In Defense of the Hipster

Hipster SharkPART ONE: WHAT IS A HIPSTER, AND WHY DOES EVERYONE HATE THEM? or: YOU’RE SO FAKE (AND SO AM I)

My name is Tuna Ghost and I have a confession: I’m a hipster.

One may think this is a self-defeating statement, like “this sentence is false” or “all Cretans are liars, says so-and-so of Crete”, as one of the commonly accepted hallmarks of a hipster is that he or she will vehemently deny that they are a hipster.  This bit of conventional wisdom is easily verified, all one has to do is ask the hipsters around one if they self-identify as a “hipster”.  Personally, I have to look no further than my own friends to see evidence of it.  By the traditional definition of “hipster” they are obviously hipsters, but thus far I am the only one who will gladly self-identify as such. One may wonder why anyone in their right mind would identity with a subculture that has become synonymous with shallowness, lack of authenticity and sneering douche-baggery (my friends certainly do), but in this article I will demonstrate that this is not a fair assessment of Hipsterism.

But before I can defend The Hipster, we should define our terms. From Wikipedia:

Hipster is a slang term that first appeared in the 1940s, and was revived in the 1990s and 2000s often to describe types of young, recently-settled urban middle class adults and older teenagers with interests in non-mainstream fashion and culture, particularly alternative music, indie rock, independent film, magazines such as Vice and Clash, and websites like Pitchfork Media.

Well that sounds innocuous enough, yes? I don’t read Vice or Clash but I am certainly a type of young(ish) adult from middle-class roots with interests in non-mainstream fashion and culture, particularly indie music and independent film. My friends all have similar interests, and surely these interests don’t have any intrinsic, toxically condescending elements that transfer to the people who who are involved with them.

Then why are hipsters almost constantly under fire? For a closer look, check out Christian Lorentzen’s article “Why the Hipster Must Die: A Modest Proposal to Save New-York Cool.” Here he provides another, much more accusing definition for “hipster”:

Under the guise of ‘irony,’ hipsterism fetishizes the authentic and regurgitates it with a winking inauthenticity. Those 18-to-34-year-olds called hipsters have defanged, skinned and consumed the fringe movements of the postwar era — Beat, hippie, punk, even grunge. (Read more: Time Out NY)

The definition reeks of an agenda, sure, and it is total bunk in many ways, but it provides us with an adequate starting place.  Ignoring the debate over whether or not these movements ever had “fangs” to begin with, all of the movements listed were the hipster movements of their times if we use the Wikipedia definition.  Urban young adults with middle-class roots? Check. Interests in non-mainstream fashion and culture?  Check.  Mostly white and appropriating minority cultures? Check. In the article, Lorentzen calls hipsters the “assassins of cool”, charging them with the attempted murder of New York Cool.  He comes off like an aging hippy complaining that these kids don’t know what real cool is, angry and afraid that his values are disappearing with the advent of a new movement devoid of meaning that will leave him behind.  And, as he is surely aware, to be left behind in this race is to be made un-hip.

As problematic as Lorentz’s article is, it nevertheless provides us with the conventional answer to “what is a hipster”: someone who values the aesthetic value above all else, who prides themselves on their coolness while at the same time denying it.  They wear clothes for the ironic/fashion value, because it is deemed hip or cool.  Their favorite music and literature are chosen for the same reasons.  They go to shows and hit the scene to be seen, to be viewed as cool.  They buy working class beer (Pabst Blue Ribbon is often cited) instead of the more expensive beer they can obviously afford.  Their entire identity is just a construction. They slum. They’re fake.  Check out Look At This Fucking Hipster, www.latfh.com. Or Hipsters: The Dead End of Western Civilization at Adbusters (I should warn you that the article is pretty lousy, but there are some insightful comments) for confirmation of this idea.  Basically, it seems hipsters are focused on image, even to the detriment of feelings or sentiment or meaning of any kind.

The problem is, a lot of this involves some pretty crappy and occasionally insulting reasoning. A common criticism I hear, perhaps you’ve heard it yourself, is “they don’t wear those clothes because they like them, they wear it because x/y/z”. Apparently they are wearing those tight jeans and t-shirts for some other reason, something incriminating. They don’t wear those clothes because they like them, ergo they are “fake”.

This is a ridiculous criticism for a number of reasons. First, someone wearing clothes for reasons besides the apparently primary reason of “I like it” is not a new phenomenon. Simply put, people wear clothes for reasons other than “liking them” ALL THE TIME.  Why did women ever wear corsets and girdles? Or high-heels that smash one’s toes?  Why does anyone wear a hijab in terrible heat?  Why do we wear suits to funerals and tuxedos to weddings?  For that matter, why don’t we all strip our clothes off whenever it is too hot? “Because I like it” is not always the primary reason to wear something; in fact, it’s pretty far down the list.

Secondly, to charge someone with insincerity because they are wearing something simply for ironic value, rather than because they like or enjoy something, is equally silly.  If one enjoys irony, or any other post-modern idea for that matter, and are wearing something to achieve a desired effect in that area, then I think that qualifies as “liking it”. How could it be otherwise?  There’s a very nasty idea at work here: Irony isn’t fun, therefore you can’t have fun being ironic, therefore they’re not wearing it because its fun. They must have some other, more insidious reason for wearing it.

There are class issues brought up in accusations of hipsters as well; there’s this notion of middle-class white kids appropriating working-class fashions and tastes for reasons other than because they are working class, e.g. hanging out in dives rather than the upscale bars they can obviously afford to patronize, wearing shirts found in thrift stores and Salvation Army donations instead of the more expensive clothes they could easily purchase.   I find this accusation of middle-class people not acting middle-class enough for someone’s taste very strange and a little unsettling.  For one, determining someone’s class by a glance is not a talent most people have. The age of most hipsters is in an area where their class is fairly nebulous anyway their careers are only just beginning, and that’s if they’re lucky.  What does it mean when you label the person who serves you coffee or rings up your purchase at the counter “middle-class”? What about the line cooks and the waiters?  The young man or woman working at the bank? The bartenders? How do you know they are supported by their parents?  My parents may be financially comfortable, but when I was living in a rundown rat-hole of a house in Detroit working two jobs to pay rent and tuition (and to support my fairly robust substance-abuse problem) was I still “middle-class”?

Even if they are definitively middle-class with the money and education typical of that demographic, frankly the idea of a group of bohemian-minded middle-class people purposefully standing apart from the dominant trends, politics, and morals of their class is nothing new. Aside from the already-mentioned Beatniks and Hippies, what about the Dadaists?  Shelley and Byron? How are they different? Do the same criticisms apply to them?  I often hear the argument that these people contributed something to music or the arts and so become (somehow) exempt from the same criticisms, but will one then make the claim that hipsters don’t? That is plainly false. Bands started by hipsters are everywhere. I can’t throw a rock without hitting a hipster artist or musician, and if you claim that hipsters aren’t making good music or art you’re simply not looking hard enough. Not only that, but hipsters have a wide-range of artistic interests, and their attention (or at least their financial support) has helped bring formerly small-time acts into a larger arena.  Take metal for instance, a scene with a large variety which has recently found a new market in hipster circles (I’m not just talking about Mastadon here, before anyone says anything). This attention has helped metal bands sell more records and reach a new audience, something vital to any artistic endeavor.

Too much of the criticism against hipsters seems to be from people who cannot understand how indulging in fashion and fun hair and the “scene” can be fun, therefore it CAN’T be fun, therefore these people aren’t actually having fun.  They’re just fakes with ulterior motives.  They don’t want to look good and be passionate about music and the arts, they are forcing themselves to do so in some masochistic fashion to seek approval from a scene they actually detest. There’s a very troubling notion inherent in all this, that indulging in fashion and being passionate about music and the arts is not something real people do, that one cannot like something just because it is fashionable, which is ridiculous beyond words.

You may have noticed a common theme in these criticisms of Hipsterism: authenticity, or rather the lack of it.  Many of their trends are affectations, so they’re not sincere but if someone genuinely likes affectations, what does that make them?  Real or fake?  Does that make them, a la Breakfast at Tiffany’s, a “real fake”?  Once again, there’s an unspoken but agreed upon idea at work here, namely that real people don’t indulge in new trends or fashions simply because they are new or fun.  Are we really willing to agree with this? The implications are pretty severe.  Look around you if we operate as if this idea is reality, then there are almost no “real” people out there.  When did indulging in fashion and fun hair become a crime?  When did “real” people stop doing this?

Too often the criticisms I hear simply reaffirm that “hipster”, as a pejorative, is functioning only as an othering device. Hipsters are as guilty of this as anyone, but only because “hipster” is such a dirty word.  I see so many people, people whose notions of culture or masculinity are being threatened, using “hipster” simply to mean “someone who’s cultural markers, as evidenced by the clothes they wear and the music they listen to, reflect a culture that I am not a part of and therefore must be stupid or fake”. The assumptions about the accused, about their sincerity in regard to their tastes and fashions, come shortly after.  Someone can’t be politically or socially aware because they want to, because surely nobody likes that. They can’t dress in an androgynous fashion because they like it, because nobody “real” likes being androgynous. They can’t have fun with irony because irony isn’t fun — therefore, they’re just doing it to be popular, to get laid, or, most importantly, to make me feel stupid or out of touch.

People, please!  I’m doing it because its fun and to make you feel out of touch.

Stick around for Part 2: AUTHENTICITY IS BULLSHIT, or: POP IS THE NEW PUNK, in which I will explore the notion of authenticity that is the root of most criticisms of Hipsterism, and explain why it is bullshit.

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  • MoralDrift

    Ahhh tuna ghost, now I understand why you are such a rabid asshole, you fucking hipster.

    JK I actually thought it was one of the more well written pieces I’ve read on the hipster “phenomeon”. Identity and culture sure are fucked up these days aren’t they?

  • Anonymous

    Ahhh tuna ghost, now I understand why you are such a rabid asshole, you fucking hipster.

    JK I actually thought it was one of the more well written pieces I’ve read on the hipster “phenomeon”. Identity and culture sure are fucked up these days aren’t they?

  • echar

    This is coming from a guy who used to have a real Mohawk,
    and not one of those pussy faux-hawks. If you want to look like an idiot, fine,
    whatever. But don’t cry when people treat you like one. 

    PS

    PBR is troll piss, there is no excuse for drinking shitty beer other than not being able to afford the goods.  

    • DeepCough

      Fucking right, anyone who drinks PBR and doesn’t work a blue-collar job is a pretentious twat.

      • Jin The Ninja

        i don’t drink (azn tolerance) except for sake. and i had to google pbr.

        • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

          You didn’t miss out on much…trust. PBR is to beer what sulfuric acid is to champagne.

          You’re bound to be happier with the sake…although a nice break can made if you don’t mind plum or black raspberry wine…I recommend Bohae

          • Jin The Ninja

            oh i do like plum wine on occasion, but no one else will drink that with me…lol

    • Bigdickmegaherz

      I like PBR so fuck you!

  • Anarchy Pony

    Ah, it’s sad because they don’t have a real culture to call their own. 

  • Monkey’s Uncle

    This is coming from a guy who used to have a real Mohawk,
    and not one of those pussy faux-hawks. If you want to look like an idiot, fine,
    whatever. But don’t cry when people treat you like one. 

    PS

    PBR is troll piss, there is no excuse for drinking shitty beer other than not being able to afford the goods.  

  • Wanooski

    Ah, it’s sad because they don’t have a real culture to call their own. 

  • D Block

    Here’s why I hate them.

    Last winter a local independent theater was showing one of my favorite horror movies of all time; The Thing. We get there early and we see the theater is PACKED with hipsters. We ironic mullet having hipsters, tons of plad wearing hipsters, tight jeans hipsters, Christmas sweatshirt wearing hipsters, sweater vest wearing hipsters. The whole time my cousin is shitting on these guys for just being who they are. I don’t stop him because it’s fun to make fun of people who are different. And up until this point in the story hipsters are still totally cool with me.

    Then the movie starts, and right from the fucking get go these assholes are laughing AT EVERYTHING. Laughing at computers, laughing at dogs, laughing at Kurt Russel for fucks sake. They laughed the entire fucking movie. And anyone who laughs at The Thing and totally ruins it for the 3 non-hipsters (me and the two I was with) is a fucking asshole. Ever since that day I’d pay to have classic movies played and let hipsters laugh the whole movie then flame thrower them up departure. Fuck those guys.

    • Anarchy Pony

      That is a travesty, The Thing is like the original body horror film. Absolutely outstanding special effects for its time, and even still to this day. God. What bull crap.

    • Tuna Ghost

      damn kids don’t know good cinema when its put right in front of them, amirite

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=708760058 Paqui Persea

      Solution –

      1. Top a high proof liquor bottle with an oily rag
      2. Throw bottle into theater.
      3. Block escape routes
      4. Laugh maniacally at their screams
      5. Realize that their screams are ironic, as screaming is a pretty mainstream thing to do when on fire.
      6. ????
      7. PROFIT

  • D Block

    Here’s why I hate them.

    Last winter a local independent theater was showing one of my favorite horror movies of all time; The Thing. We get there early and we see the theater is PACKED with hipsters. We ironic mullet having hipsters, tons of plad wearing hipsters, tight jeans hipsters, Christmas sweatshirt wearing hipsters, sweater vest wearing hipsters. The whole time my cousin is shitting on these guys for just being who they are. I don’t stop him because it’s fun to make fun of people who are different. And up until this point in the story hipsters are still totally cool with me.

    Then the movie starts, and right from the fucking get go these assholes are laughing AT EVERYTHING. Laughing at computers, laughing at dogs, laughing at Kurt Russel for fucks sake. They laughed the entire fucking movie. And anyone who laughs at The Thing and totally ruins it for the 3 non-hipsters (me and the two I was with) is a fucking asshole. Ever since that day I’d pay to have classic movies played and let hipsters laugh the whole movie then flame thrower them up departure. Fuck those guys.

  • DeepCough

    All hipsters are scum, including Tuna Ghost.

  • DeepCough

    All hipsters are scum, including Tuna Ghost.

  • mole_face

    Modern day Internet Hipsters are definitely annoying – anyone who was into indie/punk culture before the 2000s remembers that when it actually took time and effort to find out about the underground scene and hunt down the records, only a very small minority of people cared enough to put forth the effort. In the internet age where everyone has instant access to pretty much every album ever recorded, there basically is no underground anymore – which is definitely fucking awesome on a lot of levels. But considering that all the key punk and indie bands from the 70s-today are now known to millions and millions of new fans as the direct result of online file sharing, it’s especially obnoxious to see all these ironic-mustache-sporting douchebags coming late to the party while simultaneously acting like it’s a badge of cool to know about SST or some shit.

    Honestly though, most of the time it seems like this whole “hating hipsters” meme is most fervently adopted by people who are insecure about their own inferior taste in music/culture.

    • Tuna Ghost

      Honestly though, most of the time it seems like this whole “hating hipsters” meme is most fervently adopted by people who are insecure about their own inferior taste in music/culture.

      Ironic, isn’t it, when so much of that hatred comes from other hipsters…

      • mole_face

        I wouldn’t call myself a “hipster”, personally… I hate a lot of indie rock. I’ve been obsessed with punk rock and “alternative culture” for 15+ years and it’s inextricably a part of me, so I don’t really feel threatened by neo-indie internet hipsters. They’re just embarrassing themselves, as far as I’m concerned. Just look at all the fucking drones who were sporting the “ankle hugger jeans with Husker Du mustache” look a few years ago. If they want to wear that shit in public, I should thank them for so conveniently identifying themselves with a Douchebag Costume. It does make douches a lot easier to identify.

    • senseworld

      This is really the deal fuzzgun, all us olds are pissed off they didn’t earn their stripes.  Hipsters are what google did to cool, it destroyed any possibility of an underground. Any glimmer of a regional counter-culture is sucked into the equalizing machine and spit back to the world at large with a price tag. Part of it is probably epistemology, based on the blood, sweat, and tears it used to require to “know” something “cool.” I don’t think the hipster reaction is in any sense invalid though, these kids grew up without any sweat equity in the scene. The one facet of this I resent is that no one cares for quality, but, a lot of counter-culture suffered from that over the last four decades as well. 
      As for the class war arguments going on above, the working-class never likes it when you gentrify their living. It prices them out of their clothing, food, and neighborhoods. Nobody likes their way of life being priced out of their means because some spoiled ass white kid thought it looked cool. That said, the process of gentrification can be pretty fun if you’ve got the cash to spend. William S. Burroughs was a rich kid, Kerouac and Ginsberg too, people in the jazz clubs thought they were pretty douchey as I understand it. The original punk bands all sold pop records, and weren’t the property of some elite counter-culture, as they became in the later days. It’s all primate in-group/out-group territorial politics, inherent to the species, probably important in some distant past. My blood pressure is better if I don’t take any of it too seriously.

