archived from the original (PDF) on May 6, 2012.
- Phillips, Tom (January 19, 2012). "Skyrim mod replaces dragons with My Little Pony". Eurogamer. Retrieved January 19, 2012.
- Griffiths, Daniel Nye (January 19, 2012). "SOPA, Skyrim and My Little Pony – Infringement is Magic?". Forbes. Retrieved January 19, 2012.
- Fahey, Mike (March 12, 2012). "Video Game Character or My Little Pony? Yes". Kotaku. Retrieved March 12, 2012.
- Wattercutter, Angela (January 6, 2012). "Make Your Own Little Pony (Because the Intenet Needs More Ponies)". Wired. Retrieved January 6, 2012.
- Rutherford, Kevin (April 20, 2012). "Behind the Music of Pop Culture Smash 'My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic'". Rolling Stone. Retrieved April 20, 2012.
- Orsini, Lauren Rae (April 21, 2012). "For brony musicians, 'Friendship Is Magic' serves as muse". The Daily Dot. Retrieved April 21, 2012.
- Baker-Whitelaw, Gavia (January 17, 2014). "This app is the iTunes of brony music". Daily Dot. Retrieved January 17, 2014.
- Turner, James (March 20, 2012). "Is TV paying too much attention to fans?". The Christian Science Monitor. Retrieved March 20, 2012.
- Faust, Lauren (May 8, 2011). "THANK YOU!!!". deviantArt. Retrieved August 2, 2011.
- Collins, Dave (July 1, 2012). "Guys Who Like My Little Pony Gather for 'BronyCon'". Associated Press. Retrieved July 1, 2012.
- Wilson, Melody (July 3, 2012). "Brony Love: Lauren Faust, Creator of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, Live from Bronycon!". Bitch. Retrieved July 3, 2012.
- Hillier, Brenna (March 3, 2013). "My Little Pony creator to help resurrect Fighting is Magic game". VG247. Retrieved March 3, 2013.
- Keeble, Ellen (May 21, 2012). "Voicing pony magic". Calgary Sun. Archived from the original on October 21, 2012. Retrieved May 21, 2012.
- Marchand, Francois (May 11, 2012). "Vancouver pop-rock band Hey Ocean! plays it their way". The Vancouver Sun. Archived from the original on June 14, 2012. Retrieved October 11, 2013.
- Stewart, Alasdair (October 2, 2012). "Star Trek's John de Lancie Interviewed". SFX. Retrieved October 2, 2012.
- "BronyCon: The Documentary". Kickstarter. Retrieved May 21, 2012.
- Jules (May 30, 2012). "Kickstart BronyCon: The Documentary". Wired. Retrieved May 30, 2012.
- Connelly, Brendon (June 12, 2012). "Bronies Make My Little Pony Convention Film The Second Most Funded In The History Of Kickstarter". Bleeding Cool. Retrieved June 12, 2012.
- Michael Brockhoff (July 7, 2012). "Documentary Update & Release Information". Kickstarter. Retrieved October 11, 2016.
- Wattercutter, Angela (August 21, 2013). "Our Enduring Fascination With Bronies Continues With Yet Another Documentary". Wired. Retrieved August 21, 2013.
- Cox, Gordon (March 6, 2014). "Joss Whedon, Courteney Cox, Katie Holmes, 'Zombeavers' and Bronies Round Out the 2014 Tribeca Film Festival Slate". Variety. Retrieved March 6, 2014.
- Romano, Aja (May 15, 2013). "Why 'My Little Pony' fandom is freaking out over 'Equestria Girls'". The Daily Dot. Retrieved May 30, 2013.
- Griffiths, Daniel Nye (September 27, 2011). "Friendship is Massive – Ponies, Internet phenomena and crossover audiences". Daniel Nye Griffiths. Retrieved January 19, 2012.
- Busis, Hillary (April 13, 2012). "Saddle up: You're invited to a 'My Little Pony' royal wedding – EXCLUSIVE". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved April 16, 2012.
