Call for Papers

A free academic conference, 20–21 May 2022
Hybrid format hosted by Department of Music, University College Cork, Ireland
Keywords: popular music, internet, culture, communities, social media

Over the last few years, music researchers have paid increased attention to the internet and its effects on cultural life. For example, edited collections on digital culture,1Cook, Nicholas, Monique M. Ingalls, and David Trippett, eds. The Cambridge Companion to Music in Digital Culture. Cambridge University Press, 2019. virtuality,2Whiteley, Sheila, and Shara Rambarran, eds. The Oxford Handbook of Music and Virtuality. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016. and social media3Waldron, Janice L., Stephanie Horsley, and Kari K. Veblen, eds. The Oxford Handbook of Social Media and Music Learning. Oxford Handbooks. Oxford, New York: Oxford University Press, 2020. have emerged alongside landmark research projects4Born, Georgina. ‘Music, Digitisation, Mediation: Towards Interdisciplinary Music Studies’. Digital Humanities @ Oxford, 2010. https://digital.humanities.ox.ac.uk/project/music-digitisation-mediation-towards-interdisciplinary-music-studies. … See full note that seek to understand how the internet shapes the cultural production of music. Meanwhile, interdisciplinary inquiry has addressed internet-based cultural practices of popular music, critically examining the tension between creative platform uses and the political economy of an increasingly privatised internet.5Baym, Nancy. Playing to the Crowd: Musicians, Audiences, and the Intimate Work of Connection. New York: New York University Press, 2018. Johansson, Sofia, Ann Werner, Patrik Åker, and Greg Goldenzwaig. Streaming Music: Practices, Media, Cultures. … See full note

Given the intensification of the internet as a site for cultural activities during the COVID-19 pandemic, online popular music communities have recently been transformed and new online practices have emerged. Popular musicians and industry personnel are adapting to a quickly shifting landscape for cultural production and promotion via social media,6Haynes, Jo, and Lee Marshall. ‘Beats and Tweets: Social Media in the Careers of Independent Musicians’. New Media & Society 20, no. 5 (1 May 2018): 1973–93. https://doi.org/10.1177/1461444817711404. while listeners, viewers, and fans share, curate, and comment on music across the globe.7Campos, Raquel. ‘Musicking on Social Media: Imagined Audiences, Momentary Fans and Civic Agency in the Sharing Utopia’. International Association for the Study of Popular Music, Andrew Goodwin Memorial Essay, 2019. … See full note Video and communication platforms have captured the imagination of participants worldwide, with musical and multimodal self-expression broadcast across the social web.8Gaunt, Kyra D. ‘Youtube, Twerking, and You: Context Collapse and the Handheld Copresence of Black Girls and Miley Cyrus’. In Voicing Girlhood in Popular Music, edited by Jacqueline Warwick and Allison Adrian, 208–32. New York: Routledge, 2016. … See full note These developments, however, are contextualised by profit-driven corporate entities that reframe cultural producers as ‘content creators’ and other participants as consumers, followers, or subscribers. Concerns about personalisation algorithms, surveillance strategies, and data security are escalating in sites of popular music culture. The widespread use of the web in the developed and the developing world has undoubtedly altered everyday cultural practices, although between the poles of technological determinism and cyberutopian narratives of democratisation,9Brusila, Johannes, Martin Cloonan, and Kim Ramstedt. ‘Music, Digitalization, and Democracy’. Popular Music and Society 44, no. 5 (11 October 2021): 1–12. https://doi.org/10.1080/03007766.2021.1984018. there is still much detail to be sought.

This conference invites contemporary research into cultural practices of popular music taking place online. The phrase ‘internet musicking’ takes Small’s term10Small, C. Musicking: The Meanings of Performing and Listening. Middletown, Connecticut: Wesleyan University Press, 1998. – and developments of it11Campos Valverde, Raquel. ‘Understanding Musicking on Social Media: Music Sharing, Sociality and Citizenship’. PhD Thesis, London South Bank University, 2019. https://doi.org/10.18744/lsbu.88×09. Hagen, Anja Nylund. ‘Using Music Streaming … See full note – to address all social activities involving music on the internet. The conference is particularly (but not exclusively) interested in spotlighting previously undocumented uses and experiences of music online. It is designed to generate discussion, identify major issues, and develop a diverse network of scholars to be formalised in subsequent activities and events. We invite submissions on topics that include, but are not limited to:

  • social media musicking: sharing, curation, and platform interactions
  • viral new media and musical memes
  • music and internet socialities: (imagined) communities of practice, networked individualism, and online music sub/countercultures 
  • genres of popular music and their online mediations
  • non-musical expressions of online popular music cultures, such as dance and games
  • ‘the I in Internet’: popular music and identity, otherness, queering practices, and resistance
  • online music and cultural economies: datification, platformization, surveillance, and attention
  • music and cultural industry agents in the context of Big Tech
  • global participation in music culture, digital divides, and issues of internet access

The conference will also celebrate the publication of a special issue of Global Hip Hop Studies, ‘It’s Where You’re @: Hip-Hop and the Internet’, edited by Raquel Campos Valverde and Steven Gamble.