  • fuzzgun

    Modern day Internet Hipsters are definitely annoying – anyone who was into indie/punk culture before the 2000s remembers that when it actually took time and effort to find out about the underground scene and hunt down the records, only a very small minority of people cared enough to put forth the effort. In the internet age where everyone has instant access to pretty much every album ever recorded, there basically is no underground anymore – which is definitely fucking awesome on a lot of levels. But considering that all the key punk and indie bands from the 70s-today are now known to millions and millions of new fans as the direct result of online file sharing, it’s especially obnoxious to see all these ironic-mustache-sporting douchebags coming late to the party while simultaneously acting like it’s a badge of cool to know about SST or some shit.

    Honestly though, most of the time it seems like this whole “hating hipsters” meme is most fervently adopted by people who are insecure about their own inferior taste in music/culture.

  • fuzzgun

    Modern day Internet Hipsters are definitely annoying – anyone who was into indie/punk culture before the 2000s remembers that when it actually took time and effort to find out about the underground scene and hunt down the records, only a very small minority of people cared enough to put forth the effort. In the internet age where everyone has instant access to pretty much every album ever recorded, there basically is no underground anymore – which is definitely fucking awesome on a lot of levels. But considering that all the key punk and indie bands from the 70s-today are now known to millions and millions of new fans as the direct result of online file sharing, it’s especially obnoxious to see all these ironic-mustache-sporting douchebags coming late to the party while simultaneously acting like it’s a badge of cool to know about SST or some shit.

    Honestly though, most of the time it seems like this whole “hating hipsters” meme is most fervently adopted by people who are insecure about their own inferior taste in music/culture.

  • guest

    People hate hipsters cause they look fucking goofy

  • guest

    People hate hipsters cause they look fucking goofy

  • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

    Interesting piece. makes me realize that at the end of the youthful ages we just splits off into newer forms of of these cultural segments no different than the subcultures that plague the kids. Seems hipster is just the word for all the weird goop(for lack of a better word) that border between all the other subcultures. I’d say they cannot be defined in the same terms as other people, but that’s just me.

    Its going to be hard to convince me that Authenticity is bullshit though… I don’t know about you, but I can kindof hear the difference between someones heart and soul being poured into some artistic expression, and some asshole pouring their money into someone elses….

    edit: I realized in respect to this piece, I’m probably talking about a different kind of authenticity though…

    • Tuna Ghost

      not necessarily.  In Part 2, I’m going to present the problems one runs into when using an expressionist theory of art, things like: what about actors?  What about people who work on commission?  

  • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

    Interesting piece. makes me realize that at the end of the youthful ages we just splits off into newer forms of of these cultural segments no different than the subcultures that plague the kids. Seems hipster is just the word for all the weird goop(for lack of a better word) that border between all the other subcultures. I’d say they cannot be defined in the same terms as other people, but that’s just me.

    Its going to be hard to convince me that Authenticity is bullshit though… I don’t know about you, but I can kindof hear the difference between someones heart and soul being poured into some artistic expression, and some asshole pouring their money into someone elses….

  • Guest

    Can’t believe the negative feedback you’re getting. Bigotry is for the simple who carp at “easy” targets. Those who know me know that I’m intelligent, mature and have depth and I’m with you bro’. Historically, the “hipster” (or whatever they’re called at the time) is not shallow but a contributor to the progress/shape of culture. Hindsight. Perspective. You all lack the long view. You might not like it, you might hate change, but you better find a way to cope. It happens with you or without you. Your choice.

    There is never a shortage of retrogrades here who can type (me included, rarely).

  • Anonymous

    Can’t believe the negative feedback you’re getting. Bigotry is for the simple who carp at “easy” targets. Those who know me know that I’m intelligent, mature and have depth and I’m with you bro’. Historically, the “hipster” (or whatever they’re called at the time) is not shallow but a contributor to the progress/shape of culture. Hindsight. Perspective. You all lack the long view. You might not like it, you might hate change, but you better find a way to cope. It happens with you or without you. Your choice.

    There is never a shortage of retrogrades here who can type (me included, rarely).

  • Anonymous

    Can’t believe the negative feedback you’re getting. Bigotry is for the simple who carp at “easy” targets. Those who know me know that I’m intelligent, mature and have depth and I’m with you bro’. Historically, the “hipster” (or whatever they’re called at the time) is not shallow but a contributor to the progress/shape of culture. Hindsight. Perspective. You all lack the long view. You might not like it, you might hate change, but you better find a way to cope. It happens with you or without you. Your choice.

    There is never a shortage of retrogrades here who can type (me included, rarely).

  • Rachel Haywire

    Hipsters degrade authenticity and display watered-down postmodernism (and even watered-down Discordia) at an alarming rate. They have no sense of identity and view sincerity as a social taboo. Yet one thing I must say is that their ability for self critique and self anaylsis is off th charts. Great article. Hipsters unite!

    -Rachel Haywire | Los Angeles

    • http://www.raptitude.com David Cain

      “…view sincerity as a social taboo.”

      Ah! That’s it. I could not put my finger on my problem with hipsters until right now.

      • Guest

        Can I put my finger on you? That would be getting closer to the pulse. 

  • Rachel Haywire

    Hipsters degrade authenticity and display watered-down postmodernism (and even watered-down Discordia) at an alarming rate. They have no sense of identity and view sincerity as a social taboo. Yet one thing I must say is that their ability for self critique and self anaylsis is off th charts. Great article. Hipsters unite!

    -Rachel Haywire | Los Angeles

  • Wanooski

    That is a travesty, The Thing is like the original body horror film. Absolutely outstanding special effects for its time, and even still to this day. God. What bull crap.

  • Anonymous

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  • StillAtMyMoms

    Hipsterism gained prominence as some sort of revolt against the mainstream prep popularity that was prevalent from the mid 90′s to early 2000′s.  It wasn’t that long ago when everybody propped their collars and felt obligated to buy $150 made in Bangladesh jeans from Abercrombie and Fitch.  Evidently pop culture got tired of spending all their paychecks on preppy clothes and formed an “anti-corporate” fashion movement in retaliation.  The birthplace of hipsterdom was originally the sulky emo music trend for whiny suburbanites.  But that was a little too much on the gothic/alternative side.  Hipsterism eventually evolved into a more white-friendly acceptable form of counterculture that was reminiscent of the beatniks and hippies of yesteryear.  Plus it appealed more to the intellectuals and art cliques; it accurately portrayed faux authenticity in a sense compared to the emo and nu metal alternative movements.  This extremely phony “counterculture” is no different from any other pop culture dichotomies from the past: as with punks versus the disco people and so on.  It’s all a fucking fad; bar none.  But the problem with the term “hipster” is that it is a very generalized word of reference: the hipster-in-appearance-only or the actual counterculture types who strive to live a very unconventional lifestyle.  But they too have to be questioned as to whether they were influenced by this current trend or not.  

    TunaGhost is a full shit or really dumb to defend a trend that is entirely superficial–either that or he/she wanted to instigate some controversy to gain some readers.    Today’s mainstream is to seek obscure, underground bands and read irrelevant books such as The Catcher in the Rye or On the Road at a non-chained coffeehouse to seem “cultured”.  Or they pull out an ironic card when they admit their guilty pleasures of listening to Katy Perry or the Jonas Brothers to reaffirm they are still part of the scene. 

    Talk about a fucking walking contradiction: Someone who strives to be “authentic” but yet can’t be true to themselves. 

    (I’m not apologizing for all the quotes either because I’m trying to emphasize that hipsterism is possibly even more phony than the wannabe preppies from the last decade.)  Even chain clothing stores are marketing hipster fashions as “vintage” or “nostalgic”.  Substitute polyester or clothespins or legwarmers and you’ll see no difference–guaranteed.  It has become the new prep.  Hipsterism is the now the current mainstream.  Today it is considered uncool–and extremely dorky–to look like a prep. The douchey frat brothers are now wearing faded, ripped jeans with a vintage buttoned-up shirt.  I mean come on, we got all these mainstream rappers wearing those ridiculous big, black-framed glasses to convey a hipster sense of fashion.  I mean if the hipsters truly had enough conviction in believing they are genuinely authentic, then why don’t they just look like they got out of a bed sans a shower and the women stop shaving their pits when they go out in public on a Friday night?  I am so going to invest in tattoo removal companies and plastic surgery when they all come in swarms the following decade when they want to get rid of their ridiculous fashion mistakes from the past that are permanent.  Prep is truly the new punk.  And so the pop culture cycle goes on….  

  • StillAtMyMoms

    Hipsterism gained prominence as some sort of revolt against the mainstream prep popularity that was prevalent from the mid 90′s to early 2000′s.  It wasn’t that long ago when everybody propped their collars and felt obligated to buy $150 made in Bangladesh jeans from Abercrombie and Fitch.  Evidently pop culture got tired of spending all their paychecks on preppy clothes and formed an “anti-corporate” fashion movement in retaliation.  The birthplace of hipsterdom was originally the sulky emo music trend for whiny suburbanites.  But that was a little too much on the gothic/alternative side.  Hipsterism eventually evolved into a more white-friendly acceptable form of counterculture that was reminiscent of the beatniks and hippies of yesteryear.  Plus it appealed more to the intellectuals and art cliques; it accurately portrayed faux authenticity in a sense compared to the emo and nu metal alternative movements.  This extremely phony “counterculture” is no different from any other pop culture dichotomies from the past: as with punks versus the disco people and so on.  It’s all a fucking fad; bar none.  But the problem with the term “hipster” is that it is a very generalized word of reference: the hipster-in-appearance-only or the actual counterculture types who strive to live a very unconventional lifestyle.  But they too have to be questioned as to whether they were influenced by this current trend or not.  

    TunaGhost is a full shit or really dumb to defend a trend that is entirely superficial–either that or he/she wanted to instigate some controversy to gain some readers.    Today’s mainstream is to seek obscure, underground bands and read irrelevant books such as The Catcher in the Rye or On the Road at a non-chained coffeehouse to seem “cultured”.  Or they pull out an ironic card when they admit their guilty pleasures of listening to Katy Perry or the Jonas Brothers to reaffirm they are still part of the scene. 

    Talk about a fucking walking contradiction: Someone who strives to be “authentic” but yet can’t be true to themselves. 

    (I’m not apologizing for all the quotes either because I’m trying to emphasize that hipsterism is possibly even more phony than the wannabe preppies from the last decade.)  Even chain clothing stores are marketing hipster fashions as “vintage” or “nostalgic”.  Substitute polyester or clothespins or legwarmers and you’ll see no difference–guaranteed.  It has become the new prep.  Hipsterism is the now the current mainstream.  Today it is considered uncool–and extremely dorky–to look like a prep. The douchey frat brothers are now wearing faded, ripped jeans with a vintage buttoned-up shirt.  I mean come on, we got all these mainstream rappers wearing those ridiculous big, black-framed glasses to convey a hipster sense of fashion.  I mean if the hipsters truly had enough conviction in believing they are genuinely authentic, then why don’t they just look like they got out of a bed sans a shower and the women stop shaving their pits when they go out in public on a Friday night?  I am so going to invest in tattoo removal companies and plastic surgery when they all come in swarms the following decade when they want to get rid of their ridiculous fashion mistakes from the past that are permanent.  Prep is truly the new punk.  And so the pop culture cycle goes on….  

    • StillAtMyMoms

      On a side note: I really like when Disinfo posts the occasional pop culture critique article.  It’s refreshing to read compared to the daily posts of the depressive prison state we’re currently under.

      • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

        True…and Tuna Ghost did a great job giving a birds eye view from inside the minds of a scene. Its a breath of fresh air from the political stuff that tries our times.

    • Tuna Ghost

      Talk about a fucking walking contradiction: Someone who strives to be “authentic” but yet can’t be true to themselves.

      As noted in the article, what if someone truly likes affectations, likes indulging in non-mainstream fashion, likes dressing up as something other than what they are?  How is that not being true to themselves?  

      • Chris Mounce

        But the hipsters I’ve encountered usually don’t like that band whose t-shirt they wear. They wear nascar or ball caps and hate sports if you can call nascar a sport.

        • Tuna Ghost

          exactly, its an affectation.  If they like affectations, then how is it inauthentic?

          • Jin The Ninja

            I agree, but it’s a rather inaccessible esoteric argument, you are NOT wrong, but i think [some] people will have a difficulty grasping at such a cerebral concept.

          • Ediesuperstar

            af·fec·ta·tion (fk-tshn)
            KEY

            NOUN:

            A show, pretense, or display.

            Behavior that is assumed rather than natural; artificiality.
            A particular habit, as of speech or dress, adopted to give a false
            impression.

          • Tuna Ghost

            Right.  We get that.  The question here is, if one sincerely enjoys affectations, what then?  Can we still call them “fake” is they’re engaged in a sincere activity?

    • Tuna Ghost

      Evidently pop culture got tired of spending all their paychecks on preppy clothes and formed an “anti-corporate” fashion movement in retaliation.
      Interesting, you’re saying the genesis of the hipster lies in a pop culture trend?  That’s pretty unique for a sub-culture.  

      TunaGhost is a full shit or really dumb to defend a trend that is entirely superficial–

      Once again, I must ask “when did indulging in fashion trends become a crime?”  Are you one of these people who claim that real people don’t indulge in fashion trends?  

      Today’s mainstream is to seek obscure, underground bands and read irrelevant books such as The Catcher in the Rye or On the Road at a non-chained coffeehouse to seem “cultured”.

      Not to pull the “I’m more hip than you” card, but if you think those books are part of the mainstream/hipster culture then you’ve hardly got your finger on the pulse, so to speak.

      Or they pull out an ironic card when they admit their guilty pleasures of listening to Katy Perry or the Jonas Brothers to reaffirm they are still part of the scene.

      Wait, how is it ironic if they’re admitting to a sincere attraction to something considered un-hip?  That doesn’t make any sense, guy.

    • Tuna Ghost

      Sorry for the triple-post, but I had to address this– 

      I mean if the hipsters truly had enough conviction in believing they are genuinely authentic, then why don’t they just look like they got out of a bed sans a shower and the women stop shaving their pits when they go out in public on a Friday night?

      I strongly recommend you go to Lookatthisfuckinghipster.com and take note of what some of those people are wearing.  Some of the modern hipster fashion is too bizarre to ever be mainstream.  Skinny jeans?  Sure.  T-shirts?  Of course.  Converse?  Definitely.  Tiny neon shorts on men with suspenders?  mmmmm not so much, methinks.  

  • StillAtMyMoms

    On a side note: I really like when Disinfo posts the occasional pop culture critique article.  It’s refreshing to read compared to the daily posts of the depressive prison state we’re currently under.

  • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

    If I could offer one reason why older ‘alternative’ scene people sneer down at hipsters…it would be this:

    I freely admit that almost every alternative movement of past decades suffered the same fate…slowly being coopted and transformed into a consumerist lifestyle marketed at a niche. It happened to punk…it happened to grunge…it happened to the hippies…it happened to goth and to emo…

    …but the difference with hipster scene folks seems to be that they never got coopted…they emerged whole cloth from the marketplace…a part of it from the start…an image that lends itself to purchase and never fought it…because they ARE it.

    For some…who were part of various niches when they emerged and bitterly watched as they were bought and sold to those afterwards (the kids who bought used military gear cheap, spikes and chains, black markers and band logos…then stitched together handmade one of a kind clothes…only to see a decade later kids headed for hot topic to take their allowance and buy their ‘punk’ look at the mall)…

    …its hard to take anyone seriously who fought against nothing, represents nothing, and means nothing. It’s not even hate…hate takes effort…its more like disdain.

    Nothing personal Tuna…obviously you’ve got brains-aplenty…but the scene as a whole doesn’t lend itself to awe or even grudging respect.

  • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

    If I could offer one reason why older ‘alternative’ scene people sneer down at hipsters…it would be this:

    I freely admit that almost every alternative movement of past decades suffered the same fate…slowly being coopted and transformed into a consumerist lifestyle marketed at a niche. It happened to punk…it happened to grunge…it happened to the hippies…it happened to goth and to emo…

    …but the difference with hipster scene folks seems to be that they never got coopted…they emerged whole cloth from the marketplace…a part of it from the start…an image that lends itself to purchase and never fought it…because they ARE it.

    For some…who were part of various niches when they emerged and bitterly watched as they were bought and sold to those afterwards (the kids who bought used military gear cheap, spikes and chains, black markers and band logos…then stitched together handmade one of a kind clothes…only to see a decade later kids headed for hot topic to take their allowance and buy their ‘punk’ look at the mall)…

    …its hard to take anyone seriously who fought against nothing, represents nothing, and means nothing. It’s not even hate…hate takes effort…its more like disdain.

    Nothing personal Tuna…obviously you’ve got brains-aplenty…but the scene as a whole doesn’t lend itself to awe or even grudging respect.

    • Tuna Ghost

      they emerged whole cloth from the marketplace…a part of it from the start…
      I find this odd in light of the anti-consumerist sentiment found in most hipster groups.  Pieces of the hipster “uniform” can certainly be bought almost anywhere nowadays, but that became true of any sub-culture since WWII.  There was a time, not too long ago, when finding a pair of men’s jeans that were tight enough was next to impossible in mainstream fashion outlets (in the US, anyway).  

      • Jin The Ninja

        Tuna firstly let me say great article.

        Secondly, i while generally accept the label of “hipster” for myself: my jeans are japanese, raw and low, and my sound is underground hip hop not indie rock.

        but boy, do i love me some plaid workmen’s shirts;)

        • Tuna Ghost

          huh, Japan was where I first started dressing hipster.  I guess it shouldn’t surprise me that the US is behind the rest of the world when it comes to fashion.

          • Jin The Ninja

            hey buddy i  was wearing evisu’s since highschool:P

      • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/UQGZN5E3I2OREWD45JE2RTZMJY BrianD

        do you hear yourself? we’re “anti-consumerist” but, man, we go out of our way to find some skinny jeans…. doesn’t sound like anti-consumerism to me.

        • Tuna Ghost

          you…you don’t know what “anti-consumerism” means, do you

          • http://twitter.com/ericschiller Eric Schiller

            You don’t seem to either ‘Tuna’…

            If you are going to argue an opposing point, it helps if you explain what you mean.

            “Anti-consumerism refers to the socio-political movement against the equating of personal happiness with consumption and the purchase of material possessions”

            It seems that BrianD is spot on. In my experiences with hipsterism it is most certainly about consumerism. Most movements that are about *making purchases* and *appearing a certain way* are fulfilling the same old American values, whether it comes in the form of skinny jeans for hipsters, or Carhartt jeans for hicks.

          • Tuna Ghost

            Simply having a particular taste in fashion doesn’t equate to personal happiness in purchasing those items.  I would have thought that was obvious.

          • http://twitter.com/ericschiller Eric Schiller

            Hipsterism goes far beyond “simply having a particular taste in fashion.”  Hipsterism is obsessed with it to the point that they drive brands in new and horrifying directions.  It definitely equates possessions with personal happiness by putting such a huge emphasis on them.  While it is popular to claim that its for “ironic” reasons, or that they really don’t care, that simply is not true.  

            The very core of hipsterism is consumption.  If hipsters truly didn’t equate happiness with their clothes, bikes, or beer tastes, then they would make much more bland and utilitarian choices. Not only that, but the attributes that are given hipsters wouldn’t be so focused on their beer, clothes, and bikes.

            While implying that they don’t care what others think, they demonstrate that they *actually* do by how much effort they put in.

          • Tuna Ghost

            Hipsterism is obsessed with it to the point that they drive brands in new and horrifying directions.
            What exactly do you mean by this?  What brands?  Would an example of this be American Apparel putting out those hideous tiny neon shorts for men because some hipsters were seen wearing them (do they have those in the states yet?  I’m way across the globe)?  And how is this any different than goths and stores like Hot Topic?  

            It definitely equates possessions with personal happiness by putting such a huge emphasis on them.

            Again you’re equating an interest in fashion with consumerism or materialism.  I really don’t think that’s a fair charge.  Are you going to make this same charge against every subculture that has a particular fashion style?  

            While it is popular to claim that its for “ironic” reasons, or that they really don’t care, that simply is not true.

            I can’t deny the charge of being disingenuous about the not caring bit (of they care what they wear, everyone does), but how do you know they’re not wearing it for ironic reasons?   This is what I’m talking about when I say you’re making baseless assumptions on their motivations.  Some people enjoy irony, some people enjoy affectations.  

            If hipsters truly didn’t equate happiness with their clothes, bikes, or beer tastes, then they would make much more bland and utilitarian choices.

            Oh, that’s a load and you know it.  That charge can be made against practically anyone.  I refuse to believe you wear what you wear for strictly utilitarian reasons.  

          • Mr Willow

            And how is this any different than goths and stores like Hot Topic?

            Aside from the fact that (especially old school/traditional) goths don’t like, respect, shop at, or want to be associated with stores like Hot Topic?

            Goths find much more enjoyment finding things in thrift stores or second-hand shops that have wear and age, or very basic things in Target and then modifying them themselves. Sew a patch on, put a logo, put some feathers on the shoulders of an old jacket, fix a ripped seam with safety pins.

            Some go so far as to simply going to fabric stores and making their own clothing from scratch.

            They don’t want to go into a store that has everything already stitched together for them. There isn’t any effort, and more importantly, everyone will look more or less the same, because there would have been some designer who decided that Siouxsie and the Banshees should be splashed across the back of a jacket, where would be be the fun, enjoyment, or chance to identify yourself as unique (while still being goth because nearly everything is black) in that? 

            To put it more simply: goths don’t want to walk into a store to find a shirt that is pre-shredded.

            Also, most (again, especially old school) goths don’t really like what goth is identified as today anyway. PVC trench coats, (mens) shirts with cinches in the back, and those god-awful platform boots, where everyone identifies Marilyn Manson as being the quintessential goth. I personally despise modern ‘goth’ æsthetic, and I’m twenty-three for christ-sakes. 

            What ‘goth’ should look like: http://fuckyeahgoths.tumblr.com/ (go in about ten pages at least)

            Notice, no trench-coats, little eyeliner, no velvet, no PVC, no platform boots. All of that has been replaced by motorcycle jackets, crosses (predominantly), leather, cotton (or wool), pointed shoes (or motorcycle boots). Not to mention not overly ostentatious. Simple. Minimalistic.

            That was goth before it was turned into a brand.

          • Tuna Ghost

            To put it more simply: goths don’t want to walk into a store to find a shirt that is pre-shredded.
            I believe it.  Hipsters don’t go into stores and buy jeans that have been distressed by a machine.  They distress them themselves, or buy vintage.  

            The point was (I think, dude hasn’t gotten back to me yet), the fashion trends eventually caused brands to start making some god-awful pieces of clothing.  

            Goths find much more enjoyment finding things in thrift stores or second-hand shops that have wear and age, or very basic things in Target and then modifying them themselves. Sew a patch on, put a logo, put some feathers on the shoulders of an old jacket, fix a ripped seam with safety pins. 

            You could have started that paragraph with the word “hipsters” and it would have been equally true.  I’ve done all those things.  I will admit it is easier to spot the…well I don’t want to say “real”, so let’s choose “seasoned”…seasoned goths from the amateurs than it is with hipsters, and this has to do with some of the points you’ve made.

          • Honu

            I know it’s cool to feel different and feel righteous about your sense of being different but so called hipsters are no different than any of the counterculture movements that every generation has.  Arguing for hipsterism is fine and I agree that when you’re on the inside of the countercultural movement of the moment, it feels great and strengthens your ideals about it.  It’s a youthful indulgence, this over identification with an idealized lifestyle. 

            Nothing personal Tuna because I respect your intelligence (even if I
            disagree with you about things on this site) but I think this subject is
            overly narcissistic and unnecessary even for a blog site such as this
            that has plenty of posters such as myself who enjoy narcissism. ,

          • Tuna Ghost

            I’m not arguing for Hipsterism necessarily (and I’m certainly not trying to say its special or really unique or anything), I’m just defending it against its most common criticisms, as those criticisms are mostly bunk.

          • Elmyr23

            don’t feed the troll

          • Bob

            skipped 100+ post, fighting arugment and saying your real point 100+ post deep is lame. maybe your a devils advocate, good job. effect somebodies thought

          • Tuna Ghost

            Nothing personal Tuna because I respect your intelligence (even if I 
            disagree with you about things on this site) but I think this subject is
            overly narcissistic and unnecessary even for a blog site such as this 
            that has plenty of posters such as myself who enjoy narcissism.

            Damn, if you had just used the word “pretentious” in there somewhere I could have totally accused you of being a hipster.  Curses!

          • Tuna Ghost

            It definitely equates possessions with personal happiness by putting such a huge emphasis on them.
            This upsets me more and more every time I see it.  That charge can be made against teddy-bear collectors, model train hobbyists, or people who collect anything at all.  To call that “materialism” is ridiculous.  

          • Honu

            What would you call it then, a hobby?  Semantics.  I think it’s just upsetting to you or anyone who at one point (myself included and to an extent, still today) feels or felt a sense of being special based on whatever you’ve identified yourself with at the time, that it can actually be reduced to something as pedestrian and as common as consumerism.  Gotta go along with Lacerveza on this one.

          • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

            Not really favoring any side here, but I think he’s arguing that having any interest in particular (be it model trains or fashion) that happens to require money cannot necessarily be called consumerism simply on the basis that it requires money… In the same light you cant call having a desire to stick to organic food consumerist even though it tends to require more money today than eating crap.

            The problem is the intertwining of economic success and engaging an what you might truly be interested in. I personally believe devoting yourself to fashion is silly… but I think the same thing of model train collectors, but I do not begrudge either as consumerist.

            By the same token if you live your life just for this particular aspect of your life, and only think about getting mo’ money just to get that next train, or the hottest fashion… then you probably need to reorganize your thinking.

          • StillAtMyMoms

            The best explanation I’ve read about a hipster.  Kudos.  Reasoning with a hipster is like an atheist reasoning with a Christian anyways, they will always be in denial and never look themselves in the mirror and realize how full of shit they are in reality.

          • Nano_Thermite_911

            And this is why Tuna Ghost is right to self-classify as a hipster.  

          • LaCervezaMasFina

            “Simply having a particular taste in fashion doesn’t equate to personal
            happiness in purchasing those items.  I would have thought that was
            obvious”

            Okay. I gotta call bullshit on this.
            Having any taste in any fashion AT ALL is STILL buying into consumerist culture. It’s hard to believe that if you were somehow disallowed from ever wearing your particular “hipster uniform” again it wouldn’t effect your happiness or even make you downright upset.

            I’ll admit it: I used to be goth as fuck back in the day when it was far less mainstream. I would even spew out the same old “We’re different! We’re anti-consumerism! We’re non-conformists!” trope that every sub-culture has repeated through the ages. Then I started to realize; black velvet, black lace, black eyeliner, white face; we WERE all conformists. Some of us would spend god-awful amounts of money just to get that one piece for our wardrobe that would help us better fit into our “gothic uniform.”  We WERE consumerists. And what was even worse was that the same “mainstream” that we had so maligned before was making money off of us not being able to see that we were all exactly the same.

            You mention collectors further down and I think that’s a particularly weak analogy. You’re collecting aesthetics, they’re collecting teddy bears (or Beanie Babies). It’s still material things. It’s STILL materialism. You can even call it a fetish. How often does any collector willingly give up their collection or sell it off to raise money for something non-materialistic like, say, educating/feeding/housing the underprivileged? Not very often.

        • eyebeam

          Being anti-consumerist doesn’t mean you have to make all your clothes yourself, or that you have to buy the most generic version you can find. It’s OK to spend some money on well-made, fashionable clothes that look & feel good on you, as long as you don’t confuse that with spiritual fulfillment.

          • Godlesski866

            Jin the Ninja agrees again.. as he agrees with frigging everything… lemming.

      • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

        Whatever people may think…you certainly lit up the comments board :-) Thats a success in itself!

        Never much liked skinny jeans…except on my exes. I was always a ‘boot-cut’ jeans fella…(making a slight exception for my clubbing years…when leather and mesh were more appropriate)…but the rest of my garb was an amalgam of whatever we could scrounge or handcraft around Kalamazoo, Detroit, Lansing and Grand Rapids, MI.

        Maybe I really am a crusty leftover from the days of homeless gay punks,ravers,goths and glam kids roaming the streets of Michigan…with a closet full of old gear I could never wear to work and paint a house in…and a shelf covered in albums that may have a street cred value and precious memories…but comparatively little relevance anymore. I’m a little bitter and I know it. I miss being right on the cutting edge, when my senses were sharp and everything I liked became acclaimed and respected within a year or two. I had the friends that everyone else wanted…woke up in the beds other people wished to be in…showed my face in the scenes that seemed to count…

        …and then I met someone, fell in love, wanted to earn a living and take care of them, and settled down and got old.

        but my music is still awesome…and I’ll never stop cheering for the underdogs in any given fight. So if you’re out there working to make your scene more relevant, more conscious, more meaningful than a shopping expedition…go you…never quit and never say die!!!

    • Bigdickmegaherz

      Awesome response… Bravo.

  • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

    True…and Tuna Ghost did a great job giving a birds eye view from inside the minds of a scene. Its a breath of fresh air from the political stuff that tries our times.

  • Azathoth

    The reason is.. It’s like, youngsters realized that every subculture has been absorbed and as another poster said, transformed into a consumerist lifestyle devoid of any meaning. And how do these people react? By consciously creating a subculture without any meaning? Fuck, you had the chance to be the first generation to realize all this bullshit and think for themselves, without blindly following any trend just because you need to feel a sense of belonging, and you wasted it on following the trend of not following any trend?

    No, hipsters, inventing a subculture that constantly tries to avoid being identified is NOT different from what every other subculture before you did: in fact, it’s the same damn thing, with the difference that this time you don’t even bother to at least pretend to stand up for something. Because whatever that’d be, it would risk becoming mainstream, and you can’t have that now, would you.

    It’s the same mindless behaviour every other generation had, but it insists on pretending not to be so. They want to feel special, like every other generation, they want to be heard, and to differentiate themselves, they avoid anything that other large groups of people do. This is their idea of being an individual. They don’t understand that by reacting this way to modern culture, they’re still giving it meaning, importance, and that the only way to become your own person is to stop giving a fuck what other people think of whatever is in front of you, and just ask yourself if you like it or not, without any fear of being categorized or identified. By reacting to “mainstreamness”, you still let something else, some greater authority, decide for you, and there’s really nothing more mainstream than that.

    THAT is why people hate hipsters.

  • Azathoth

    The reason is.. It’s like, youngsters realized that every subculture has been absorbed and as another poster said, transformed into a consumerist lifestyle devoid of any meaning. And how do these people react? By consciously creating a subculture without any meaning? Fuck, you had the chance to be the first generation to realize all this bullshit and think for themselves, without blindly following any trend just because you need to feel a sense of belonging, and you wasted it on following the trend of not following any trend?

    No, hipsters, inventing a subculture that constantly tries to avoid being identified is NOT different from what every other subculture before you did: in fact, it’s the same damn thing, with the difference that this time you don’t even bother to at least pretend to stand up for something. Because whatever that’d be, it would risk becoming mainstream, and you can’t have that now, would you.

    It’s the same mindless behaviour every other generation had, but it insists on pretending not to be so. They want to feel special, like every other generation, they want to be heard, and to differentiate themselves, they avoid anything that other large groups of people do. This is their idea of being an individual. They don’t understand that by reacting this way to modern culture, they’re still giving it meaning, importance, and that the only way to become your own person is to stop giving a fuck what other people think of whatever is in front of you, and just ask yourself if you like it or not, without any fear of being categorized or identified. By reacting to “mainstreamness”, you still let something else, some greater authority, decide for you, and there’s really nothing more mainstream than that.

    THAT is why people hate hipsters.

