Document Type

Book Chapter


This chapter offers a modest ethnographic account of interaction in musical communities online. The focus is on the consequences of CMC (computer mediated communication) becoming integrated into the traditional “career,” in Becker’s (1963) sense, of the “amateur” electronic musician. Specifically, it explores the use of peer-to-peer (p2p) distribution networks by “bedroom” electronic producers for the purposes of musical learning, exchange, and “professional” advancement in terms of distribution and the like. Through analyzing “real-time” interaction online in a number of “communities of sound” associated with a p2p network, I hope to show how p2p is experienced and utilized by musicians. In particular, I hope to sketch out some of the implications of such interactions for our conceptions of “subcultures,” musical learning, and the uses of p2p itself.