Introduction to Popular Culture Studies

Archive for September, 2015

Saved by Sammitches’

Posted by wkumom15 on September 30, 2015

The article Chuck vs Leno was a very interesting read. It really says a lot about how important fans can be to a show like Chuck. I do wonder though, if the show were discontinued anyway, would those fans start an anti-Subway campaign? I can just imagine them crowding the streets with torches and picket signs. Seriously though, fans don’t play about their shows. I was kind of saddened when Dexter ended, but to be honest the show went downhill after Rita was killed.

This Leno bit is the really sad part. A big corporation like NBC airs a show they know sucks, to save money. Fill the slot with garbage tv, I mean let’s face it, the guy isn’t even funny. The show was basically an hour long advertisement for all the product placement. NBC did prove the point that ratings don’t always equal money. In doing so, they had a lot of pissed off viewers. If they did that just to prove a point that’s low. If they did it just to make money, which I’m thinking is the case, that is the lowest.

The fans of Chuck showed that there is more to television than ratings and money. Fans are like a community. They come together and do things like buy sandwiches for the greater good. It really was a smart idea, for those who don’t have time, as the ad said, to write letters. Just go buy a sandwich. You eat, and maybe save your favorite television show. Everybody wins!


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About yesterday…

Posted by bperry210 on September 30, 2015

First of all, I would like to say that yesterday was fun when 9:35 hit and we actually got to meet Mr. Ford face to face. Me and a couple of our classmates led the group discussion and as we did that I learned some things along with the comments and questions we were bringing to the table. It made me really think how the term piracy is losing its meaning in the world we live in today. It is not as intimidating anymore because it’s just like… “oh okay, for free? whenever I want? okay that’s cool, I’m down.” The risks and consequences of it are not feared because it’s not even heavily stressed or enforced like it should be to prevent it. We do not speak up or try to self enforce because we know we are going to be watching and using the material afterwards anyway. There used to be a website called movietube where you could watch new movies that just came out in theaters online for free because of someone who “bootlegged” it. It wasn’t the best quality but you get what you pay for…in this case there was no payment. It was definitely a lot cheaper than a $10- $14 movie at the cinemas. The same goes for the old website to download music…LimeWire. It is just another cheaper and more convenient way to get access to things in a world now where we are all constantly on the move and on our smart phone.

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Fans are Everything

Posted by alexiswalsh on September 29, 2015

Reading Chapter 3 really made me realize just how important fans are to celebrities, shows, movies, etc. Without a fan base celebrities really could not be as popular as they are.

Take a celebrity such as Justin Bieber, he started out as a young artist out of Canada. He made YouTube videos just for the fun of it but soon people started noticing his talent and began talking about him. Finally after all the talk, Scooter Braun who is his manager found him and signed him. With being so young he automatically was the heart throb of young girls to even teenage girls. This particular group was Justin’s fan base, they like to call themselves “Beliebers.” Without these fans buying his songs off iTunes, buying his albums, buying tshirts with him on it, buying posters, etc. he would not have become as popular as he is. Nowadays a lot of singers or groups like to name their fanbase, it gives their fans feel like they a part of something big. Some popular one include, “One Directioners” or “Swifties” or “Wayniacs” the list goes on and on. In my opinion making your fans feel special will make them love the singer, actor whoever it may be even more.

While reading I thought of how important these fans are because if they did not purchase songs or apparel then where would these celebrities be getting their paychecks from? Actors and actresses need fans so they get asked to participate in more and more shows or movies. Take someone like Brad Pitt, he’s in several movies and play tons of different roles. He would not get those opportunities more than likely if he did not have the fans that he did.

All in all, fans make the world go ’round and I think everyone should honestly be a fan of something, makes listening to music or watching a show or movie more fun!