    • Tuna Ghost

      They don’t understand that by reacting this way to modern culture, they’re still giving it meaning, importance, and that the only way to become your own person is to stop giving a fuck what other people think of whatever is in front of you, and just ask yourself if you like it or not, without any fear of being categorized or identified. By reacting to “mainstreamness”, you still let something else, some greater authority, decide for you, and there’s really nothing more mainstream than that. 

      Can’t that be said of every sub-culture that was created as a movement against mainstream culture?

      • Azathoth

        Yes, but hipsters like to think they’re free from these mechanisms, and that they “beat the system”, they “wised up” where every other subculture before them didn’t. I wanted to point out that this is not the case, at all, and in fact, by deluding themselves of being above it, they’re even more unaware victims of it than every generation/subculture before them.

        And here I’m going to speculate a bit, but I think this mechanism will end up being a disaster for future adults. Other subcultures, by having something to fight for, laid a groundwork for young people to learn what it is (in various degrees ofc) to stand up for something, and to actively do something to change things, even if that something was retarded and ineffective, it made it possible for those kids to have these kinds of experiences. This subculture has nothing of the sort: by constantly trying to escape “mainstreamness”, these young people are in a constant state of empty defiance, they never learn to genuinely care for something, and once they get bored of it, or become too grown up for it, all they’ll be left with will be confusion and apathy. While previous generations learned to grow up THROUGH their subcultures. the nature of this one will prevent them to do so, because it’s never explicitly defined: one day they’ll just be too old, and all they will have learned from it is how to be a hipster.
        Of course I’m not saying this will happen for everyone (god I HOPE not), this is just speculation on the risks of the mechanism: young people will still have their formative experiences regardless of their subculture. But as a cultural movement, you really can’t get more empty and less constructive than this.

        • Tuna Ghost

          I’ve just noticed something in your original post that I’m going to respond to here before moving on to your new post–

          By reacting to “mainstreamness”, you still let something else, some greater authority, decide for you, and there’s really nothing more mainstream than that.
          Grant Morrison has spoken at length about this, about how having enemies and positioning yourself “against” a group is essentially letting them define the boundaries of what and who you are.  I don’t deny this, but I think that’s hardly a problem unique to hipsters.  Of course, you recognize this, and then say

          Yes, but hipsters like to think they’re free from these mechanisms, and that they “beat the system”, they “wised up” where every other subculture before them didn’t.

          I’m not sure where you get evidence that hipsters think they’re above this and that other sub-cultures didn’t think they were above it.  If you were to tell a punk in ’79 “hey your fight against the system is only further propping it up and you’re allowing THEM to define who and what you are”, he or she might just punch you in the neck.  

          Some hipsters do recognize this, and some don’t because they’re still trying to figure out who they are and what they want from the world.  I would venture that, if one has a working knowledge of this history of the counter-culture in the US and access to certain authors, one can easily glean this lesson from what has come before.

          Your fears as to what will become of the poor youths caught up in a movement completely devoid of values and meaning are only valid if we’re working with the assumption that hipsters have no values, something I am very far from allowing.  

          • Azathoth

            >I’m not sure where you get evidence that hipsters think they’re above this

            Isn’t that part of the reason why they make fun of previous subcultures? It can’t be just for esthetic reasons, and if they were aware of it I doubt they would do it so often without feeling like idiots. Don’t they make fun of people listening to popular artists just because they’re popular, while at the same time doing the same, but in reverse? I mean even if they’re aware of the mechanism, it certainly doesn’t look like it, from their actions.
            And I thought that the whole point of escaping identification was to avoid the accusation of following a stereotype, to emphasize your own independence from culture’s influence. I assumed that if they felt this was just the same old clichè, they’d stop doing it..

            >Your fears as to what will become of the poor youths caught up in a
            movement completely devoid of values and meaning are only valid if we’re
            working with the assumption that hipsters have no values

            But I AM saying that, or rather.. I’m saying that, collectively, they have no shared values. Being a hipster is a neutral influence on their values. In that perspective, every “member” of the “movement” is alone, and won’t experience the sensation of having a common goal/desire like previous subcultures did, and even though I’m sure a lot of people will turn out fine regardless, it feels like a wasted opportunity for some kids to learn on their skin what that actually means. It’s not even a unifying force, and it’s a shame: considering the state of political apathy we find ourselves in, a lot of people (especially young people) would really benefit from feeling that sense of.. That feeling that with your ideals and your actions you CAN actually do some difference in the world, that you don’t have to just passively acknowledge it and bitch about it on the internet. But maybe this attitude came to be exactly because a lot of young people feel like that.. Which is even more worrying, to me.

          • Tuna Ghost

            Isn’t that part of the reason why they make fun of previous subcultures? … …Don’t they make fun of people listening to popular artists just because they’re popular, while at the same time doing the same, but in reverse? I mean even if they’re aware of the mechanism, it certainly doesn’t look like it, from their actions.

            If it is the reason, then they possess an insight I hadn’t thought them capable of.  As for the second point, is that really why they’re listening to that music?  That question goes for either group.  I honestly can’t think of anyone I know who listens to a kind of music not because they like but because its popular/unpopular.  How did you come to know their motivations?  That seems like a hard thing to discover, and it paints a strange picture: people torturing themselves by listening to music they don’t enjoy in an attempt to gain approval from their peers or whomever.  Surely, in the case of the hipsters, its not a great leap to think that, having found the music on the radio unimpressive, they went in search of something else?  If they discovered that for music to become mainstream it has to follow a certain format, and they decided they didn’t enjoy it, then it seems intuitive to actively seek music that is freed from that restraint.  

            And I thought that the whole point of escaping identification was to avoid the accusation of following a stereotype, to emphasize your own independence from culture’s influence. I assumed that if they felt this was just the same old clichè, they’d stop doing it..

            One thinks of a situation we’ve likely all seen, two hipsters angrily calling each other “hipster”.  I think there was an Onion article about that very scenario.  I won’t lie, I’m as confused (and upset) at hipsters’ inability to be honest with themselves about following trends and being part of a social/culture group.  

            >Your fears as to what will become of the poor youths caught up in a movement completely devoid of values and meaning are only valid if we’reworking with the assumption that hipsters have no values

            But I AM saying that, or rather.. I’m saying that, collectively, they have no shared values. Being a hipster is a neutral influence on their values.

            Well, that depends.  On the one hand, one can (people have, anyway) defined hipsters after WWII as “bohemian-minded middle-class people purposefully standing apart from the dominant trends, politics, and morals of their class”, which implies that they have values, morals, and political opinions.  As for modern hipsters, I frequently see a lot of anti-consumerist sentiment, along with anti-racist and homophobia.  There’s also a strong “green” streak, although how serious one is about that is hard to determine without getting to know them.  But there are morals and values, the question is whether being a hipster is truly a neutral influence on their values.  This a good question, and I’m not at all sure that it isn’t a neutral influence.  

            Compared to other subcultures, its certainly a much weaker influence.  Although the vast majority of hipsters are liberal a Republican hipster could still theoretically exist, which couldn’t be said of the Hippie movement.  Similarly, a racist or homophobic hipster is theoretically possible, although one would wonder why such a person would hang around the minorities and gays present in hipster social circles.

             I think one could count the fascination with bicycles as evidence of strong environmental values, or the attraction to organic and, more importantly, LOCAL foods as evidence of the same.  Shopping at thrift stores and being concerned about fair-trade companies, combined with an abhorrence for malls and places like that, can count as evidence of a trend towards anti-consumerism.   People always tell me “oh but they’re not doing that because its green/anti-consumerist, they’re just doing it because their friends are”, which is a.) impossible to determine, and b.) very unlikely that EVERYONE is doing it for those reasons.  Even if most of them are, is this a bad thing?  These are good habits, and many will keep them into adulthood.  Pretending all the beatniks and hippies were concerned with the ideologies these movements came to represent is, I think, wishful thinking.  

            As for your last paragraph, I’m reminded of the protests I’ve seen young adults organizing on college campuses.  That’s still alive, I promise you.  It may not come from Hipsterism, but is that really a bad thing?  Maybe its time for the youth to no longer get their anger, their desire to change, from the popular crowd.

          • Azathoth

            >I won’t lie, I’m as confused (and upset) at hipsters’ inability to be
            honest with themselves about following trends and being part of a
            social/culture group.

            But that’s what I was saying. They’re convinced that since they constantly change and are never precisely defined/identified, they’re not *really* following a trend, while they’re actually following the sub-culture trend in its purest form: the trend of not following any trend. It’s like they don’t even realize that this is the exact sentiment that fueled every other counter-culture trend before them and that they mock so much.

            Maybe this is just the result of what teenage rebellion looks like when it’s born in a society without any defined, simple “evil” to stand up against, apart from the obvious ones, like (as you said) corporatism and mindless hate-mongering. Although now that I think about it, you could say that every sub-culture since the 90s was born in basically the same conditions, and maybe they just got fed up with moping around.

            >It may not come from Hipsterism, but is that really a bad thing?  Maybe
            its time for the youth to no longer get their anger, their desire to
            change, from the popular crowd.

            Well sure, ideally that would be the best, but if a cultural trend is behind it, it can always help, even just with sheer numbers. A cultural movement is also useful because it helps focusing the attention of many people on one issue, and in this age of diminishing attention spans, it’s really something we need, badly.

      • Chris Mounce

        That’s a great point I’ve been a part of a number of anarchist groups and there is always at least one guy who does stupid things because hey where against the dominant culture so anything they think is bad is now magically good – drugs, orgies, violence.

      • http://twitter.com/ericschiller Eric Schiller

        Tuna, most of your responses seem to be weak attacks at generalizations.  Do you actually have any reasoning?

        • Tuna Ghost

          …so you’re not going to answer the questions or address the topics raised?  How very revealing.

          • http://twitter.com/ericschiller Eric Schiller

            Talk about taking me out of context.  I posted that before you responded to any comments.

          • Tuna Ghost

            very well, show me an example of a response being a “weak attack at generalizations”.

  • http://twitter.com/jasonpaulhayes jasonpaulhayes

    “There were never any good old days

    They are today, they are tomorrow

    It’s a stupid thing we say

    Cursing tomorrow with sorrow”

    Eugene Hutz (Goglo Bordello)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AJz-T9GabjY

  • jasonpaulhayes

    “There were never any good old days

    They are today, they are tomorrow

    It’s a stupid thing we say

    Cursing tomorrow with sorrow”

    Eugene Hutz (Goglo Bordello)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AJz-T9GabjY

    • StillAtMyMoms

      How ironic of you to quote lyrics from a hipster-sounding (and looking) band.

      • Tuna Ghost

        nah they’re not hipster, they’re just foreign and operating from a mainstream idea of what gypsies look like.  

        • StillAtMyMoms

          Do you have a sense of humor, Tuna?  Or is it so dry that I cannot even interpret it because I’m out of the scene?

          • Tuna Ghost

            nah, apparently I’m just terrible at recognizing sarcasm.  A poor trait in a hipster, I think we can agree

  • StillAtMyMoms

    How ironic of you to quote lyrics from a hipster-sounding (and looking) band.

  • StillAtMyMoms

    How ironic of you to quote lyrics from a hipster-sounding (and looking) band.

  • http://twitter.com/jasonpaulhayes jasonpaulhayes

    “A little tooo ironic, dont you think?”Alanis Morissette

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8v9yUVgrmPY

  • jasonpaulhayes

    Reply to StillAtMyMoms that for some reason didn’t post as a reply.

    “A little tooo ironic, dont you think?” Alanis Morissette

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8v9yUVgrmPY

  • DeepCough

    Fucking right, anyone who drinks PBR and doesn’t work a blue-collar job is a pretentious twat.

  • Tuna Ghost

    nah they’re not hipster, they’re just foreign and operating from a mainstream idea of what gypsies look like.  

  • Tuna Ghost

    They don’t understand that by reacting this way to modern culture, they’re still giving it meaning, importance, and that the only way to become your own person is to stop giving a fuck what other people think of whatever is in front of you, and just ask yourself if you like it or not, without any fear of being categorized or identified. By reacting to “mainstreamness”, you still let something else, some greater authority, decide for you, and there’s really nothing more mainstream than that. 

    Can’t that be said of every sub-culture that was created as a movement against mainstream culture?

  • Tuna Ghost

    Honestly though, most of the time it seems like this whole “hating hipsters” meme is most fervently adopted by people who are insecure about their own inferior taste in music/culture.

    Ironic, isn’t it, when so much of that hatred comes from other hipsters…

  • Tuna Ghost

    Talk about a fucking walking contradiction: Someone who strives to be “authentic” but yet can’t be true to themselves.

    As noted in the article, what if someone truly likes affectations, likes indulging in non-mainstream fashion, likes dressing up as something other than what they are?  How is that not being true to themselves?  

  • Tuna Ghost

    they emerged whole cloth from the marketplace…a part of it from the start…
    I find this odd in light of the anti-consumerist sentiment found in most hipster groups.  Pieces of the hipster “uniform” can certainly be bought almost anywhere nowadays, but that became true of any sub-culture since WWII.  There was a time, not too long ago, when finding a pair of men’s jeans that were tight enough was next to impossible in mainstream fashion outlets (in the US, anyway).  

  • Chris Mounce

    First of all I want congragulate Tuna Ghost for rising from the ashes of the Black Sun Gazette like a mighty phoenix. I think you’ve raised some good points here and look forward to the second part of your article. It was good change of pace from the usual Rome is burning political stories or heavens to murgatroid science run amok articles on Disinfo. The problem with modern hipsters is not that the borrow from other subcultures (i.e. punks) or other cultures (i.e. African-Americans) it’s the fact that they don’t seem stand for anything. Beatniks liked jazz, bad poetry and black authors but they also were deeply involved the civil rights. I don’t see what there about other than themselves. I may not like other subculture or counterculture’s beliefs but I know for the most part what they stand for. Modern hipsters use irony not prove a point or spark a debate, but to make themselves look “cooler” in the eyes of their peers. The two turning point for me with hipsters was over a political incident and social incident. Showing up anti-war rally and meeting snotty hipster wearing a George W. Bush 2004 re-election shirt acting like an ass because “protesting is stupid”. I wish had been a real anti-war Republican or even a Dubya true believer who bought the b.s. and joined the service. Because those people believe in something even if I don’t agree with them. I respect their passion. The second incident was while shopping at used bookstore and bumped into a guy wearing a superhero shirt. When I said “Hey I like (insert secret identity here)”. To which he looked at me with deer in headlights look and walked past after calling me a loser. Anybody who has been involved in any subculture has at one time or another been ostracized for their taste in art, music or fashion. But it really burns me up that people walk around wearing 80s hair metal or gangsta rap t-shirts, nascar or john deere hats, or blasting grunge or punk music that they (the hipster/arbiter of cool) thinks is stupid or lame because hey I’m so cool that even this crap I’m wearing can’t make me uncool. Being so arch and phoney all the time is annoying. As far as class goes most of us can tell your background by spending a minimum ammount of time with someone. Class isn’t like race or gender it’s more fluid. You can go up or down the socio-economic ladder (though more likely down). But some indiginities like working a menial job during college is temporary hell the middle class endures rather than the permanent hell the working class/poor deal with everyday because we have few options. 

  • Chris Mounce

    First of all I want congragulate Tuna Ghost for rising from the ashes of the Black Sun Gazette like a mighty phoenix. I think you’ve raised some good points here and look forward to the second part of your article. It was good change of pace from the usual Rome is burning political stories or heavens to murgatroid science run amok articles on Disinfo. The problem with modern hipsters is not that the borrow from other subcultures (i.e. punks) or other cultures (i.e. African-Americans) it’s the fact that they don’t seem stand for anything. Beatniks liked jazz, bad poetry and black authors but they also were deeply involved the civil rights. I don’t see what there about other than themselves. I may not like other subculture or counterculture’s beliefs but I know for the most part what they stand for. Modern hipsters use irony not prove a point or spark a debate, but to make themselves look “cooler” in the eyes of their peers. The two turning point for me with hipsters was over a political incident and social incident. Showing up anti-war rally and meeting snotty hipster wearing a George W. Bush 2004 re-election shirt acting like an ass because “protesting is stupid”. I wish had been a real anti-war Republican or even a Dubya true believer who bought the b.s. and joined the service. Because those people believe in something even if I don’t agree with them. I respect their passion. The second incident was while shopping at used bookstore and bumped into a guy wearing a superhero shirt. When I said “Hey I like (insert secret identity here)”. To which he looked at me with deer in headlights look and walked past after calling me a loser. Anybody who has been involved in any subculture has at one time or another been ostracized for their taste in art, music or fashion. But it really burns me up that people walk around wearing 80s hair metal or gangsta rap t-shirts, nascar or john deere hats, or blasting grunge or punk music that they (the hipster/arbiter of cool) thinks is stupid or lame because hey I’m so cool that even this crap I’m wearing can’t make me uncool. Being so arch and phoney all the time is annoying. As far as class goes most of us can tell your background by spending a minimum ammount of time with someone. Class isn’t like race or gender it’s more fluid. You can go up or down the socio-economic ladder (though more likely down). But some indiginities like working a menial job during college is temporary hell the middle class endures rather than the permanent hell the working class/poor deal with everyday because we have few options. 

