[chinese blood, irish heart] - DEFUNCT: Poddie Culcha

Monday, February 28, 2005

Poddie Culcha

Welcome to the Fold Posted by Hello

I’m a big fan of Ipods really. The feeling of being able to store your entire music collection into one sleek looking package that fits into your palm is quite satisfying. Having an Ipod is like having control. Being able to summon any song you want at any given moment gives you complete control over your environment, the audible part that is. With play lists you can play a set of songs that suits your specific moods. It also has social reverence: you can get to know a person a little better by looking at each other’s Ipod collection. And there’s also that status symbol attached to it. Now I must admit that I don’t own an Ipod or any Mp3 player for that matter. Honestly, I find it quite surprising for such a technology-driven individual like me (I also don’t own any console systems to which I have been dissed countless times!). Even my mom asks why I don't have one.

A few weeks ago while sitting at a pub with some classmates, one of them lashed out an Ipod because someone wanted to suddenly listen to some Coldplay. Like a domino effect, two others proceeded to whoop out their ‘minis’ and the whole place turned into an ‘Ipod public sphere.’ Some other guy had a different type of Mp3 player but he went with the flow. I didn’t really feel left out with my aging mini-disc player with its 20 or so songs per disc, I just don’t feel anything for Ipods and I don’t have the need for one. But then again as I stated above, I’m a big fan of them! So why can’t I just give in and go get one? I actually had the opportunity once about 3 years ago, before they really came out in the European market. I was to buy the 20gig Ipod for a friend of mine while I was in Hong Kong. Sitting in a teeny electronics store at Tsim Sha Tsui computer centre, I glossed over the Ipod’s brochure while my ‘gwai-lo’ friend (slang for white guy) Seamus kept muttering about how he didn’t need such technological drivel in his life (ironically he was leaping with joy when his Da got him a Zen Creative player last Christmas and ripped well over a thousand songs from me). I knew this Ipod was going to sell like hot cakes when it hit the shelves back home. But yet I didn’t proceed to buy for myself. Went for the mini-disc player instead.

Some sociologists have begun assessing the cultural impact of Ipods and their users. My favourite terms so far have been ‘Poddie Culture’ and ‘attack of the white earphone brigade.’ I fear my view of Ipods will decline over the next few years, one thing’s for sure that I’ll never own one because I’ve already crossed that line (as in if I wanted to have one, I would’ve done it a long time ago). I am starting to notice those generic white earphones more & more these days, be it on the bus or in queues. Even the ‘goy’ in the ‘get the look’ section in the Sunday Tribune today can be noticeably seen with them (yeah, the muppet with the pink sweater). I’d be cynical to say that Ipods are becoming superficial fashion statements (“what colour’s yours?”), kind of like a ‘triumph of style over substance’ sort of thing. There’s even a new service called 'Feed My Pod'( ) that hires technicians to load your music onto your Ipod for you (at 99c per CD). What utter complete trash to spend your money on! Capitalism has never looked so pathetic.

I have nothing against Ipods and its users, I just hate mainstream culture and popular trends. I just hope that soon someday that there will be more diversity in the market place (in all cases) and more competition against Apple. So for the moment I’ll just hold it in and grind my teeth whenever I see those bland generic white earphones.
I'm a big fan of Ipods, really.

Last month, Apple announced 1st Quarter Sales of Ipods rose by 74% ($300 million)
PS: can you imagine they actually sell these t-shirts

ipod shirt Posted by Hello