- Sims, Chris (July 15, 2012). "'We Love The Bronies': The Cast And Writer Of 'My Little Pony' On MLP And Its Fans [SDCC]". Comics Alliance. Archived from the original on July 18, 2012. Retrieved July 18, 2012.
- Kreoss (May 7, 2011). "And so it ends..." DeviantArt. Retrieved June 5, 2012.
- Alberghetti, Sabrina (January 31, 2012). "Derpy Backlash?". DeviantArt. Retrieved January 31, 2012.
- Chen, Adrien (February 28, 2012). "Bronies Furious After Minor My Little Pony Character Is Changed to Seem Less Mentally Disabled". Gawker. Archived from the original on March 1, 2012. Retrieved February 28, 2012.
- Alvarez, David (January 18, 2014). "My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic 'Rainbow Falls' Review". Unleash the Fanboy. Retrieved January 18, 2014.
- Miller, Jim (January 18, 2014). "Jim Miller on Derpy". Twitter. Retrieved January 18, 2014.
- Vogel, Mike (January 18, 2014). "Mike Vogel on Derpy". Twitter. Retrieved February 4, 2014.
- Matheson, Whitney (May 30, 2012). "Exclusive: Preview the 2012 Special Edition My Little Pony". USA Today. Retrieved May 30, 2012.
- "Sethisto" (December 5, 2010). "Poll Results: What is the DJ Pony's Name?". Equestria Daily. Retrieved October 7, 2011.
- Ohanesian, Liz (July 13, 2012). "San Diego Comic-Con 2012: Hasbro Listens to Fans with New, Exclusive Toys". LA Weekly. Retrieved July 13, 2012.
- Truitt, Brian (June 5, 2013). "Hasbro Comic-Con exclusives star Marvel, 'Jem', 'Pony'". USA Today. Retrieved June 5, 2013.
- "10 Awesome Examples of Doctor Who's Cultural Influence". TV Guide. November 22, 2013. Archived from the original on December 3, 2013. Retrieved November 22, 2013.
- Schenkel, Katie (January 28, 2012). "Harold Hill comes to My Little Pony". cliqueclack.com. Retrieved January 31, 2012.
- Alberghetti, Sabrina (January 30, 2012). "Comment on *Sibsy's profile". DeviantArt. Retrieved January 31, 2012.
- Johnson, Rich (November 8, 2012). "My Little Pony #2 Gets A Doctor Whooves Cover From Midtown Comics". Bleeding Cool News. Retrieved November 10, 2012.
- My Little Pony: The Elements of Harmony: Friendship is Magic: Official Guidebook. Little, Brown and Company. p. 30. ISBN 9780316247542.
- Burnett, Colin (2013). "Chapter 7 : Participation is Magic". In Gray, Jonathan; Johnson, Derek (eds.). A Companion to Media Authorship. John Wiley & Sons. ISBN 978-0470670965.
- Reiher, Andrea (June 13, 2015). "Bronies celebrate 'My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic's' 100th episode". Zap2It. Retrieved August 15, 2015.
- Griffiths, Daniel Nye (August 15, 2011). "Colt Success". Wired UK. Retrieved October 10, 2011.
- Daniels, Hunter (July 15, 2012). "Comic-Con: Hasbro Studios Head Stephen Davis Talks the Brony Movement, Transformers, Stretch Armstrong, Battleship and More". Collider.com. Retrieved July 15, 2012.
- Wallace, Lewis (July 6, 2011). "Marvel's Sentinel Faces My Little Pony at Comic-Con". Wired. Retrieved July 8, 2011.
- Matheson, Whitney (June 28, 2011). "Exclusive: See Hasbro's Comic-Con My Little Pony". USA Today. Retrieved July 10, 2011.
- Harris, Elizabeth (July 20, 2014). "Hasbro to Collaborate With 3-D Printing Company to Sell Artwork". New York Times. Retrieved July 20, 2014.
- Wagstaff, Ken (July 26, 2014). "Brony? 'Star Wars' Fan? 3-D Printing Can Make a Toy For You". NBC News. Retrieved July 26, 2014.