    • Tuna Ghost

      Haha, didn’t think anyone remembered Black Sun Gazette around here, much less recognize me from there…

      The problem with modern hipsters is not that the borrow from other subcultures (i.e. punks) or other cultures (i.e. African-Americans) it’s the fact that they don’t seem stand for anything. Beatniks liked jazz, bad poetry and black authors but they also were deeply involved the civil rights.

      Excellent points, and for your perusal:   

      http://www.harkavagrant.com/index.php?id=228
      http://www.harkavagrant.com/index.php?id=229

      A problem I see with criticisms like yours is that not all beatniks were interested in civil rights or any social problems.  Its tempting to say “well, the real beatniks certainly did”, but then we run into the dilemma of figuring out who or what is a “real” hipster.  Many hipsters I know are very much anti-consumerism, anti-racism, and anti-homophobia; so many, in fact, that I’m tempted to call those virtues hallmarks of a “real” hipster.  Especially the anti-consumerist part.  Going to thrift shops, farmer’s markets, habits such as these are more often than not attributed to hipsters.  

      I mean, we’re defining hipsters as being usually middle-class with morals, values, and politics that diverge sharply from the generation before them, which short of implies that hipsters have morals, values, and political opinions.  

      The “intellectual/artist” archetype is very popular in hipster circles, and while many of them are just children and young adults trying on various identities to see which fit in an attempt to figure out who they are, just like there were in the beatnik, hippie, punk, grunge, etc. movements, some will end up holding these values on into adulthood (when they will no doubt cast aspersions on the newer movement for being devoid of these values).  

      But it really burns me up that people walk around wearing 80s hair metal or gangsta rap t-shirts, nascar or john deere hats, or blasting grunge or punk music that they (the hipster/arbiter of cool) thinks is stupid or lame because hey I’m so cool that even this crap I’m wearing can’t make me uncool.

      I would venture they are wearing those clothes because they enjoy the ironic or fashion value, not in an attempt to pronounce that their hipness is immune to even throwbacks to earlier, presumably “embarrassing” musical or fashion trends.  Or it could even be that they’ve found some value in that music and/or fashion, although it may not be the meaning or value the artists had originally hoped.

      • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

        Hah, I forgot about Hark a Vagrant. Good comic

  • Azathoth

    Yes, but hipsters like to think they’re free from these mechanisms, and that they “beat the system”, they “wised up” where every other subculture before them didn’t. I wanted to point out that this is not the case, at all, and in fact, by deluding themselves of being above it, they’re even more unaware victims of it than every generation/subculture before them.

    And here I’m going to speculate a bit, but I think this mechanism will end up being a disaster for future adults. Other subcultures, by having something to fight for, laid a groundwork for young people to learn what it is (in various degrees ofc) to stand up for something, and to actively do something to change things, even if that something was retarded and ineffective, it made it possible for those kids to have these kinds of experiences. This subculture has nothing of the sort: by constantly trying to escape “mainstreamness”, these young people are in a constant state of empty defiance, they never learn to genuinely care for something, and once they get bored of it, or become too grown up for it, all they’ll be left with will be confusion and apathy. While previous generations learned to grow up THROUGH their subcultures. the nature of this one will prevent them to do so, because it’s never explicitly defined: one day they’ll just be too old, and all they will have learned from it is how to be a hipster.
    Of course I’m not saying this will happen for everyone (god I HOPE not), this is just speculation on the risks of the mechanism: young people will still have their formative experiences regardless of their subculture. But as a cultural movement, you really can’t get more empty and less constructive than this.

  • Chris Mounce

    That’s a great point I’ve been a part of a number of anarchist groups and there is always at least one guy who does stupid things because hey where against the dominant culture so anything they think is bad is now magically good – drugs, orgies, violence.

  • Chris Mounce

    But the hipsters I’ve encountered usually don’t like that band whose t-shirt they wear. They wear nascar or ball caps and hate sports if you can call nascar a sport.

  • Tuna Ghost

    damn kids don’t know good cinema when its put right in front of them, amirite

  • Tuna Ghost

    Haha, didn’t think anyone remembered Black Sun Gazette around here, much less recognize me from there…

    The problem with modern hipsters is not that the borrow from other subcultures (i.e. punks) or other cultures (i.e. African-Americans) it’s the fact that they don’t seem stand for anything. Beatniks liked jazz, bad poetry and black authors but they also were deeply involved the civil rights.

    Excellent points, and for your perusal:   

    http://www.harkavagrant.com/index.php?id=228
    http://www.harkavagrant.com/index.php?id=229

    A problem I see with criticisms like yours is that not all beatniks were interested in civil rights or any social problems.  Its tempting to say “well, the real beatniks certainly did”, but then we run into the dilemma of figuring out who or what is a “real” hipster.  Many hipsters I know are very much anti-consumerism, anti-racism, and anti-homophobia; so many, in fact, that I’m tempted to call those virtues hallmarks of a “real” hipster.  Especially the anti-consumerist part.  Going to thrift shops, farmer’s markets, habits such as these are more often than not attributed to hipsters.  

    I mean, we’re defining hipsters as being usually middle-class with morals, values, and politics that diverge sharply from the generation before them, which short of implies that hipsters have morals, values, and political opinions.  

    The “intellectual/artist” archetype is very popular in hipster circles, and while many of them are just children and young adults trying on various identities to see which fit in an attempt to figure out who they are, just like there were in the beatnik, hippie, punk, grunge, etc. movements, some will end up holding these values on into adulthood (when they will no doubt cast aspersions on the newer movement for being devoid of these values).  

    But it really burns me up that people walk around wearing 80s hair metal or gangsta rap t-shirts, nascar or john deere hats, or blasting grunge or punk music that they (the hipster/arbiter of cool) thinks is stupid or lame because hey I’m so cool that even this crap I’m wearing can’t make me uncool.

    I would venture they are wearing those clothes because they enjoy the ironic or fashion value, not in an attempt to pronounce that their hipness is immune to even throwbacks to earlier, presumably “embarrassing” musical or fashion trends.  Or it could even be that they’ve found some value in that music and/or fashion, although it may not be the meaning or value the artists had originally hoped.

  • Zkrout

    My god I hate you, you are the definaition of a fucking hipster idiot. Move to Fort Collins where you belong cunt.

  • Zkrout

    My god I hate you, you are the definaition of a fucking hipster idiot. Move to Fort Collins where you belong cunt.

  • Zkrout

    My god I hate you, you are the definaition of a fucking hipster idiot. Move to Fort Collins where you belong cunt.

    • Tuna Ghost

      Look, if you want to make out with me all you have to do is ask

    • GEIST

      4 people like this…people who only know you after reading this article. 

  • Tuna Ghost

    I’ve just noticed something in your original post that I’m going to respond to here before moving on to your new post–

    By reacting to “mainstreamness”, you still let something else, some greater authority, decide for you, and there’s really nothing more mainstream than that.
    Grant Morrison has spoken at length about this, about how having enemies and positioning yourself “against” a group is essentially letting them define the boundaries of what and who you are.  I don’t deny this, but I think that’s hardly a problem unique to hipsters.  Of course, you recognize this, and then say

    Yes, but hipsters like to think they’re free from these mechanisms, and that they “beat the system”, they “wised up” where every other subculture before them didn’t.

    I’m not sure where you get evidence that hipsters think they’re above this and that other sub-cultures didn’t think they were above it.  If you were to tell a punk in ’79 “hey your fight against the system is only further propping it up and you’re allowing THEM to define who and what you are”, he or she might just punch you in the neck.  

    Some hipsters do recognize this, and some don’t because they’re still trying to figure out who they are and what they want from the world.  I would venture that, if one has a working knowledge of this history of the counter-culture in the US and access to certain authors, one can easily glean this lesson from what has come before.

    Your fears as to what will become of the poor youths caught up in a movement completely devoid of values and meaning are only valid if we’re working with the assumption that hipsters have no values, something I am very far from allowing.  

  • Tuna Ghost

    Evidently pop culture got tired of spending all their paychecks on preppy clothes and formed an “anti-corporate” fashion movement in retaliation.
    Interesting, you’re saying the genesis of the hipster lies in a pop culture trend?  That’s pretty unique for a sub-culture.  

    TunaGhost is a full shit or really dumb to defend a trend that is entirely superficial–

    Once again, I must ask “when did indulging in fashion trends become a crime?”  Are you one of these people who claim that real people don’t indulge in fashion trends?  

    Today’s mainstream is to seek obscure, underground bands and read irrelevant books such as The Catcher in the Rye or On the Road at a non-chained coffeehouse to seem “cultured”.

    Not to pull the “I’m more hip than you” card, but if you think those books are part of the mainstream/hipster culture then you’ve hardly got your finger on the pulse, so to speak.

    Or they pull out an ironic card when they admit their guilty pleasures of listening to Katy Perry or the Jonas Brothers to reaffirm they are still part of the scene.

    Wait, how is it ironic if they’re admitting to a sincere attraction to something considered un-hip?  That doesn’t make any sense, guy.

  • Tuna Ghost

    exactly, its an affectation.  If they like affectations, then how is it inauthentic?

  • Tuna Ghost

    Sorry for the triple-post, but I had to address this– 

    I mean if the hipsters truly had enough conviction in believing they are genuinely authentic, then why don’t they just look like they got out of a bed sans a shower and the women stop shaving their pits when they go out in public on a Friday night?

    I strongly recommend you go to Lookatthisfuckinghipster.com and take note of what some of those people are wearing.  Some of the modern hipster fashion is too bizarre to ever be mainstream.  Skinny jeans?  Sure.  T-shirts?  Of course.  Converse?  Definitely.  Tiny neon shorts on men with suspenders?  mmmmm not so much, methinks.  

  • Azathoth

    >I’m not sure where you get evidence that hipsters think they’re above this

    Isn’t that part of the reason why they make fun of previous subcultures? It can’t be just for esthetic reasons, and if they were aware of it I doubt they would do it so often without feeling like idiots. Don’t they make fun of people listening to popular artists just because they’re popular, while at the same time doing the same, but in reverse? I mean even if they’re aware of the mechanism, it certainly doesn’t look like it, from their actions.
    And I thought that the whole point of escaping identification was to avoid the accusation of following a stereotype, to emphasize your own independence from culture’s influence. I assumed that if they felt this was just the same old clichè, they’d stop doing it..

    >Your fears as to what will become of the poor youths caught up in a
    movement completely devoid of values and meaning are only valid if we’re
    working with the assumption that hipsters have no values

    But I AM saying that, or rather.. I’m saying that, collectively, they have no shared values. Being a hipster is a neutral influence on their values. In that perspective, every “member” of the “movement” is alone, and won’t experience the sensation of having a common goal/desire like previous subcultures did, and even though I’m sure a lot of people will turn out fine regardless, it feels like a wasted opportunity for some kids to learn on their skin what that actually means. It’s not even a unifying force, and it’s a shame: considering the state of political apathy we find ourselves in, a lot of people (especially young people) would really benefit from feeling that sense of.. That feeling that with your ideals and your actions you CAN actually do some difference in the world, that you don’t have to just passively acknowledge it and bitch about it on the internet. But maybe this attitude came to be exactly because a lot of young people feel like that.. Which is even more worrying, to me.

  • Tuna Ghost

    Look, if you want to make out with me all you have to do is ask

  • Musicman9492

    I think what all the aversion to hipsters boils down to (at least from what i see) is the personality of a lot of the sub-culture. Personally, I’m fine with people dressing in whatever (hey, buying stuff from Salvation Army or whatever isn’t all that bad – it’s cheap and sometimes can be worth it) or listening to whatever (I’m a director of a college radio station so whatever is is cool) or ever drinking canned beverages that could barely be considered beer (PBR). In the end it’s your call, go for it.

    However, the singular reason I cant stand people who would qualify as hipster (using one or both of your supplied definitions) is their nature. Now before i continue, there is of course the qualification that not all hipsters are like this but I’m talking in large part here. Many of the hipsters I’ve met have an oppressive, condescending nature. I can deal with you doing whatever you want with yourself whenever, but when every conversation turns into how they just found out about some band that ‘you couldn’t possibly have heard of’ (yes that has been said to me and not as a joke) or how what I did for the summer couldn’t compare with how their parents sent them to the Alps (or some similarly left-field vacation destination) then I have a problem.

    It boils down to this. I’m cool with whatever you do but most hipsters I’m encountered seem to put down whatever I, a (relatively) non-hipster, do. There is an air of superiority that I just can not stand.

  • Musicman9492

    I think what all the aversion to hipsters boils down to (at least from what i see) is the personality of a lot of the sub-culture. Personally, I’m fine with people dressing in whatever (hey, buying stuff from Salvation Army or whatever isn’t all that bad – it’s cheap and sometimes can be worth it) or listening to whatever (I’m a director of a college radio station so whatever is is cool) or ever drinking canned beverages that could barely be considered beer (PBR). In the end it’s your call, go for it.

    However, the singular reason I cant stand people who would qualify as hipster (using one or both of your supplied definitions) is their nature. Now before i continue, there is of course the qualification that not all hipsters are like this but I’m talking in large part here. Many of the hipsters I’ve met have an oppressive, condescending nature. I can deal with you doing whatever you want with yourself whenever, but when every conversation turns into how they just found out about some band that ‘you couldn’t possibly have heard of’ (yes that has been said to me and not as a joke) or how what I did for the summer couldn’t compare with how their parents sent them to the Alps (or some similarly left-field vacation destination) then I have a problem.

    It boils down to this. I’m cool with whatever you do but most hipsters I’m encountered seem to put down whatever I, a (relatively) non-hipster, do. There is an air of superiority that I just can not stand.

    • Tuna Ghost

      I won’t lie that one can find that air of superiority in some hipsters, and I think that comes naturally to some extent from chasing trends.  The novelty aspect is important when chasing fashion trends, so one sort of “wins” when one discovers or creates a new trend.  Unfortunately, this victory only has meaning with others engaged in the same race; trying to brag to someone not involved will only make one look like an asshole with absolutely zero self-awareness.  

      Of course, that sort of condescension comes in all walks of life–I recently made a friend (who is most certainly not a hipster) admit that if someone had come up to him proudly announcing his “discovery” of command line language operating systems, he (my friend) would have had a vicious insult on his lips and ready to go before the poor sap had even finished his sentence.  

  • Tuna Ghost

    Isn’t that part of the reason why they make fun of previous subcultures? … …Don’t they make fun of people listening to popular artists just because they’re popular, while at the same time doing the same, but in reverse? I mean even if they’re aware of the mechanism, it certainly doesn’t look like it, from their actions.

    If it is the reason, then they possess an insight I hadn’t thought them capable of.  As for the second point, is that really why they’re listening to that music?  That question goes for either group.  I honestly can’t think of anyone I know who listens to a kind of music not because they like but because its popular/unpopular.  How did you come to know their motivations?  That seems like a hard thing to discover, and it paints a strange picture: people torturing themselves by listening to music they don’t enjoy in an attempt to gain approval from their peers or whomever.  Surely, in the case of the hipsters, its not a great leap to think that, having found the music on the radio unimpressive, they went in search of something else?  If they discovered that for music to become mainstream it has to follow a certain format, and they decided they didn’t enjoy it, then it seems intuitive to actively seek music that is freed from that restraint.  

    And I thought that the whole point of escaping identification was to avoid the accusation of following a stereotype, to emphasize your own independence from culture’s influence. I assumed that if they felt this was just the same old clichè, they’d stop doing it..

