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In what ways has Internet changed fashion journalism - Essay Example

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This study explores how the Internet is changing fashion journalism, taking into consideration the advantages and disadvantages of this intermediary as a consumer source of fashion information…
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Download file to see previous pages The paper tells that social technologies are no longer a niche market of lifestyle activities for the user of the Internet. Blogs, video-sharing applications and social networks are becoming mainstream activities globally, thus changing the methodology of relationship with media and fashion. The mainstream properties of Internet usage are dominating the distribution and flow of information in very wide demographic audiences. Traditional fashion journalism, such as fashion magazines, provided limited opportunities for gaining market interest or disseminating information as these sources of journalism were targeted as specific, homogenized groups of potential buyers that were restrained through geographics. Fashion industry marketers now have a much broader audience to target using blogs, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter (as several examples) in order to promote their information and products. The mainstream aspects of Internet usage no longer constrain the fashion industry in gaining market interest, which can lead to higher profitability or establish a quality fashion brand. Traditional fashion journalism relied on cultural intermediaries, individuals in society “who transmit information from those engaged in the creative and production processes of fashion design to consumers”. These include photographers, journalists, ad agencies, salespersons and celebrity models. Cultural intermediaries bring value to the fashion content or marketing strategy as it relates to targeting customers or providing valuable fashion information. For instance, the usage of celebrity models gains sales advantages from the consumer culture under social learning theory. This theory describes that individuals in society will model the beliefs or behaviours of role models who are deemed credible and attractive in the eyes of the receiver so long as they witness the model being rewarded for these actions (Neubert, Carlson, Kacmar, Roberts and Chonko, 2009). This has been one of the fundamental aspects of providing equity and value for fashion journalists as the legitimacy, in the eyes of society, of the cultural intermediaries provides reproduction of similar values and attitudes. This has, traditionally, led to higher sales for fashion merchandise through fashion journalism and associated print or televised media. The Internet, despite those who believe it is eroding traditionalism in fashion journalism, is still modelled against the value of cultural intermediaries. Why is this? Consider the fashion blog as a relevant example. Fashion blogs allow for interactive commentaries to be posted by a variety of consumers where compliments or complaints can be searched by hundreds of thousands (if not millions) of Internet users worldwide. “Peers listen to and trust these reviews” (Fichter, 2007: 27). Under Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, a model that is intended to serve as a template for universal foundational motivations and needs, individuals in society are motivated by affiliation with peer groups (Gambrel and Cianci, 2003). The fundamental needs for a sense of ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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