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Watch now or add to queue? 3/29/15

Posted by tevanmorton on September 29, 2015

Piracy in regards to television programming is an interesting subject for of reasons. First, compared to piracy with movies; where money is is being lost due to people not going out to the theater to buy tickets, or with music piracy; where money is lost due through record and track purchases. Piracy of t.v. shows is more so the result of the way we watch tv today. The chapter discusses the two ways viewers engage with their t.v. programming. One way is through watching your shows in real time, catching it when it debuts at a specific time, the other is the more modern way of watching your shows on your own time. This is where tv piracy comes into play. As we are in the awkward stages where the way we consume our t.v. shows and some people are making the transition to rely on internet streaming as their primary source of how they watch tv (through Netflix, Hulu, Hbo Go, etc.) and still may want to view a show that isn’t on a service they are paying for. While downloading a tv episode illegally may still sound bad, the main thing that is being stolen is the advertisers time to sell their products to you. Like movies or music where your money direct goes to what you are purchasing. In many cases the illegal downloading of a show can still very well show companies the success of their program. However, there is still many attempts to bring audiences back around to watching tv shows when the channels want you to watch them by gimmicks like live tweeting or post shows to make your viewing feel more like a spectacle or an event; what works best during big sporting events and award shows is now given to weekly television shows to give the impression that this is a moment you don’t want to miss out on. It is an interesting moment in the format of television programming right now as they are trying to find the balance between the old format and the new. 

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Fan Persuasion

Posted by danielphillips15 on September 29, 2015

That was a pretty interesting article about Chuck fans buying Subway sandwiches to get their favorite show back on the air. Since Subway was a big sponsor and was put in the spotlight, it seemed like they almost had to save the show or else they would look bad to their customers. I would say that is a perfect example of having valuable fans. The other article, “Valuing Fans” took a look at what it means to have engaged fans verses fans that are just there and the economic difference between the two. Take a look at youtube for example. The economic success of any video can often be tied to the amount of views that it has, it doesn’t really matter if a person thumbs down the video or commented negatively. With enough internet traffic, money can be made. When fans are engaging, the best results lie in endorsements and recommendation to others to become fans   (spreadability) as well. While instances like Chuck where fans fought for the show are very uncommon, I think engaged fans are always awesome to have and I try to be one my self of the things in life I love.

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Big Ass Fans™

Posted by fetphonehome on September 29, 2015

Why do people love to love things? Or love to hate them? The craziest among these fans are probably Star Wars fans, Juggalos, and Sports Fans… Let’s examine the insanity


A Mostly friendly group of somewhat nerdy men and women. They usually pass this love down to their children and spend insane amounts of money on prop replicas, conventions, and extreme displays of love varying from “I drive on the dark side” bumper stickers to Full Scale Replicas of a Pod Racer


A mostly lower class band of believers of the “Insane Clown Posse.” They have all of the same passion as Star Wars fans but tend to be a little less… cordial. They have the reputation of being almost ganglike in terms of violence and debauchery…


Probably the most insane of all… Some aren’t even fans of just a team, but a fan of a sport, they guys and gals that call into KSR and just debate the game of basketball simply because they love basketball. Then there are these guys… they have all the friendliness of the Star Wars fans and the dabauchery of the Juggalos… These people are insane, fervent, and scientifically addicted.

– Georgia football fan:

– UK Fans React to Final Four loss: 

WARNING: THIS IS DEFINITELY NSFW   Hitler Reacts to Kentucky Loss: 

– Alabama fans React to Auburn loss: 

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Whatever Pop Culture Revolution this is… It has my full support.

Posted by fetphonehome on September 29, 2015

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Is it really Piracy?

Posted by tamrad19 on September 29, 2015

Netflix streaming movies and whole seasons of shows is really beneficial to me. When I’m interested in a  TV show and want to watch the whole season? Didn’t make it to theaters to watch a movie? I know I can always depend on good old Netflix or HULU, it may have bad movies that could’ve been home-made BUT if you dig deep enough there is gold you can find on there. Is it really piracy if you’re PAYING to watch these shows on these programs that stream the movies?

In my opinion, no one really has value of media engagement. It’s 2015, bootleg movies are being sold and made every day. Everyone is looking for a free site or app that streams free music downloads. Also, TV viewers pay $8-9 a month so they can have a program (Netflix or HULU). NO ONE EVER looks at it as piracy, because we’ve all grown so very comfortable in doing I because we know we can get away with it.