    One thinks of a situation we’ve likely all seen, two hipsters angrily calling each other “hipster”.  I think there was an Onion article about that very scenario.  I won’t lie, I’m as confused (and upset) at hipsters’ inability to be honest with themselves about following trends and being part of a social/culture group.  

    >Your fears as to what will become of the poor youths caught up in a movement completely devoid of values and meaning are only valid if we’reworking with the assumption that hipsters have no values

    But I AM saying that, or rather.. I’m saying that, collectively, they have no shared values. Being a hipster is a neutral influence on their values.

    Well, that depends.  On the one hand, one can (people have, anyway) defined hipsters after WWII as “bohemian-minded middle-class people purposefully standing apart from the dominant trends, politics, and morals of their class”, which implies that they have values, morals, and political opinions.  As for modern hipsters, I frequently see a lot of anti-consumerist sentiment, along with anti-racist and homophobia.  There’s also a strong “green” streak, although how serious one is about that is hard to determine without getting to know them.  But there are morals and values, the question is whether being a hipster is truly a neutral influence on their values.  This a good question, and I’m not at all sure that it isn’t a neutral influence.  

    Compared to other subcultures, its certainly a much weaker influence.  Although the vast majority of hipsters are liberal a Republican hipster could still theoretically exist, which couldn’t be said of the Hippie movement.  Similarly, a racist or homophobic hipster is theoretically possible, although one would wonder why such a person would hang around the minorities and gays present in hipster social circles.

     I think one could count the fascination with bicycles as evidence of strong environmental values, or the attraction to organic and, more importantly, LOCAL foods as evidence of the same.  Shopping at thrift stores and being concerned about fair-trade companies, combined with an abhorrence for malls and places like that, can count as evidence of a trend towards anti-consumerism.   People always tell me “oh but they’re not doing that because its green/anti-consumerist, they’re just doing it because their friends are”, which is a.) impossible to determine, and b.) very unlikely that EVERYONE is doing it for those reasons.  Even if most of them are, is this a bad thing?  These are good habits, and many will keep them into adulthood.  Pretending all the beatniks and hippies were concerned with the ideologies these movements came to represent is, I think, wishful thinking.  

    As for your last paragraph, I’m reminded of the protests I’ve seen young adults organizing on college campuses.  That’s still alive, I promise you.  It may not come from Hipsterism, but is that really a bad thing?  Maybe its time for the youth to no longer get their anger, their desire to change, from the popular crowd.

  • Tuna Ghost

    Isn’t that part of the reason why they make fun of previous subcultures? … …Don’t they make fun of people listening to popular artists just because they’re popular, while at the same time doing the same, but in reverse? I mean even if they’re aware of the mechanism, it certainly doesn’t look like it, from their actions.

    If it is the reason, then they possess an insight I hadn’t thought them capable of.  As for the second point, is that really why they’re listening to that music?  That question goes for either group.  I honestly can’t think of anyone I know who listens to a kind of music not because they like but because its popular/unpopular.  How did you come to know their motivations?  That seems like a hard thing to discover, and it paints a strange picture: people torturing themselves by listening to music they don’t enjoy in an attempt to gain approval from their peers or whomever.  Surely, in the case of the hipsters, its not a great leap to think that, having found the music on the radio unimpressive, they went in search of something else?  If they discovered that for music to become mainstream it has to follow a certain format, and they decided they didn’t enjoy it, then it seems intuitive to actively seek music that is freed from that restraint.  

    And I thought that the whole point of escaping identification was to avoid the accusation of following a stereotype, to emphasize your own independence from culture’s influence. I assumed that if they felt this was just the same old clichè, they’d stop doing it..

    One thinks of a situation we’ve likely all seen, two hipsters angrily calling each other “hipster”.  I think there was an Onion article about that very scenario.  I won’t lie, I’m as confused (and upset) at hipsters’ inability to be honest with themselves about following trends and being part of a social/culture group.  

    >Your fears as to what will become of the poor youths caught up in a movement completely devoid of values and meaning are only valid if we’reworking with the assumption that hipsters have no values

    But I AM saying that, or rather.. I’m saying that, collectively, they have no shared values. Being a hipster is a neutral influence on their values.

    Well, that depends.  On the one hand, one can (people have, anyway) defined hipsters after WWII as “bohemian-minded middle-class people purposefully standing apart from the dominant trends, politics, and morals of their class”, which implies that they have values, morals, and political opinions.  As for modern hipsters, I frequently see a lot of anti-consumerist sentiment, along with anti-racist and homophobia.  There’s also a strong “green” streak, although how serious one is about that is hard to determine without getting to know them.  But there are morals and values, the question is whether being a hipster is truly a neutral influence on their values.  This a good question, and I’m not at all sure that it isn’t a neutral influence.  

    Compared to other subcultures, its certainly a much weaker influence.  Although the vast majority of hipsters are liberal a Republican hipster could still theoretically exist, which couldn’t be said of the Hippie movement.  Similarly, a racist or homophobic hipster is theoretically possible, although one would wonder why such a person would hang around the minorities and gays present in hipster social circles.

     I think one could count the fascination with bicycles as evidence of strong environmental values, or the attraction to organic and, more importantly, LOCAL foods as evidence of the same.  Shopping at thrift stores and being concerned about fair-trade companies, combined with an abhorrence for malls and places like that, can count as evidence of a trend towards anti-consumerism.   People always tell me “oh but they’re not doing that because its green/anti-consumerist, they’re just doing it because their friends are”, which is a.) impossible to determine, and b.) very unlikely that EVERYONE is doing it for those reasons.  Even if most of them are, is this a bad thing?  These are good habits, and many will keep them into adulthood.  Pretending all the beatniks and hippies were concerned with the ideologies these movements came to represent is, I think, wishful thinking.  

    As for your last paragraph, I’m reminded of the protests I’ve seen young adults organizing on college campuses.  That’s still alive, I promise you.  It may not come from Hipsterism, but is that really a bad thing?  Maybe its time for the youth to no longer get their anger, their desire to change, from the popular crowd.

  • Tuna Ghost

    not necessarily.  In Part 2, I’m going to present the problems one runs into when using an expressionist theory of art, things like: what about actors?  What about people who work on commission?  

  • Anonymous

    Tuna firstly let me say great article.

    Secondly, i while generally accept the label of “hipster” for myself: my jeans are japanese, raw and low, and my sound is underground hip hop not indie rock.

    but boy, do i love me some plaid workmen’s shirts;)

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/UQGZN5E3I2OREWD45JE2RTZMJY BrianD

    the problem is that hipsters — and almost all Americans — are a bunch of anti-intellectual corporate stooges who fulfill the meaninglessness in their lives with irony and consumer fetishism.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/UQGZN5E3I2OREWD45JE2RTZMJY BrianD

    the problem is that hipsters — and almost all Americans — are a bunch of anti-intellectual corporate stooges who fulfill the meaninglessness in their lives with irony and consumer fetishism.

  • Anonymous

    I agree, but it’s a rather inaccessible esoteric argument, you are NOT wrong, but i think [some] people will have a difficulty grasping at such a cerebral concept.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/UQGZN5E3I2OREWD45JE2RTZMJY BrianD

    do you hear yourself? we’re “anti-consumerist” but, man, we go out of our way to find some skinny jeans…. doesn’t sound like anti-consumerism to me.

  • Tuna Ghost

    huh, Japan was where I first started dressing hipster.  I guess it shouldn’t surprise me that the US is behind the rest of the world when it comes to fashion.

  • Tuna Ghost

    you…you don’t know what “anti-consumerism” means, do you

  • Seamus Dubh
  • Seamus Dubh
  • Anonymous

    hey buddy i  was wearing evisu’s since highschool:P

  • Anonymous

    hey buddy i  was wearing evisu’s since highschool:P

  • Anonymous

    hey buddy i  was wearing evisu’s since highschool:P

  • Ekskn-3

    They are fake as much as they consume “hippie””indie” or “grunge” as a culture and do not have their own soul. It is like twilight kids who copy goth style into commercialised. So as far as they have no political and social agenda they are just good capitalists. Good luck them all, it is cool to be cool but it is sad to think that you can buy it.

  • Ekskn-3

    They are fake as much as they consume “hippie””indie” or “grunge” as a culture and do not have their own soul. It is like twilight kids who copy goth style into commercialised. So as far as they have no political and social agenda they are just good capitalists. Good luck them all, it is cool to be cool but it is sad to think that you can buy it.

    • http://twitter.com/ericschiller Eric Schiller

      Exactly. The notion that hipsters are anti-capitalists is bullshit.  Hipsters are capitalists in their most purest form, they are the anti-intellectual elite proto-capitalists of our age by denying, then fully reasserting the strength of capitalism.

      • Tuna Ghost

        I’m not seeing where this charge of “anti-intellectualism” is coming from.  Can you elaborate?  And how do they deny capitalism?  How do they re-assert the strength of it?  How are any of these criticisms not baseless assumptions on the motives of hipsters, or based on faulty reasoning such as the one you employed a bit further up?

        • http://twitter.com/ericschiller Eric Schiller

          These criticisms are not “baseless assumptions on the motives of hipsters” because they are analyses of how hipsters act and affect culture.  In what place do I claim what the “motives” of hipsters are whatsoever? 

          In order for you to demonstrate “faulty reasoning” you actually have to show a fallacy.  Telling me that I had faulty reasoning does not suffice.  That is anti-intellectualism.  Anti-intellectualism is claiming that you have an argument, but don’t actually have reasoning to back it up.   Hipsterism takes this shape often.  It is about appearing intellectual, but not actually being intellectual.  In effect, many hipsters are an anti-intellectual elite, they ultimately reject the intellectual ethos of analysis and constant questioning for simply choosing anything that they can claim ‘the best’.

          • Tuna Ghost

            My bad, I had thought you were using anti-intellectual in the sense Larry the Cable Guy is accused of being “anti-intellectual”, e.g. charging college educated people of “elitism” and whatnot.  

            In what place do I claim what the “motives” of hipsters are whatsoever?

            It definitely equates possessions with personal happiness by putting such a huge emphasis on them.

            If hipsters truly didn’t equate happiness with their clothes, bikes, or beer tastes, then they would make much more bland and utilitarian choices.

            While implying that they don’t care what others think, they demonstrate that they *actually* do by how much effort they put in.

            These are criticisms I often hear from people who don’t actually know or interact with any hipsters.

          • http://twitter.com/ericschiller Eric Schiller

            Is that all you have? Implying that I don’t know or interact with hipsters is irrelevant and fallacious. And FYI, that’s not true.

            Also, you are just affirming a fallacious elitism here. ‘If you knew hipsters, you would UNDERSTAND!’

          • Tuna Ghost

            Stop acting like you didn’t know those were examples of you making baseless assumptions.  I was pointing out that people who don’t know or interact with hipsters are the people I most often see making the same kind of assumptions, as you well understood.  

          • http://twitter.com/ericschiller Eric Schiller

            Your ‘logic’ eludes me.  Good luck with that.

          • Supes

            Its easy to be a ballsy smart ass and argue invalid points when your anon like tuna ghost and me. At least your a real person Eric.

          • Ekskn-3

            I am the poster of the original comment above. You fail to show me how does a hipster aims to create a better society? because they don’t. they consume everything living in the end times out of sheer nihilistic desire. Lovely folks!

            Sorry but there is no fucking assumption in here, until defeated hippies were a movement to get out of capitalist shit, at least remember vietnam war, Hipsters on the other hand is a movement to get into capitalist shit as much as possible. Oh consume consume consume! 
            You obviously have time and money to design yourself a fake outer persona while people suffer on ghettos and suburbs. Be reel and connect with people from every social strata, you are the elitist one. Speak with the woman that comes to clean your house while you are busy with your expensive gigs and concerts.I understand that you love being cool and trendy but maybe instead if you read a little bit news and see what is happening around you, in your community, in your world. SO you can make up a real persona in these happenings instead of a fake one that is “designed one” with a lot of $$$$$good luck with that.

          • Tuna Ghost

            yeah, you’re totally not making assumptions about people’s lives or motivations.  

            Not at all.

  • http://twitter.com/ericschiller Eric Schiller

    You don’t seem to either ‘Tuna’…

    If you are going to argue an opposing point, it helps if you explain what you mean.

    “Anti-consumerism refers to the socio-political movement against the equating of personal happiness with consumption and the purchase of material possessions”

    It seems that BrianD is spot on.

  • http://twitter.com/ericschiller Eric Schiller

    Exactly. The notion that hipsters are anti-capitalists is bullshit.  Hipsters are capitalists in their most purest form, they are the anti-intellectual elite proto-capitalists of our age by denying, then fully reasserting the strength of capitalism.

  • Tuna Ghost

    Simply having a particular taste in fashion doesn’t equate to personal happiness in purchasing those items.  I would have thought that was obvious.

  • Tuna Ghost

    I’m not seeing where this charge of “anti-intellectualism” is coming from.  Can you elaborate?  And how do they deny capitalism?  How do they re-assert the strength of it?  How are any of these criticisms not baseless assumptions on the motives of hipsters, or based on faulty reasoning such as the one you employed a bit further up?

  • Tuna Ghost

    I’m not seeing where this charge of “anti-intellectualism” is coming from.  Can you elaborate?  And how do they deny capitalism?  How do they re-assert the strength of it?  How are any of these criticisms not baseless assumptions on the motives of hipsters, or based on faulty reasoning such as the one you employed a bit further up?

  • http://twitter.com/ericschiller Eric Schiller

    Tuna, most of your responses seem to be weak attacks at generalizations.  Do you actually have any reasoning?

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=708760058 Paqui Persea

    I’m born and raised poor, never having seen the middle class in my entire life, in fact the closest I’ve gotten is my girlfriend’s family.

    Since I’m a REAL born and raised prole with no understanding of what these faggots’ fascination with my family’s blue collar lifestyle is, I can tell you that hipsters are in fact annoying as hell. The biggest problem is me trying to stop myself from removing their cloth constricted testicles with my bare hands and shoving them up their tight ass for looking down their nose at people who aren’t as “hip” as they are. All I can hope is that those tight tight pants will eventually destroy their ability to create offspring.

    That being said – as someone who’s a member of the local metal and punk scene and has love for any progressive or experimental music and as someone who’s also a musician, I appreciate the fact that hipsters provide a way for obscure art and media to be marketable and enjoy some moderate success.

    If you would shut the hell up about this band who’s “first album was better than their first album” that we’ve “probably never heard of”..people would stop wanting to stab you for once. The next time one of you does this in my presence it’ll be met with a long list of local metal and punk bands you’ve never heard of who’s members I’m actually close personal friends with.

    By the way, in case you haven’t noticed..proles have a natural propensity for rage (pretty sure it has to do with the fact that we’ve tried a lot in life and either unintentionally fucked it up and got screwed over) and along with that comes the urge to be violent. Be careful not confuse another hipster with a real working class person or you might get dragged out in the street.

    Actually..

    Just do me a huge favor hipsters – don’t talk to me. You can breathe the same air as the rest of us human beings but stop talking to us. Mingle amongst yourselves. Also, if you bitch about the mosh pits, don’t come to the shows..or just stop bitching..because all it makes us want to do is drag you in and introduce you to thrashing the hard way.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=708760058 Paqui Persea

    I was born and raised poor, never having seen the middle class in my entire life, in fact the closest I’ve gotten to ever seeing the middle class is my girlfriend’s family.

    Since I’m a REAL born and raised prole with no understanding of what these faggots’ fascination with my family’s blue collar lifestyle is, I can tell you that hipsters are in fact annoying as hell. The biggest problem is me trying to stop myself from removing their cloth constricted testicles with my bare hands and shoving them up their tight ass for looking down their nose at people who aren’t as “hip” as they are. All I can hope is that those tight tight pants will eventually destroy their ability to create offspring.

    That being said – as someone who’s a member of the local metal and punk scene and has love for any progressive or experimental music and as someone who’s also a musician, I appreciate the fact that hipsters provide a way for obscure art and media to be marketable and enjoy some moderate success.

    That being said…

    If you would shut the hell up about this band who’s “first album was better than their first album” that we’ve “probably never heard of”..people would stop wanting to stab you for once. The next time one of you does this in my presence it’ll be met with a long list of local metal and punk bands (potentially some folk artists) you’ve never heard of who’s members I’m actually close personal friends with.