Logistics

The conference language is English. The conference will run in a hybrid format, ensuring online access to presentations. In-person activity (subject to the developing situation of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic) will be hosted in the Ó Riada Hall, Department of Music, University College Cork. Delegates will be surveyed regarding their preferences for online or in-person participation.

The conference especially seeks presenters from under-represented groups, and encourages submissions from postgraduate students, early career researchers, and specialists without traditional academic posts. The conference is committed to ensuring a diversity of views, following (as closely as possible) the REACH Inclusive Conference Guide. All participants will be asked to agree with a code of conduct to support an inclusive attitude and respectful behaviour towards all delegates.

All submissions can be made here. This form will ask you to include basic personal information, submission format, title, abstract (250 words), and bio (100 words). The deadline for submissions is 20 December 2021.

The submissions will be reviewed by the organising committee and presenters will be notified of the outcome in mid-January. 

If you have any queries, please contact the conference organisers here. The conference is funded by the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) grant Digital Flows. It is also sponsored by Fáilte Ireland’s Meet In Ireland initiative. The organising committee is Raquel Campos Valverde (King’s College London), Steven Gamble (University College Cork), and Jason Ng (University College Cork).

References

References
1 Cook, Nicholas, Monique M. Ingalls, and David Trippett, eds. The Cambridge Companion to Music in Digital Culture. Cambridge University Press, 2019.
2 Whiteley, Sheila, and Shara Rambarran, eds. The Oxford Handbook of Music and Virtuality. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016.
3 Waldron, Janice L., Stephanie Horsley, and Kari K. Veblen, eds. The Oxford Handbook of Social Media and Music Learning. Oxford Handbooks. Oxford, New York: Oxford University Press, 2020.
4 Born, Georgina. ‘Music, Digitisation, Mediation: Towards Interdisciplinary Music Studies’. Digital Humanities @ Oxford, 2010. https://digital.humanities.ox.ac.uk/project/music-digitisation-mediation-towards-interdisciplinary-music-studies. Haworth, Christopher. ‘Music and the Internet: Towards a Digital Sociology of Music’. University of Birmingham, 2021. https://www.birmingham.ac.uk/research/lcahm/projects/music-and-the-internet.aspx. Hesmondhalgh, David. ‘MUSICSTREAM – Music Culture in the Age of Streaming’. University of Leeds School of Media and Communication, 2021. https://ahc.leeds.ac.uk/media/news/article/1826/musicstream-music-culture-in-the-age-of-streaming. Rollefson, J. Griffith. ‘CIPHER: Hip Hop Interpellation (Le Conseil International Pour Hip Hop et Recherche / The International Council for Hip Hop Studies)’. European Commission, 2019. https://cordis.europa.eu/project/id/819143.
5 Baym, Nancy. Playing to the Crowd: Musicians, Audiences, and the Intimate Work of Connection. New York: New York University Press, 2018. Johansson, Sofia, Ann Werner, Patrik Åker, and Greg Goldenzwaig. Streaming Music: Practices, Media, Cultures. London: Routledge, 2017. Lingel, Jessa. Digital Countercultures and the Struggle for Community. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2017.
6 Haynes, Jo, and Lee Marshall. ‘Beats and Tweets: Social Media in the Careers of Independent Musicians’. New Media & Society 20, no. 5 (1 May 2018): 1973–93. https://doi.org/10.1177/1461444817711404.
7 Campos, Raquel. ‘Musicking on Social Media: Imagined Audiences, Momentary Fans and Civic Agency in the Sharing Utopia’. International Association for the Study of Popular Music, Andrew Goodwin Memorial Essay, 2019. https://www.iaspm.org.uk/iaspm/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/campos_goodwin_essay.pdf.
8 Gaunt, Kyra D. ‘Youtube, Twerking, and You: Context Collapse and the Handheld Copresence of Black Girls and Miley Cyrus’. In Voicing Girlhood in Popular Music, edited by Jacqueline Warwick and Allison Adrian, 208–32. New York: Routledge, 2016. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315689593.
9 Brusila, Johannes, Martin Cloonan, and Kim Ramstedt. ‘Music, Digitalization, and Democracy’. Popular Music and Society 44, no. 5 (11 October 2021): 1–12. https://doi.org/10.1080/03007766.2021.1984018.
10 Small, C. Musicking: The Meanings of Performing and Listening. Middletown, Connecticut: Wesleyan University Press, 1998.
11 Campos Valverde, Raquel. ‘Understanding Musicking on Social Media: Music Sharing, Sociality and Citizenship’. PhD Thesis, London South Bank University, 2019. https://doi.org/10.18744/lsbu.88×09. Hagen, Anja Nylund. ‘Using Music Streaming Services: Practices, Experiences and the Lifeword of Musicking’. PhD Thesis, University of Oslo, 2015. https://www.hf.uio.no/imv/forskning/prosjekter/skyogscene/publikasjoner/hagen2015.pdf. Harper, Paula Clare. ‘Unmute This: Circulation, Sociality, and Sound in Viral Media’. PhD Thesis, Columbia University, 2019. https://doi.org/10.7916/d8-6rte-j311.