While studying Bourdieu and Smythe today, I encountered a new concept — audience commodification. We’re all made well aware of the astronomical costs incurred to advertise during the Super Bowl, but what are advertisers actually buying with their advertising expenditures?
As hard-nosed businessmen they are not paying for advertising for nothing, nor for altruism. What they buy are the services of audiences with predictable specifications which will pay attention in predictable numbers and at particular times to particular means of communication in particular areas. As collectives these audiences are commodities.
The class landed on hipster culture and quickly began dismantling it. Now, I’m not one to jump on board the hipster hate wagon. At this point it’s already becoming passe to do so in my opinion. Maybe that’s my inner-hipster coming out. But I remember reading this article in Adbusters a while back and I thought I’d share it again.
It’s well worth the read.