    By the way, in case you haven’t noticed..proles have a natural propensity for rage (pretty sure it has to do with the fact that we’ve tried a lot in life and either unintentionally fucked it up and got screwed over) and along with that comes the urge to be violent. Be careful not to confuse another hipster with a real working class person or you might get dragged out in the street.

    Actually..

    Just do me a huge favor hipsters, don’t talk to me. You can breathe the same air as the rest of us human beings but stop talking to us. Mingle amongst yourselves. Also, if you bitch about the mosh pits, don’t come to the shows..or just stop bitching..because all it makes us want to do is drag you in and introduce you to thrashing the hard way.

    • Tuna Ghost

      Here’s a helpful hint, fella–when attempting to elaborate a point, avoid using hatespeech.  It just makes everyone think you’re a closet case.  

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=708760058 Paqui Persea

        Here’s a helpful hint cracka ass cracka, eat balls.

        I’m a gender queer, not straight, and I’m in a relationship with a bi-racial gender queer and biological female whom I love and respect.

        Maybe you didn’t realize that the term “faggot” is being used in the pejorative sense for someone who’s a feeble douchebag that no one honestly likes.

        That’s right, the queer is using a term originally popularized to insult him and his lover’s sexual identities as an insult for people that are annoying and..well..fake. How IRONIC is that?

        • Tuna Ghost

          Hey, it sounded like hate-speech so I called it out.  That’s all, bub.  

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=708760058 Paqui Persea

            Fair enough, skippy.

          • Cannedazz

            In the internetz.. the first yell..HITLER.or.RACIST.. Loses the argument forever..period. These annoying red herring ad hominem attacks are played out….. PEAZE!

      • StillAtMyMoms

        Tuna Ghost, you are losing ground when you have to respond to every single opposing comment about your article.  Leave it be.  Otherwise you’re looking pathetic for having to justify and argue every minute point someone brings to mind.  Face it, you’re a hipster in denial.  OMG, I own an old Silverado and listen to Hall and Oates on the tape deck?  Does that make me a hipster?  Hipsterism is a very vague term and I should have articulated it better in my long comment from last night.  But seriously, you’re starting to sound like a whiny insecure bitch.  Let the article speak for itself.  You’re going to have haters no matter what.

        • Tuna Ghost

          Whoa guy!  I wrote this exactly because I wanted to get a discussion going, and I certainly want to be part of that discussion.  I wanted a back-and-forth, that’s how we learn and sharpen our ideas and whatnot.  Unfortunately this article generated far more posts than I will ever be able to respond to, but this, this here in the comments section, is exactly what I wanted to happen.  I’ve had to refine my views because of the discussions I’ve had here, and that is precisely what I (and I think all writers on subjects in this field) need.

    • nevertrusta3sum

      I want to hang out with you. You’ve hit the nail on the head with this awesome rant..

    • Chris Mounce

      I think I had beer with you in Milwaukee if not next beer is on me Paqui. Your choice Miller or Riverwest micro-brew – cheap but doesn’t taste like piss.

  • http://twitter.com/ericschiller Eric Schiller

    Hipsterism goes far beyond “simply having a particular taste in fashion.”  Hipsterism is obsessed with it to the point that they drive brands in new and horrifying directions.  It definitely equates possessions with personal happiness by putting such a huge emphasis on them.  While it is popular to claim that its for “ironic” reasons, or that they really don’t care, that simply is not true.  The very core of hipsterism is consumption.  If hipsters truly didn’t equate happiness with their clothes, bikes, or beer tastes, then they would make much more bland and utilitarian choices.    While implying that they don’t care what others think, they demonstrate that they *actually* do by how much effort they put in.  

  • Tuna Ghost

    …so you’re not going to answer the questions or address the topics raised?  How very revealing.

  • http://twitter.com/ericschiller Eric Schiller

    Talk about taking me out of context.  I posted that before you responded to any comments.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=708760058 Paqui Persea

    Another thing – continue to buy clothes that clash horribly and are quite hideous, because if I catch one of you buying clothes at my thrift stores that I would much rather have and can actually afford there, I’m going to drag you out back and piss all over you like your daddy (that either loved you too much or not enough) did to that random homeless guy the day he went and set up your trust fund.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=708760058 Paqui Persea

    Another thing – continue to buy clothes that clash horribly and are quite hideous, because if I catch one of you buying clothes at my thrift stores that I would much rather have and can actually afford there, I’m going to drag you out back and piss all over you like your daddy (that either loved you too much or not enough) did to that random homeless guy the day he went and set up your trust fund.

    • Tuna Ghost

      *between mouthfuls of piss* I just wanted some cheap pants that don’t have pleats!  

  • Tuna Ghost

    Here’s a helpful hint, fella–when attempting to elaborate a point, avoid using hatespeech.  It just makes everyone think you’re a closet case.  

  • http://twitter.com/ericschiller Eric Schiller

    These criticisms are not “baseless assumptions on the motives of hipsters” because they are analyses of how hipsters act and affect culture.  In what place do I claim what the “motives” of hipsters are whatsoever? 

    In order for you to demonstrate “faulty reasoning” you actually have to show a fallacy.  Telling me that I had faulty reasoning does not suffice.  That is anti-intellectualism.  Anti-intellectualism is claiming that you have an argument, but don’t actually have reasoning to back it up.   Hipsterism takes this shape often.  It is about appearing intellectual, but not actually being intellectual.  In effect, many hipsters are an anti-intellectual elite because they ultimately reject the intellectual ethos of analysis and constant questioning for simply choosing anything.

  • Jiggakilla666

     I dont care about this stupid article or hipsters but all this PBR bashing is pissing me off.

  • Jiggakilla666

     I dont care about this stupid article or hipsters but all this PBR bashing is pissing me off.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=708760058 Paqui Persea

    Solution –

    1. Top a high proof liquor bottle with an oily rag
    2. Throw bottle into theater.
    3. Block escape routes
    4. Laugh maniacally at their screams
    5. Realize that their screams are ironic as screaming is a pretty mainstream thing to do when on fire.
    6. ????
    7. PROFIT

  • http://www.raptitude.com David Cain

    “…view sincerity as a social taboo.”

    Ah! That’s it. I could not put my finger on my problem with hipsters until right now.

  • Tuna Ghost

    very well, show me an example of a response being a “weak attack at generalizations”.

  • Tuna Ghost

    My bad, I had thought you were using anti-intellectual in the sense Larry the Cable Guy is accused of being “anti-intellectual”, e.g. charging college educated people of “elitism” and whatnot.  

    In what place do I claim what the “motives” of hipsters are whatsoever?

    It definitely equates possessions with personal happiness by putting such a huge emphasis on them.

    If hipsters truly didn’t equate happiness with their clothes, bikes, or beer tastes, then they would make much more bland and utilitarian choices.

    While implying that they don’t care what others think, they demonstrate that they *actually* do by how much effort they put in.

    These are criticisms I often hear from people who don’t actually know or interact with any hipsters.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=708760058 Paqui Persea

    Here’s a helpful hint cracka ass cracka, eat balls.

    I’m a gender queer, not straight, and I’m in a relationship with a bi-racial gender queer and biological female whom I love and respect.

    Maybe you didn’t realize that the term “faggot” is being used in the pejorative sense for someone who’s a feeble douchebag that no one honestly likes.

    That’s right, the queer is using a term originally popularized to insult him and his lover’s sexual identities as an insult for people that are annoying and..well..fake. How IRONIC is that?

  • http://twitter.com/ericschiller Eric Schiller

    Is that all you have? Implying that I don’t know or interact with hipsters is irrelevant and fallacious. And FYI, that’s not true.

    Also, you are just affirming a fallacious elitism here. ‘If you knew hipsters, you would UNDERSTAND!’

  • chaz

    I just think they look annoying.  And I enjoy making fun of them.  That’s all.

  • chaz

    I just think they look annoying.  And I enjoy making fun of them.  That’s all.

  • chaz

    I just think they look annoying.  And I enjoy making fun of them.  That’s all.

  • Tuna Ghost

    Hipsterism is obsessed with it to the point that they drive brands in new and horrifying directions.
    What exactly do you mean by this?  What brands?  Would an example of this be American Apparel putting out those hideous tiny neon shorts for men because some hipsters were seen wearing them (do they have those in the states yet?  I’m way across the globe)?  And how is this any different than goths and stores like Hot Topic?  

    It definitely equates possessions with personal happiness by putting such a huge emphasis on them.

    Again you’re equating an interest in fashion with consumerism or materialism.  I really don’t think that’s a fair charge.  Are you going to make this same charge against every subculture that has a particular fashion style?  

    While it is popular to claim that its for “ironic” reasons, or that they really don’t care, that simply is not true.

    I can’t deny the charge of being disingenuous about the not caring bit (of they care what they wear, everyone does), but how do you know they’re not wearing it for ironic reasons?   This is what I’m talking about when I say you’re making baseless assumptions on their motivations.  Some people enjoy irony, some people enjoy affectations.  

    If hipsters truly didn’t equate happiness with their clothes, bikes, or beer tastes, then they would make much more bland and utilitarian choices.

    Oh, that’s a load and you know it.  That charge can be made against practically anyone.  I refuse to believe you wear what you wear for strictly utilitarian reasons.  

  • Tuna Ghost

    Hey, it sounded like hate-speech so I called it out.  That’s all, bub.  

  • Tuna Ghost

    Hey, it sounded like hate-speech so I called it out.  That’s all, bub.  

  • Tuna Ghost

    Hey, it sounded like hate-speech so I called it out.  That’s all, bub.  

  • Tuna Ghost

    Stop acting like you didn’t know those were examples of you making baseless assumptions.  I was pointing out that people who don’t know or interact with hipsters are the people I most often see making the same kind of assumptions, as you well understood.  

  • Tuna Ghost

    Stop acting like you didn’t know those were examples of you making baseless assumptions.  I was pointing out that people who don’t know or interact with hipsters are the people I most often see making the same kind of assumptions, as you well understood.  

  • Tuna Ghost

    Stop acting like you didn’t know those were examples of you making baseless assumptions.  I was pointing out that people who don’t know or interact with hipsters are the people I most often see making the same kind of assumptions, as you well understood.  

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=708760058 Paqui Persea

    Fair enough, skippy.

  • Tuna Ghost

    *between mouthfuls of piss* I just wanted some cheap pants that don’t have pleats!  

  • Daniel Rodriguez

    At least you aren’t justifying juggalos.

  • Tuna Ghost

    It definitely equates possessions with personal happiness by putting such a huge emphasis on them.
    This upsets me more and more every time I see it.  That charge can be made against teddy-bear collectors, model train hobbyists, or people who collect anything at all.  To call that “materialism” is ridiculous.  

  • Daniel Rodriguez

    At least you aren’t justifying juggalos.

    • Tuna Ghost

      To be fair, they did recently pelt Tia Tequila with bottles and rocks and booed her offstage at a recent gathering.  Their stock rose a few points in several people’s books after that.

    • Chris Mounce

      What you ain’t down with the dark carnival of souls bro?

  • Workingclass

    If you like things in an ironic way, that implies that people who actually like them are somehow inferior to you. No one likes to be inferior.

  • Workingclass

    If you like things in an ironic way, that implies that people who actually like them are somehow inferior to you. No one likes to be inferior.

  • Azathoth

    >I won’t lie, I’m as confused (and upset) at hipsters’ inability to be
    honest with themselves about following trends and being part of a
    social/culture group.

    But that’s what I was saying. They’re convinced that since they constantly change and are never precisely defined/identified, they’re not *really* following a trend, while they’re actually following the sub-culture trend in its purest form: the trend of not following any trend. It’s like they don’t even realize that this is the exact sentiment that fueled every other counter-culture trend before them and that they mock so much.

    Maybe this is just the result of what teenage rebellion looks like when it’s born in a society without any defined, simple “evil” to stand up against, apart from the obvious ones, like (as you said) corporatism and mindless hate-mongering. Although now that I think about it, you could say that every sub-culture since the 90s was born in basically the same conditions, and maybe they just got fed up with moping around.

    >It may not come from Hipsterism, but is that really a bad thing?  Maybe
    its time for the youth to no longer get their anger, their desire to
    change, from the popular crowd.

    Well sure, ideally that would be the best, but if a cultural trend is behind it, it can always help, even just with sheer numbers. A cultural movement is also useful because it helps focusing the attention of many people on one issue, and in this age of diminishing attention spans, it’s really something we need, badly.

  • Azathoth

    >I won’t lie, I’m as confused (and upset) at hipsters’ inability to be
    honest with themselves about following trends and being part of a
    social/culture group.

    But that’s what I was saying. They’re convinced that since they constantly change and are never precisely defined/identified, they’re not *really* following a trend, while they’re actually following the sub-culture trend in its purest form: the trend of not following any trend. It’s like they don’t even realize that this is the exact sentiment that fueled every other counter-culture trend before them and that they mock so much.

    Maybe this is just the result of what teenage rebellion looks like when it’s born in a society without any defined, simple “evil” to stand up against, apart from the obvious ones, like (as you said) corporatism and mindless hate-mongering. Although now that I think about it, you could say that every sub-culture since the 90s was born in basically the same conditions, and maybe they just got fed up with moping around.

    >It may not come from Hipsterism, but is that really a bad thing?  Maybe
    its time for the youth to no longer get their anger, their desire to
    change, from the popular crowd.

    Well sure, ideally that would be the best, but if a cultural trend is behind it, it can always help, even just with sheer numbers. A cultural movement is also useful because it helps focusing the attention of many people on one issue, and in this age of diminishing attention spans, it’s really something we need, badly.

  • Azathoth

    >I won’t lie, I’m as confused (and upset) at hipsters’ inability to be
    honest with themselves about following trends and being part of a
    social/culture group.

    But that’s what I was saying. They’re convinced that since they constantly change and are never precisely defined/identified, they’re not *really* following a trend, while they’re actually following the sub-culture trend in its purest form: the trend of not following any trend. It’s like they don’t even realize that this is the exact sentiment that fueled every other counter-culture trend before them and that they mock so much.

    Maybe this is just the result of what teenage rebellion looks like when it’s born in a society without any defined, simple “evil” to stand up against, apart from the obvious ones, like (as you said) corporatism and mindless hate-mongering. Although now that I think about it, you could say that every sub-culture since the 90s was born in basically the same conditions, and maybe they just got fed up with moping around.

    >It may not come from Hipsterism, but is that really a bad thing?  Maybe
    its time for the youth to no longer get their anger, their desire to
    change, from the popular crowd.

    Well sure, ideally that would be the best, but if a cultural trend is behind it, it can always help, even just with sheer numbers. A cultural movement is also useful because it helps focusing the attention of many people on one issue, and in this age of diminishing attention spans, it’s really something we need, badly.

  • StillAtMyMoms

    The best explanation I’ve read about a hipster.  Kudos.  Reasoning with a hipster is like an atheist reasoning with a Christian anyways, they will always be in denial and never look themselves in the mirror and realize how full of shit they are in reality.

  • http://www.facebook.com/Carlospanzram Carlos Panzram

    When did having fun get so serious? Let the kids have their fun. All your costumes are meaningless, it is only your own bad wiring that makes it seem otherwise. I think that many people in this generation are finally grasping that. I think the “Irony” in “hipster fashion” is a sign of that. I’m not certain that everyone labeled a hipster has thought out the philosophical implications of their dress, as well they shouldn’t, because they are to busy enjoying themselves. People guard their “hipness” with their lives, one of the things I enjoy about this younger generation is their complete willingness to embrace the ridiculous costuming of previous subcultures and remix them. We are giving birth to the first truly post-modern subculture. More than mocking “hipsters” its much more fun to watch people with the old mindsets sneer and cling to their “cool” while simultaneously hurling it out to attack others, never to realize that soon they will have none of it left. 
     

  • http://www.facebook.com/Carlospanzram Carlos Panzram

    When did having fun get so serious? Let the kids have their fun. All your costumes are meaningless, it is only your own bad wiring that makes it seem otherwise. I think that many people in this generation are finally grasping that. I think the “Irony” in “hipster fashion” is a sign of that. I’m not certain that everyone labeled a hipster has thought out the philosophical implications of their dress, as well they shouldn’t, because they are to busy enjoying themselves. People guard their “hipness” with their lives, one of the things I enjoy about this younger generation is their complete willingness to embrace the ridiculous costuming of previous subcultures and remix them. We are giving birth to the first truly post-modern subculture. More than mocking “hipsters” its much more fun to watch people with the old mindsets sneer and cling to their “cool” while simultaneously hurling it out to attack others, never to realize that soon they will have none of it left. 
     