- Alt, Eric (July 21, 2014). "Bronies, Little Girls Rejoice: 3-D Pony Printing is Now Legal". Fast Company. Retrieved July 21, 2014.
- Garcia, Megan (March 28, 2015). "How To Keep 3D Printing Revolutionary". Time. Retrieved March 28, 2015.
- Stone, Michael (June 13, 2012). "Fashion's a Factor at the Licensing Expo". Advertising Age. Retrieved June 15, 2012.
- White, Martha C. (April 1, 2013). "Hasbro aims for winner's circle as Build-A-Bear adds My Little Ponies to its stable". NBC Today. Retrieved April 1, 2013.
- Dewey, Caitlin (April 23, 2014). "Don't laugh, but bronies may be propping up one of America's favorite companies". The Washington Post. Retrieved April 23, 2014.
- Matthews, Anne (May 15, 2012). "The 10 Nerdiest Easter Eggs in My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic". Topless Robot. Retrieved June 5, 2012.
- Watercutter, Angela (July 8, 2011). "My Little Pony Ad Parodies 'There's an App for That'". Wired. Retrieved July 8, 2011.
- Notopoulos, Katie (December 30, 2011). "Hasbro Crushes Dreams of Grown Men Who Love My Little Pony". Gawker. Archived from the original on February 19, 2012. Retrieved February 29, 2012.
- Good, Owen (December 8, 2012). "Bronies Shut Down Their My Little Pony MMO, Blaming Copyright Law". Kotaku. Retrieved December 9, 2012.
- Wallenstein, Andrew (July 26, 2011). "Brands frown on fair use". Variety. Retrieved July 26, 2011.
- Marsden, Rhodri (August 9, 2011). "Cyberclinic: Copyright sharks don't need to bite the parodies". The Independent. London. Retrieved August 9, 2011.
- Fahey, Mike (February 8, 2013). "Hasbro Lawyers Stable My Little Pony: Fighting is Magic Fan Project". Kotaku. Retrieved February 8, 2013.
- Renaud, Jeffrey (November 28, 2012). "'My Little Pony' writer Katie Cook declares 'Friendship is Magic'". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved November 28, 2012.
- Johnston, Rich (October 11, 2012). "My Little Pony #1 Sells Over 90,000 Copies". Bleeding Cool. Retrieved October 12, 2012.
- IDW's 'My Little Pony' Comic Becomes Best Selling in Company's History. . January 11, 2013. Retrieved January 13, 2013.
- Johnson, Rich (November 7, 2012). "My Little Pony #1 Cracks The 100,000 Barrier For First Print, Goes To Second Print". Bleeding Cool News. Retrieved November 8, 2012.
- O'Leary, Shannon (April 12, 2013). "'My Little Pony' Leads Kids Comics Charge". Publishers Weekly. Retrieved April 12, 2013.
- Menyes, Carolyn (June 9, 2015). "'DJPON3 Presents My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic Remixed' Album Preview & Tracklist [EXCLUSIVE PREMIERE]". Music Times. Retrieved June 9, 2015.
- Bowman, Donna (December 23, 2011). "Beyond the Top 30: other 2011 TV highlights". The A.V. Club. Retrieved December 23, 2011.
- "The Mane Event". Irish Independent. January 20, 2012. Retrieved January 21, 2012.
- Red Eye w/Greg Gutfeld – June 17, 2011 (television production). Fox News Channel. June 17, 2011.
- Pollowitz, Greg (April 30, 2012). "Mamas Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up to be Bronies". National Review Online. Archived from the original on May 1, 2012. Retrieved April 30, 2012.
- Wegner, Adam (August 24, 2012). "Bronies: Why It's Totally Okay for a 20-Something Dude to Love 'My Little Pony'". Zimbio. Retrieved August 25, 2012.
- Orsini, Lauren Rae (October 2, 2012). "Jerry Springer interviews bronies about 'Outrageous Guilty Pleasures'". The Daily Dot. Retrieved October 2, 2012.
