What is my media niche?

What is my media niche?

For BCM241 (Media Ethnographies), we have been asked to identify a media niche we are involved or interested in to ethnographically research for our major assignment. I have many niches I’m interested in and struggled to narrow it down to a single idea. I have two niches to discuss in this blogpost, which may actually help me make my decision.

Niche #1 : “Underground” and “Indie” Australian (and other) Musicians and Bands

This is a niche I’ve been involved in since around 2012/13 when I began high school and started expanding my music taste, and listening to Triple J. Since then I’ve always loved finding new bands, going to as many concerts and festivals (and North Gong Sundays) as I can afford, buying lots of merch and making Spotify playlists and recommendations to my friends. Now, due to COVID-19, I’ve also been viewing plenty of live streams and music videos from my favourite artists.

My last festival before lockdown: Spacey Jane at Laneway Festival Sydney, Feb 2020.

Due to Triple J’s large following and the constantly evolving use of social media across the past decade, many indie Australian bands such as Ocean Alley and Windang locals, Hockey Dad have actually become quite well-known nationally and internationally. However, there are still many Australian artists and bands I believe are majorly underrated within our own country, and this is something I hope will change within the next few years.

I would love to explore the ways in which other music lovers, like myself, find and interact with new music, and what their preferred “methods” are. I would also like to explore the utilisation of TikTok to promote smaller bands and musicians. This is something I have noticed more on my TikTok “For You Page” with many bands combining popular trends with their music to reach a larger audience.

Something I also find interesting as a listener of indie music is the “subculture/lifestyle” that comes with it. I think many young Australians would have a preconceived idea of what a stereotypical Triple J listener would look like and how they would act, and this is also something that could be explored.

Niche #2 One Direction

One Direction at the AMA’s 2014. Photo by Kevin Mazur. Source: https://www.vulture.com/2019/12/one-direction-friendship-fued-explainer.html

I’m not going to lie, One Direction was the first thought I had when I posed the question, “what is my media niche?”, to myself. I have been a fan of One Direction since I first heard ‘What Makes You Beautiful‘ in 2011. Something I’ve found really interesting about One Direction, and particularly their fans, is that 99% of them never really grow out of their One Direction phase. The popularity of One Direction within this degree was also confirmed to me when I made this tweet the other day, which convinced me that 1D could be a possible niche I could explore.


Just to expose myself further, I’m watching ‘One Direction: Where We Are – Live from San Siro Stadium’ as I write this blogpost. (Yes, that is a link to watch the film in its entirety on YouTube.)

Personally, I’ve recently noticed a new wave of One Direction fans, which may correlate with a number of factors like boredom during lockdown, the 10 year anniversary of the band (which was a couple of weeks ago) and the increasing popularity of different 1D trends and songs on TikTok. For a more personal example of this “new wave”, my younger sister and her friends (who were only 7 when One Direction went on an “18-month hiatus”) all identify as big One Direction fans, know all their songs and now follow the boys’ solo careers.

I’d love to explore the fan culture of One Direction. What are the different ways One Direction fans express themselves across multiple media platforms? How do fans continue to make new content about the band five years after their split? How has this helped One Direction and their solo careers remain relevant in the media? What are the different fan conspiracies and theories that surround 1D? What makes people remain such big fans of the band, despite there being no signs of a reunion anytime soon? (that hurt me to write lol)

The Media Theory Toolbox – My Public Sphere

The Media Theory Toolbox – My Public Sphere

I wake up and am immediately checking Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter in an endless circle until I finally drag myself out of bed. I turn my car on and Triple J comes blaring through my crappy speakers. I chat with my friends through the day about anything from our upcoming festival outfits to world politics. I sit down with my family at dinner and watch Nine News and then maybe The Project. Maybe I’ll watch a little bit of ESPN later for my basketball fix.

Here are the parameters of my public sphere, or my “18th century coffee house” as Jurgen Habermas may have put it, although my public sphere doesn’t really stick to his “no women or minorities” rule. Anyway, this is where my knowledge of the outside world is learnt.

This week’s BCM110 lecture on this topic definitely made me think a little deeper about the ideas, values and beliefs that I choose to surround myself with on a daily basis, how I interact with them, and how they have shaped me and my views. It also made me think a surprisingly high amount about Big Brother, but I’m slowly learning that these lectures can be extremely random in terms of examples.

I’ve been involved in my fair share of debates online, and offline. I have quite a strong political opinions if that wasn’t obvious from my previous blog posts. I’ve had discussions with fellow students from my high school, teachers, friends, and family about LGBTQ+ rights, racism, xenophobia, feminism, the use of the n-word, and so on. Whilst not all ended on a mutual understanding of the other’s beliefs, sometimes there was a “breakthrough” with each party coming to a shared agreement. These “conversations” opened my eyes to just how large of an impact the public sphere has on an individual.

I have come to realise that I have definitely made solid decisions about my public sphere, whether that be subconsciously or deliberately. The media definitely plays a massive role in all of this. I choose to follow Instagram accounts and Facebook pages which relate to my interests and my beliefs. I unfollow old classmate’s babbling on with support for Pauline Hanson and sharing misogynistic jokes. I have no room for that negativity in my “coffee house”. I choose to surround myself with people and media that reflect my personal views on the world.

Gif: xhttps://media.giphy.com/media/l4JyWw1bpRI6oUOIg/source.gif

The first post. (actually second)

The first post. (actually second)

Hi, this was meant to be my first post but I got a bit carried away with my other post so I’ll backtrack…

My name is Abbey (if you couldn’t figure that out from the URL and title of the blog) and I’m a first year student studying a Bachelor of Communications and Media (Marketing Communications and Advertising) at UOW.

I have 3 major passions:

  1. BASKETBALL. Particularly NBA and NBL. My teams are the San Antonio Spurs and Illawarra Hawks, but I also have a soft spot for the Milwaukee Bucks and Philadelphia 76ers. If you want some betting tips, I’m your girl.
  2. LIVE MUSIC, or music in general. Every single penny of my measly savings is spent on live music. It’s currently March and I’ve been to Field Day (not my proudest musical moment), Gang of Youths, Laneway and RÜFÜS DU SOL. I’m also seeing Matt Corby this month, and going to Groovin’ the Moo in April and Ball Park Music in May. My Spotify is linked on this blog too if you want to check it out. I also love finding new music, so follow me or send through some of your recommendations!
  3. SOCIAL JUSTICE. This may be evident from my previous blog post. A lot of my social media sites consist of posts trying to educate and raise awareness. This passion has mostly stemmed from doing Aboriginal Studies for my HSC, where my major work focused on the importance of teaching Aboriginal history, culture and heritage and identity in schools.

Anyway, I’ve been forced to make this blog, like the rest of Comms + Media, but I’m going to try my best to make some quality content that is somewhat interesting to read. So if you’ve stuck around til the end of this post, welcome and I hope you enjoy my blog 🙂