This project aims to identify and analyse consumers’ practices and the development of cultures and markets in the cultural industry using different social media platforms (Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter). The case study focusses on a group of consumers, also known as “fashion bloggers”, interested in promoting the consumption of goods from the local and global fashion industry.
This is a three-year research project called “Cultural Intermediaries in the Digital Age” financed by Chile’s National Science Commission (Fondecyt N° 11150095) that aims to understand how cultures and economies are generated in the cultural industry by analysing consumers’ practices in social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.
The cultural industries operate as analytical cases in which a series of transformations and expansions on cultural and economic activities have occurred, particularly through the role that consumers and digital technologies play in the production, circulation and consumption of goods (CNCA 2014; Hersmondhalgh 2010). Specifically, this project looks at the everyday practices of these consumers as “cultural intermediaries” (Bourdieu 1984) of the goods that they promote in their digital platforms (Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and Twitter) and as key actors for the reproduction of economies of consumption. Not only do, they act as “shapers of taste and the inculcators of new consumerist dispositions” (Nixon and Du Gay 2002: 497), they also add value to goods and services, creating markets through the qualification and promotion of the properties of these goods (Smith Maguire and Matthews 2014).