- Grisham, Lori (March 18, 2014). "School bans 9-year-old boy's My Little Pony backpack". USA Today. Retrieved March 18, 2014.
- Bowman, John (March 19, 2014). "Bullied boy's My Little Pony bag barred, Bronies #StandWithGrayson". CBC.ca. Retrieved March 19, 2014.
- "NC school tells boy,9, to leave My Little Pony lunch bag at home, report says". Fox News. March 9, 2014. Retrieved March 17, 2014.
- "#StandWithGrayson: Glenn stands in solidarity with a 9-year-old NC student". Glenn Beck. March 17, 2014. Retrieved March 17, 2014.
- Farrow, Ronan (March 18, 2014). "Male 'My Little Pony' fans unite at Bronycon". MSNBC. Retrieved March 18, 2014.
- Volokh, Eugene (March 17, 2014). "Thugs win again — 'My Little Pony' edition". Washington Post. Retrieved March 19, 2014.
- Blake, Casey (March 21, 2014). "School will allow boy to bring My Little Pony backpack". USA Today. Retrieved March 21, 2014.
- Angel, Rebecca (October 1, 2012). "Adult male My Little Pony fans? Bronies are true rebels". The Guardian. London. Retrieved October 2, 2012.
- "IDEA CHANNEL: The Bronies Phenomenon". Public Broadcasting Service. June 6, 2012. Retrieved June 6, 2012.
"IDEA CHANNEL: Are Bronies Changing the Definition of Masculinity?". Public Broadcasting Service. June 6, 2012. Retrieved October 16, 2014.
- Harris, Randy (May 10, 2012). "How to Talk With Your Kids About Pornography". The New York Times. Retrieved June 26, 2012.
- Woerner, Meredith (June 26, 2012). "Incredibly messed-up short gives My Little Ponys's Pinkie Pie a sex tape". io9. Retrieved June 26, 2012.
- McKinnis, Alexis (July 19, 2012). "Alexis on the sexes: I want a pony". Minneapolis Star-Tribune. Archived from the original on September 18, 2012. Retrieved July 19, 2012.
- Gabbatt, Adam (March 12, 2015). "What a masculinity conference taught me about the state of men". The Guardian. Retrieved March 13, 2015.
- Sherilyn Connelly (2017), Ponyville Confidential: The History and Culture of My Little Pony, 1981-2016, McFarland, ISBN 9781476662091
- missapplessoda (August 2013). "Bonnie Zacherle Q&A at My Little Pony Fair 2013". Archived from the original on August 27, 2016. Retrieved October 11, 2016.
My original concept, this one, it was supposed to be a preschool toy for boys and girls. It doesn't really bother me that little boys enjoy it and I think they should; I mean, why not? But anyway I do think that the cartoon show is probably geared towards girls and their parents so I don't have a problem with it.
- Coscarelli, Joe (November 4, 2011). "4Chan-Based 'Bronies' Continue Their Media Takeover". New York. Retrieved November 4, 2011.
- Searching for Mr. Right – Mitt Romney & Ohio's Rob Portman. Viacom. April 18, 2012. Retrieved December 3, 2012.
- Burnett, Erin (July 6, 2012). "My Little Pony meets the Bronies". CNN. Retrieved July 12, 2012.
- Burnett, Erin (July 9, 2012). "Thank you Bronies!". CNN. Retrieved July 12, 2012.
- Gibson, Megan (June 27, 2011). "Guess Who's A Fan? Former President Bill Clinton is a 'Brony'". Time. Retrieved June 27, 2011.
- Saenz, Arlette (June 25, 2011). "President Bill Clinton Plays 'Not My Job' on Radio Quiz Show". ABC. Retrieved June 27, 2011.
- "Cleveland Fantasy Con". Hot In Cleveland. Season 4. Episode 406. January 2, 2013. TV Land. Archived from the original on January 4, 2014. Retrieved January 2, 2013.
- Barrett, Grant (January 1, 2012). "Which Words Will Live On?". The New York Times. Retrieved January 1, 2012.
