UNI SP4 Study Period 4 2014

NET102 I Want My MP3

Internet Studies 102 : The Internet and Everyday Life

Topic 1.1: Music: I Want My MP3

Since the 1990s, the development of digitalisation, the ubiquity of MP3 players, P2P and torrent transfer protocols, social networking services centred on music, video-sharing sites, Internet radio and multimedia and Internet-capable mobile phones have all contributed to a richly textured musical landscape. Our ultimate focus here is not upon the technological developments. What is most interesting for us are the meanings being exchanged with the music, the way people’s identities may be coupled together with their music tastes and experiences, and the formation of taste communities. As Laughey, in your reading, describes, music has long been part of day to day living, whether encountered in restaurants, shops, live events, or played on people’s MP3 player, part of a soundtrack to a film or in a music video. Music has also traditionally made up a large portion of many people’s identity, both in terms of self and to others.

What has the Internet added to the mix, what does the Internet ‘do’ for music and music consumers and producers?

What you need to do to learn about this topic:


Laughey, D. (2007). Music Media in Young People’s Everyday Lives. In Music, Sound and Multimedia: From the Live to the Virtual (pp. 172-187). Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. In E-Reserve. How is music interlaced with our everyday lives in general? What has been the impact of the Internet in the way music is used by young people privately and publicly (and the way this intermingles)?


Open up an account with a music discovery and streaming service like Pandora, Last.fm, or Grooveshark. Use their tools for discovering new music and other listeners with similar tastes and build upon your profile there. If you have an mp3 player, try to download playlists and music from the service. In your learning portfolio, include a link to your profile and a review of the service. For those of you who already have such a profile, describe your profile and how you use it in your everyday life and the role played by the Internet on your music listening.


What impact has the Internet had on the way music is consumed, discovered and distributed these days?

Further Material for Essay

If you choose this topic for your essay, in addition to the above, you will also need to read:

Beer, D. (2008). Making friends with Jarvis Cocker: Music culture in the context of web2.0. Cultural Sociology, 2(2), 222 - 241. http://instruct.uwo.ca/mit/3771-001/MakingFriendsWithJarvisCocker_MusicCultureAndWeb20.pdf

Brown, S. C. (2011). Artist Autonomy in a digital era: The case of Nine Inch Nails. Empirical Musicology Review, 6(4). http://kb.osu.edu/dspace/bitstream/handle/1811/52949/EMR000124a-Brown.pdf?sequence=1

Bull. M. (2005). No dead air! The iPod and the culture of mobile listening. Leisure Studies, 24(4), 343 - 355. http://asounder.org/resources/bull_nodeadair.pdf

Each of these six topics covered in Module 1 has a particular question for the Questions and Answers assignment, you will need to complete these questions and then submit the best three of them as part of your assignment. You may also choose this topic for your essay. Your participation in discussions and activities for this, and the other topics, contribute towards the body of work that you will select from for the Portfolio. Also, review the material in this topic for your final assignment, particularly paying attention to the role played by the Internet in terms of economics, power, identity, community, time and space (Module 2).

NEXT: Topic 1.2: Games: At Work, No One Knows I’m a Wizard»