Uniform TitleSurfing for punks: the internet and the punk subculture
NameFurgason, Aaron Robert (author), Steiner, Linda (chair), Bratich, Jack (internal member), Pavlik, John (internal member), Jones, Steve (outside member), Rutgers University, Graduate School - New Brunswick,
SubjectCommunication, Information and Library Studies,
Punk culture--New Jersey,
DescriptionThis study examines the influence of the Internet on the punk subculture in New Jersey. Previous research by academics on the effect of the Internet on popular music has centered on the impact of Napster and peer-to-peer networks on the distribution of recordings (Alexander, 2002; Ayres & Williams, 2004; Bishop, 2004; Daniel & Klimis, 1999; Fox, 2004; Mardesich, 1999; & Oberholzer & Strumpf, 2004). However, unexamined is the influence of the Internet on a specific music subculture, punk. This is important because the subculture is occupied mainly by youth engaged with both the Internet and punk music. The Internet's influence on the punk subculture is a particularly important area of study because the Internet alters how participants in the subculture (punk fans, bands and independent labels) communicate with one another, as well as changes the distribution of punk artifacts and information.
Central to this study is the history of the major labels' dominance over the distribution and promotion of punk music, a domination examined via critical political economy theory. The Internet may offer a new outlet that removes the stranglehold of the major label system over punk.
Focus group research with punk members and interviews with punk label personnel and band members suggest that the Internet has made it easier and faster for punk fans, bands, and labels to communicate with one another. However, most of the online communication between punk fans, bands and labels now takes place on social networking sites (MySpace.com), where the central method of communication is one-to-many, instead of one-to-one. Recently, major labels have increasingly made both distribution and promotional deals with MySpace.com (and other social networking sites). These deals offer major label content prominent placement on social networking sites at the expense of independent label recordings. Ultimately, tours by punk bands will continue to play an important role in the promotion and marketing of punk music, as well as offer subculture members the authentic punk experience. Initially, the independent labels utilized the Internet to promote recordings more than major labels, but recently, major labels have begun to embrace the Internet to promote new recordings.
NoteIncludes bibliographical references (p. 289-315).
CollectionGraduate School - New Brunswick Electronic Theses and Dissertations
RightsThe author owns the copyright to this work.