- Carbone, Nick (December 8, 2011). "The Top 10 Everything of 2011". Time. Retrieved December 8, 2011.
- Hubbard, Amy (December 8, 2011). "Rebecca Black, planking, My Little Pony: Best memes of 2011". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved December 8, 2011.
- Bergen, Jennifer (December 14, 2011). "Memes Every Techie Should Know". PC Magazine. Retrieved December 15, 2011.
- "My Little War Horse / Tonight Show With Jay Lion-O". Mad. Season 2. Episode 45. February 13, 2012.
- Perlman, Jake (April 12, 2014). "'Bob's Burgers': Undercover horse dad to the rescue! – EXCLUSIVE VIDEO". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved April 12, 2014.
- Funk, John (May 17, 2012). "My Little Diablo: The Secret Level Is Magic". The Escapist. Retrieved May 17, 2012.
- Fahey, Mike (October 2, 2012). "Just When You Thought Snuggle Truck Couldn't Get Any Cuddlier, Enter Brony Mode". Kotaku. Retrieved October 2, 2012.
- O'Conner, Alice (October 9, 2012). "Borderlands 2 Mechromancer DLC arrives today". Shacknews. Retrieved October 9, 2012.
- Ohanesian, Liz (October 6, 2014). "How Bronies: The Musical Came to Be". LA Weekly. Retrieved October 7, 2014.
- "'My Little Pony' Loved By Young Girls, 'Bronies'". ABC News. February 26, 2015. Retrieved February 26, 2015.
- Philip Banse (December 15, 2011). "Ponypause bei den Piraten" (in German). Deutschlandradio. Retrieved December 23, 2011.
- "'Anonymous' hackt SPÖ-Homepage" ['Anonymous' hacks SPÖ homepage]. Kurier (in German). July 2, 2011. Archived from the original on July 3, 2011. Retrieved June 18, 2012.
- "Anonymous kapert WKR-Webseite". Kurier (in German). May 9, 2012. Retrieved May 22, 2012.
- Zetter, Kim (March 9, 2012). "Teen Exploits Three Zero-Day Vulns for $60K Win in Google Chrome Hack Contest". Wired. Retrieved March 9, 2012.
- Goodin, Dan (October 10, 2012). "Google Chrome exploit fetches 'Pinkie Pie' $60,000 hacking prize". Ars Technica. Retrieved October 10, 2012.
- Tung, Liam. "Patch ready for newly-discovered Linux kernel flaw". zdnet.com. Retrieved June 7, 2014.
- O'Brien, Terrence (May 17, 2013). "Hangouts Easter Eggs put dinos and ponies in your chat". Engadget. Retrieved May 17, 2013.
- Lardinoid, Frederic (August 10, 2013). "YouTube's Geek Week Easter Eggs Celebrate Missile Command, Star Trek And Bronies". TechCrunch. Retrieved August 12, 2013.
- "Corrections: December 30". The New York Times. December 30, 2011. Retrieved January 10, 2012.
- Dzieza, Josh (January 9, 2012). "Best New York Times Corrections Ever: Twilight Sparkle, Orcs & More". The Daily Beast. Retrieved January 10, 2012.
- Beschizza, Rob (January 5, 2012). "The best New York Times correction ever". Boing Boing. Retrieved January 10, 2012.
- Silverman, Craig (January 13, 2012). "My Little Pony error in N.Y. Times sets online world abuzz". Toronto Star. Retrieved January 14, 2012.
- Stoeffel, Kat (December 29, 2011). "A Brony Correction in The New York Times". The New York Observer. Retrieved January 10, 2012.
- Lisheron, Mark (February – March 2012). "Romenesko Roars Back". American Journalism Review. Retrieved February 23, 2012.
- Wemple, Eric (June 23, 2015). "NYT public editor: Failure to check resulted in 'My Little Pony' embarrassment". Washington Post. Retrieved June 23, 2015.
- W.K., Andrew (August 28, 2012). "Pony Up". Paper. Archived from the original on September 8, 2012. Retrieved September 6, 2012.