The only people who really take piracy to heart are the people behind making a show or music. Due to the fact that they are the ones losing money for piracy, not I or anyone else for that matter. Although, Im pretty sure they may download media that isn’t free, who hasn’t? It’s becoming an everyday thing, without any consequences because it such a minor crime in my opinion. Maybe if they were to enforce piracy laws, numbers may be reduced. In the meantime, it’s just going to keep happening

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Curation Project

Posted by lydbowlds on September 29, 2015

Recently this class has been discussing a lot about fan bases and how marketing companies are trying (and sometimes failing) to stay on top of trends and keep their content relevant to the public. I’m very interested in marketing and public relations so I assume that it would be easy for me to know what is the most effective way to make sure the majority of people see what I am trying to promote. But then again I am currently around the same age as the people I would be trying to spread media too and most marketing companies or PR managers are a little bit older and might just be having a hard time grasping new concepts or “getting with the times” as the world and the internet move so quickly these days.

I personally feel that the way to learn how to be better at something (in this case marketing to the general public) is to look at how others have failed so you know what not to do. It’s very interesting researching these marketing “flops” because they seem so common sense but some marketing manage actually thought it was a good idea. Social media is interesting in that the consumer can often know way better than the producer on what is gonna catch their attention and what is going to stay relevant or become irrelevant (whole companies can become irrelevant with just a little bit of bad PR).

Unlike commercials or print journalism, social posts from Marketing teams are often sent out without any sort of approval process. The results can be awkward to extremely offensive.

One example comes from Twitter, the day of the surfacing of the hotel video footage of Ray Rice punching his wife.  In just 24 hours, there were over 46,000 Tweets using the hashtag #WhyIStayed, and most of them were messages from women explaining what made them stay in abusive relationships. Digiorno’s immediately jumped in and tried to capitalize on this trend which is incredibly insensitive.

Another example of a complete marketing fail comes from Tumblr and I honestly never would’ve thought anything of it until I did some research so this one makes a little more sense on why it was posted but I would still expect to see more of background checks put into a professional clothing company’s posts. Last 4th of July, the clothing company, American Apparel, posted a photo to their Tumblr that they thought was a cool image of fireworks.  On an aesthetic level, it is a cool image, but on a contextual level, it’s tragic and wildly inappropriate.
The photo was no festive fireworks photo at all, it’s actually the Challenger space shuttle disaster that killed seven people in 1986. They eventually took down the image and apologized for the ignorance on what the image represented.
My last example is from a company that truly was trying to interact on social media more personally with their consumers. It was a marketing campaign run by Molson which is a beer company run out of Canada known as Coors here in the USA. The campaign was to get students on campuses around the world to send in their pictures of them partying to see which school is the most fun. “This would provide easy publicity through social media platforms while extending the brand into new target markets.” The result was a lot of pictures sent in of illegal or illicit activities, often from underage students.
as one article I read stated, “the moral of the story is to double and triple check as even the best intentioned marketing message can go horrible off the track if not executed properly.”
(Also not the most relevant to my project but the most interesting article I read while doing my research was: http://grasshopper.com/blog/21-of-the-worst-marketing-flops-follies-faux-pas/. Almost all of the list isn’t current enough to be included in marketing mishaps in the new world of social media but they are “the worst campaign flops of all time.” very interesting to me especially this Calvin Klein commercial (which interestingly enough is very trendy right now) is probably the creepiest thing i’ve ever seen in my life and it ended up being banned! First model is from Kentucky though https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vZVk21Pco-c&feature=player_embedded)

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Like, Comment, Subscribe.

Posted by lowgen11 on September 29, 2015

I realize that all I talk about is YouTube. But that’s something I’m becoming more and more interested in. And the reading this week really got my mind working on the whole fan base piece of the puzzle. 

It’s one thing to be funny, or raunchy, or informative, or opinionated. The special thing, is being able to realize what you’re good at, do it, do it consistently, and develope a target market that will view your content religiously, or at least habitually. 

Fans make or break you in every form of entertainment. You have to come out of the gate strong, get em on the hook, and keep them swimming back for more. That’s what I’m struggling with at this point. 

I’ve mentioned it in previous posts. I’m well educated in matters of pop culture and politics, I have a strong southern background, I came out as gay at an early age, I understand and defend all of my communities, and I think most would agree that I have a pretty good sense of humor. But I cannot, for the life of me, figure out a way to bring that to the YouTube medium in a way that will not only entertain and pull subscribers, but will help others and make me a career. 

It would be really cool to talk to a YouTuber that has some resemblance of success with a channel. 

Maybe one will make a how to video for YouTube stardom… 

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