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Friday, April 9, 2010

Relationship Between Culture Jamming and Advertising

With respect to the second main question on the relationship between culture jamming and advertising, there are more interesting answers to the same. The link between culture jamming and advertising is apparent in the activities of the people nowadays. Culture jamming is an interesting variety of political communication that has developed in retort to the commercial seclusion of public life (Center for Communication and Civic Engagement 1). On the other hand, advertising is a strategy that attracts more clients or consumers of products and services owned by companies. For so many years, the dominant public role has been considered as concerns of a citizen in a given country. But this fact is no longer true nowadays since dominant public role has shifted from citizen to consumer (Center for Communication and Civic Engagement 1). In other words, there is an intimate link between commercial activities and being a participant in various social issues.

According to the Center for Communication and Civic Engagement, participants of culture jamming dispute that civilization, political affairs, and social values have been twisted by drenched commercial environments, from commercial logos on sports amenities, to television substance intended exclusively to convey targeted fanatics to producers and sponsors (Center for Communication and Civic Engagement 1). Numerous community issues and societal voices are pressed to the limits of society by advertisement values and profitable messages, making it complicated to attract the awareness of those existing in the restricted thinking that equals to consumerism. Essentially, culture jamming provides kinds of motivating communication channels that correspond with the branded imagery and icons of buyer culture to make customers conscious of contiguous troubles and varied cultural circumstances that merit their scrutiny. Thus, the role of advertising in culture jamming is quiet relevant in the sense that consumerism is directly linked to it.

The age of YouTube, web media, parody, and postmodern advertising apparently signified the relationship between culture jamming and advertising. In YouTube, videos of different products are being uploaded for the free access of individuals who would decide on what products to buy. It is admitted that millions of people are using YoutTube in order to search for quality products that they could acquire for themselves. The way YouTube videos are presented in the Internet reflects much of the definition of culture jamming. Public awareness of societal issues that are vital to every individual is included in YouTube video sharing.

In the web media, weblogging is the well-known channel of communication for consumers and advertisers meet with respect to the quality and availability of certain products. People who participated in this activity exercises more freedom in expressing their views about social issues in relation to the products that they endorsed. That is the reason that advertisers are willing to pay bloggers linked to the web media in exchange of useful content with a touch of culture jamming for their products to be known to consumers. It also includes parodies which advertisers exploit in order to attract more buyers and consumers for the products they endorsed. For instance, the Nike parody was presented to public through subversive affirmation wherein the branding of Nike campaign was exaggerated (Center for Communication and Civic Engagement 1). As a result, the said parody catapulted various citizen protests because the people were getting concerned of the real issue behind the parody.

Apparently, postmodern advertising are getting synonymous with social awareness. Going back to the way Reebok presented is stance in the market, it used the fall of Nike due to its unethical activities just to promote respect to human rights when in fact the company is also committing human rights violations the same way with Nike. There are instances that the people are lulled by defective advertising techniques that to get their attention. Gone are the days when unpretentious and tiresome advertising processes are being done by marketers, advertisers and product owners or companies.

In connection, culture jamming is not a new movement in the society. Culture jamming is just a refection of the long time opposition to unethical standards of companies and failure of governments to cater the needs of the people (Lasn 415). There are times when the life of a person becomes monotonous and it is more appealing to emerge into a more renewed personality transformation or emulation through the use of some products available in the market. In other words, some people nowadays prefers sudden changes in their lives which points out to the bloated, self-absorbed consumer culture needs. The way advertising strategies were used and how it shaped cultural perspective of individuals is what linked culture jamming and advertising. The philosophy and strategy of culture jams is obvious in the advertisements that we see nowadays through television, radio, and print media. The focus of advertisers is to provide a virtual world for people to emulate and depart from their old personalities without losing their identities through the introduction of various products that makes it all possible like credit cards, extreme sports, spectacular movies, famous clothing brands and other products and services.

Since culture jammers are useful in product endorsements, advertisers utilized their services for making products available to the public scene. There are also instances when advertisers used the techniques of culture jammers to develop a brand for endorsement. The tactic used by advertisers is to shun the American dream and teach the public through their product endorsements that there are more important than being rich which are being spontaneous, authentic, and living well (Lasn 424). The strategy is in line with allowing individuals to express themselves without following old habits and applying novel ideas that are highly personal. For example, advertisers are sending messages to the people that it is cooler to ride a bike than traveling around in an expensive car. The culture shock was made more surprising and people loved it as shown in their direct consumption and attraction of culture jamming activities presented in television, radio, and print media. Finally, if I were a culture jammer, I would choose to represent the importance of wearing clothes from clothing companies that participates in social activities that eradicates inequalities, poverty, and chaos in the society.


“Culture Jamming”. 2009.Center for Communication and Civic Engagement. 6 May 2009 <>

Jamming.htm >.

Klein, Naomi. “Taking Aim At The Brand Bullies”.

Lasn, Kalle. “Culture Jamming”. The Consumer and Society Reader. 1999.

Panda, Tapan. “Taking A Brand Global”. 2009. Indian Institute of Management. 6 May 2009 <>

+%5B+The+Hindu+Business+Line+-+Catalyst-+September+19-2002%5D.pdf >.

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