- Soloman, Dan (June 13, 2012). "Andrew WK Outlines His Love for My Little Pony". MTV Hive. MTV. Retrieved June 13, 2012.
- Grow, Kory (June 13, 2012). "Andrew W.K. Is a Brony, and He's Speaking at a My Little Pony Convention". Spin. Retrieved June 13, 2012.
- Rutherford, Kevin (September 29, 2012). "Andrew W.K. Feels the Love at 'My Little Pony' Convention". Rolling Stone. Retrieved September 29, 2012.
- Beggs, Alex (May 29, 2014). "Lena Hall on Bronies, Fake Man Parts, and Playing Neil Patrick Harris's Husband in Hedwig and the Angry Inch". Vanity Fair. Archived from the original on July 5, 2014. Retrieved June 9, 2014.
- Moraski, Lauren (June 9, 2014). "Tony Awards 2014 top moments and highlights". CBS News. Retrieved June 9, 2014.
- "Lena Hall's Two Big Influences — Marlon Brando and "My Little Pony"?". Playbill. June 11, 2014. Archived from the original on June 14, 2014. Retrieved June 11, 2014.
- Hall, Lena (October 27, 2014). "Lena Hall recording Season 5 episode". Twitter. (Self-published). Retrieved October 27, 2014.
- Hall, Lena (December 2, 2014). "Lena Hall recording Song". Instagram. (Self-published). Retrieved December 2, 2014.
- "VIDEO: Tony Winner Lena Hall Makes Singing Guest Appearance on MY LITTLE PONY". BroadwayWorld. November 24, 2015. Retrieved November 24, 2015.
- "Lena Hall: Rara Reacts to Rara [MLP Countess Coloratura]". YouTube. Technocolored pon3. November 21, 2015. Retrieved November 21, 2015.
- Ziggler, Dolph (September 7, 2014). "HERE WE GO, BRONIES..." Twitter.
- 2K Tournament of Champions: Xavier Woods 6 March 2015 (wearing a BRONY shirt) "Xavier Woods here, reigning and defending 2K champion. This year at WrestleMania, people are gonna come and try to take my title, take my championship. That cannot be done, you ban't neat me! Brony: don't care, what up? Step up, and get bought!"
- "The New Day "Feel The Power" Authentic T-Shirt".
PRODUCT NO: W10497
- "Superstars and Divas pick Survivor Series dream teams: 2015 edition (page 4)". November 19, 2015.
Woods disappeared in a puff of unicorn magic and the booming note of a trombone.
- Layfield, John. "Ryback & The Usos vs. The New Day: Raw, November 16, 2015".
This is the Unicorn Stampede, is what this is.
- Tedesco, Mike (November 17, 2015). "WWE RAW Results – 11/16/15 (Final Survivor Series hype) – WWE News and Results, RAW and Smackdown Results, TNA News, ROH News".
- Clark, Ryan (November 17, 2015). "WWE RAW Results (11/16) - The Wyatt Family vs, Kane & The Undertaker, & Lots More! - Page 4 of 4 - eWrestlingNews.com".
- "1Wrestling.com – Pro Wrestling's Daily News Source".
- Brodesser-Akner, Taffy (November 10, 2016). "Billy Bob Thornton on Bad Santa 2, Ungrateful Fans, and Why He Won't Direct Anymore". GQ. Retrieved November 10, 2016.
- Harkness, Ryan (November 10, 2016). "Billy Bob Thornton Just Revealed His Inner Brony To The World". Uproxx. Retrieved November 10, 2016.
- "Billy Bob Thornton Is a My Little Pony Fan". Late Night with Seth Meyers. YouTube. November 16, 2016. Retrieved November 16, 2016.
- Terror, Jude (February 3, 2017). "Confirmed Brony William Shatner Confirms Appearance In My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic Season 7". Bleeding Cool. Retrieved May 4, 2017.
- Milligan, Mercedes (March 16, 2017). "'My Little Pony' S7: More Friendship, Magic & Fun Arrives April 15". Animation Magazine. Retrieved May 4, 2017.