  • http://www.facebook.com/Carlospanzram Carlos Panzram

    When did having fun get so serious? Let the kids have their fun. All your costumes are meaningless, it is only your own bad wiring that makes it seem otherwise. I think that many people in this generation are finally grasping that. I think the “Irony” in “hipster fashion” is a sign of that. I’m not certain that everyone labeled a hipster has thought out the philosophical implications of their dress, as well they shouldn’t, because they are to busy enjoying themselves. People guard their “hipness” with their lives, one of the things I enjoy about this younger generation is their complete willingness to embrace the ridiculous costuming of previous subcultures and remix them. We are giving birth to the first truly post-modern subculture. More than mocking “hipsters” its much more fun to watch people with the old mindsets sneer and cling to their “cool” while simultaneously hurling it out to attack others, never to realize that soon they will have none of it left. 
     

  • Carlos Panzram

    When did having fun get so serious? Let the kids have their fun. All your costumes are meaningless, it is only your own bad wiring that makes it seem otherwise. I think that many people in this generation are finally grasping that. I think the “Irony” in “hipster fashion” is a sign of that. I’m not certain that everyone labeled a hipster has thought out the philosophical implications of their dress, as well they shouldn’t, because they are to busy enjoying themselves. People guard their “hipness” with their lives, one of the things I enjoy about this younger generation is their complete willingness to embrace the ridiculous costuming of previous subcultures and remix them. We are giving birth to the first truly post-modern subculture. More than mocking “hipsters” its much more fun to watch people with the old mindsets sneer and cling to their “cool” while simultaneously hurling it out to attack others, never to realize that soon they will have none of it left. 
     

    • StillAtMyMoms

      The problem with hipsterism is that it doesn’t view itself as a fad but rather as a lifestyle.  It’s really self-denial or an absolute form of insecurity.  It’s completely bullshit of pseudo intellectuals feeling obligated to become apathetic on the basis of conformity.  “I think I’m not going to give a shit, but check out this Paula Abdul cassette I found in my basement!”  The only merit they have is giving a cultural paradox for our generation.  They’re what I’d like to call an earthy version of the freaks you remember in high school–except they do it because it’s currently cool.  Plus the freaks, goths, alternative kids, metal heads had legitimate reason for their tastes in fashion and the arts because, as many people said in this board, it is a genuine form of self-expression.  They do it because they truly like it; not because of the novelty (albeit high school kids being the exception of course).  Hipsters are nonetheless attention-seekers.  Seriously, they buy PBR out of their own pockets just to make a statement?  Who genuinely enjoys drinking that nasty old man shit?  If they were so non-conformist; they wouldn’t vote for Obama or purchase pre-designed merchandise just to make a statement of their conformity.  THEY ARE NOT UNIQUE.  A TREND, BAR NONE.

      • Carlos Panzram

        More than mocking “hipsters” its much more fun to watch people with the old mindsets sneer and cling to their “cool” while simultaneously hurling it out to attack others, never to realize that soon they will have none of it left. 

  • Tuna Ghost

    To be fair, they did recently pelt Tia Tequila with bottles and rocks and booed her offstage at a recent gathering.  Their stock rose a few points in several people’s books after that.

  • Tuna Ghost

    To be fair, they did recently pelt Tia Tequila with bottles and rocks and booed her offstage at a recent gathering.  Their stock rose a few points in several people’s books after that.

  • Tuna Ghost

    To be fair, they did recently pelt Tia Tequila with bottles and rocks and booed her offstage at a recent gathering.  Their stock rose a few points in several people’s books after that.

  • respect cult
  • respect cult
  • StillAtMyMoms

    Tuna Ghost, you are losing ground when you have to respond to every single opposing comment about your article.  Leave it be.  Otherwise you’re looking pathetic for having to justify and argue every minute point someone brings to mind.  Face it, you’re a hipster in denial.  OMG, I own an old Silverado and listen to Hall and Oates on the tape deck?  Does that make me a hipster?  Hipsterism is a very vague term and I should have articulated it better in my long comment from last night.  But seriously, you’re starting to sound like a whiny insecure bitch.  Let the article speak for itself.  You’re going to have haters no matter what.

  • Anonymous

    The Hipster Manifesto. You’ve outdone yourself Tuna Ghost, and I’m out like a trout.

  • Redacted

    The Hipster Manifesto. You’ve outdone yourself Tuna Ghost, and I’m out like a trout.

    • Suckmytree

      Out of the closet finally. Maybe you’ll quit being a monkey poser bitch now.

      • Redacted

        Cool story bro

  • Ediesuperstar

    af·fec·ta·tion (fk-tshn)
    KEY

    NOUN:

    A show, pretense, or display.

    Behavior that is assumed rather than natural; artificiality.
    A particular habit, as of speech or dress, adopted to give a false
    impression.

  • StillAtMyMoms

    Do you have a sense of humor, Tuna?  Or is it so dry that I cannot even interpret it because I’m out of the scene?

  • Anonymous

    Don’t hate the players (‘hipsters’), hate the game (postmodernism).

  • JoiquimCouteau

    Don’t hate the players (‘hipsters’), hate the game (postmodernism).

  • LaCervezaMasFina

    “Simply having a particular taste in fashion doesn’t equate to personal
    happiness in purchasing those items.  I would have thought that was
    obvious”

    Okay. I gotta call bullshit on this.
    Having any taste in any fashion AT ALL is STILL buying into consumerist culture. It’s hard to believe that if you were somehow disallowed from ever wearing your particular “hipster uniform” again it wouldn’t effect your happiness or even make you downright upset.

    I’ll admit it: I used to be goth as fuck back in the day when it was far less mainstream. I would even spew out the same old “We’re different! We’re anti-consumerism! We’re non-conformists!” trope that every sub-culture has repeated through the ages. Then I started to realize; black velvet, black lace, black eyeliner, white face; we WERE all conformists. Some of us would spend god-awful amounts of money just to get that one piece for our wardrobe that would help us better fit into our “gothic uniform.”  We WERE consumerists. And what was even worse was that the same “mainstream” that we had so maligned before was making money off of us not being able to see that we were all exactly the same.

    You mention collectors further down and I think that’s a particularly weak analogy. You’re collecting aesthetics, they’re collecting teddy bears (or Beanie Babies). It’s still material things. It’s STILL materialism. You can even call it a fetish. How often does any collector willingly give up their collection or sell it off to raise money for something non-materialistic like, say, educating/feeding/housing the underprivileged? Not very often.

  • Mr Willow

    And how is this any different than goths and stores like Hot Topic?

    Aside from the fact that (especially old school/traditional) goths don’t like, respect, or want to be associated with stores like Hot Topic? Nothing really. 

    Goths find much more enjoyment finding things in thrift stores that have wear and age, or very basic things in Target and then modifying them themselves. Sew a patch on, put a logo, put some feathers on the shoulders of an old jacket, fix a ripped seam with safety pins. They don’t want to go into a store that has everything already stitched together for them. There isn’t any effort, and more importantly, everyone will look more or less the same, because there would have been some designer who decided that Siouxsie and the Banshees should be splashed across the back of a jacket, where would be be the fun, enjoyment, or chance to identify yourself as unique (while still being goth because nearly everything is black) in that? 

    To put it more simply: goths don’t want to walk into a store to find a shirt that is pre-shredded.

    Also, most (again, especially old school) goths don’t really like what goth is identified as today anyway. PVC trench coats, (mens) shirts with cinches in the back, and those god-awful platform boots, where everyone identifies Marilyn Manson as being the quintessential goth. I personally despise modern ‘goth’ æsthetic, and I’m twenty-three for christ-sakes. 

    What ‘goth’ should look like: http://fuckyeahgoths.tumblr.com/ (go in about ten pages at least)

    Notice, no trench-coats, little eyeliner, no platform boots. Just Black. Simple.  Minimalistic. 

    That was goth before it was turned into a brand.

  • http://twitter.com/ericschiller Eric Schiller

    Your ‘logic’ eludes me.  Good luck with that.

  • http://twitter.com/ericschiller Eric Schiller

    The problem with hipsterism is not that it’s inauthentic, ‘ironic’, ugly, elitist, or anything in the field of how it relates to other cultures.  The problem with hipsterism is that it doesn’t have a response or a cultural force.  It is a shallow distraction for the nation’s adult children, too obsessed with novelty to pay attention to what is happening around them in the country and the world.  

    This article, with it’s poor writing and incomplete thoughts, reads more like an apology for hipsterism rather than a justification for it.  

    With that in mind, I suggest reading Zizek’s take on hipsterism: http://www.generationbubble.com/2009/10/21/apoc-ellipsis-slavoj-zizek-on-hipsters-a-translation/

  • http://twitter.com/ericschiller Eric Schiller

    The problem with hipsterism is not that it’s inauthentic, ‘ironic’, ugly, elitist, or anything in the field of how it relates to other cultures.  The problem with hipsterism is that it doesn’t have a response or a cultural force.  It is a shallow distraction for the nation’s adult children, too obsessed with novelty to pay attention to what is happening around them in the country and the world.  Hipsterism then is a symptom of a much larger cultural problem.

    This article, with it’s poor writing and incomplete thoughts, reads more like an apology for hipsterism rather than a justification for it.

    With that in mind, I suggest reading Zizek’s take on hipsterism: http://www.generationbubble.com/2009/10/21/apoc-ellipsis-slavoj-zizek-on-hipsters-a-translation/

    • Tuna Ghost

      This article, with it’s poor writing and incomplete thoughts, reads more like an apology for hipsterism rather than a justification for it. 

      That’s the third time you’ve done that.  Are you going to point out any of these incomplete thoughts or examples of poor writing, or are we just supposed to take your word for it?

      The problem with hipsterism is that it doesn’t have a response or a cultural force.  It is a shallow distraction for the nation’s adult children, too obsessed with novelty to pay attention to what is happening around them in the country and the world.  Hipsterism then is a symptom of a much larger cultural problem.

      Jesus, it took a dozen posts from you to get one decent argument.  Why couldn’t you have just posted this and skipped the all the bullshit?

      Azathoth made a very similar argument further up, that Hipsterism has a neutral effect on those who join it.  Hipsters do have values, but whether or not they come from Hipsterism is questionable at best.  Like I told Azathoth, the argument that the values found in hipsters comes from Hipsterism is a very difficult one to make–I’ve never met a Republican hipster, but theoretically one could exist.  I’ve never met a racist or homo-phobic hipster (or at least not purposely so, ignorance can make even the best-intentioned people say or do racist stuff), but theoretically one could exist, which can’t really be said of the Hippie movement.  Although one would have to wonder why he or she would be hanging around the liberals, minorities and gays found in many hipster circles. 

      People who become hipsters may find themselves becoming more “green” or anti-racism or anti-consumerism, and one is tempted to say that comes from attempting to emulate the more seasoned hipsters around them rather than descending from on high in a heavenly chorus and indeed one may be 100% correct about this, but I’m not convinced that having a neutral effect is inherently a Bad Thing ™.  As I said earlier, maybe its time for youths to get their morals and values from somewhere else besides the Cool Kids ™.

  • Anon

    hipsters are bad until you have something to market to them, then they’ll be the best source of income you’ll ever find

  • Anon

    hipsters are bad until you have something to market to them, then they’ll be the best source of income you’ll ever find

  • Anonymous

    Being anti-consumerist doesn’t mean you have to make all your clothes yourself, or that you have to buy the most generic version you can find. It’s OK to spend some money on well-made, fashionable clothes that look & feel good on you, as long as you don’t confuse that with spiritual fulfillment.

  • Surrealias

    Portlandia does a good job of making fun of hipsters! I swear, that show could go on for many seasons and still be funny. So many ‘hipsters’ are so open to be made fun of!

  • Surrealias

    Portlandia does a good job of making fun of hipsters! I swear, that show could go on for many seasons and still be funny. So many ‘hipsters’ are so open to be made fun of!

  • nevertrusta3sum

    I appreciate non-conformal clothing, independent movies, unconventional art and music, antique bikes. The difference between you and I, TunaGhost, is the fact that I don’t associate (or claim allegiance to) with a clique or sub culture who thinks they better or more aware than the rest of the world. I’m a person, as well as you are a person. I think. The reason I say Fuck you and Fuck these dirty hipsters is, because of the arrogance I’ve experienced on a massive scale of attending shows, art events, local pubs( I don’t fit the mold, they are cookie cutter fucks). They think they are being so unique, and they for the most part they all the same when it comes to beliefs, fashion and art (except for a few). What a bunch of see and be seen trustafarian (trust fund hippy wanabes) garbage they represent. 

  • nevertrusta3sum

    I appreciate non-conformal clothing, independent movies, unconventional art and music, antique bikes. The difference between you and I, TunaGhost, is the fact that I don’t associate (or claim allegiance to) with a clique or sub culture who thinks they better or more aware than the rest of the world. I’m a person, as well as you are a person. I think. The reason I say Fuck you and Fuck these dirty hipsters is, because of the arrogance I’ve experienced on a massive scale of attending shows, art events, local pubs( I don’t fit the mold, they are cookie cutter fucks). They think they are being so unique, and they for the most part they all the same when it comes to beliefs, fashion and art (except for a few). What a bunch of see and be seen trustafarian (trust fund hippy wanabes) garbage they represent. 

  • nevertrusta3sum

    I want to hang out with you. You’ve hit the nail on the head with this awesome rant..

  • http://twitter.com/RachelHaywire Rachel Haywire

    Can I put my finger on you? That would be getting closer to the pulse. 

  • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

    Whatever people may think…you certainly lit up the comments board :-) Thats a success in itself!

    Never much liked skinny jeans…except on my exes. I was always a ‘boot-cut’ jeans fella…(making a slight exception for my clubbing years…when leather and mesh were more appropriate)…but the rest of my garb was an amalgam of whatever we could scrounge or handcraft around Kalamazoo, Detroit, Lansing and Grand Rapids, MI.

    Maybe I really am a crusty leftover from the days of homeless gay punks,ravers,goths and glam kids roaming the streets of Michigan…with a closet full of old gear I could never wear to work and paint a house in…and a shelf covered in albums that may have a street cred value and precious memories…but comparatively little relevance anymore. I’m a little bitter and I know it. I miss being right on the cutting edge, when my senses were sharp and everything I liked became acclaimed and respected within a year or two. I had the friends that everyone else wanted…woke up in the beds other people wished to be in…showed my face in the scenes that seemed to count…

    …and then I met someone, fell in love, wanted to earn a living and take care of them, and settled down and got old.

    but my music is still awesome…and I’ll never stop cheering for the underdogs in any given fight. So if you’re out there working to make your scene more relevant, more conscious, more meaningful than a shopping expedition…go you…never quit and never say die!!!

  • http://twitter.com/TheNiallist Niall O’Conghaile

    How funny! I wrote this exact same article for Dangerous Minds 4 months ago: 

    http://www.dangerousminds.net/comments/so_that_makes_you_a_square_in_defence_of_the_hipster/

  • Niall_OConghaile

    How funny! I wrote this exact same article for Dangerous Minds 4 months ago: 

    http://www.dangerousminds.net/comments/so_that_makes_you_a_square_in_defence_of_the_hipster/

    • Niall_OConghaile

      Perhaps it had something to do with this post on my own blog 
      http://www.Niallism.com entitled “FUCK DISINFORMATION”:

      http://www.niallism.com/2011/07/fuck-disinformation.html

      • Niall_OConghaile

        DIsinformation themselves have published some of my writing, 
        like my piece on Kanye West’s Power video last December: 

        http://www.disinfo.com/2010/12/kanye-west-power-illuminati-overkill/

        • NarwhalNecropsy

          So this and your article bears similarity? Ok… Put your stuff on the internet at your own risk. It’s not like he copy and pasted the article word for word anyway.

          • Dako

            You might have googled yr own title tho, tuna… (subtle pseudonym, dude).

            Seems remiss to not do so, and then upon finding such a similarly titled story about such a similar thing, maybe found a new one? You could even have linked to the article….

          • Tuna Ghost

            I assure you, I wrote this years ago.  You can ask the guy behind Black Sun Gazette, I originally submitted it to him back in 2009.  Nick-something-or-other.  You can find him online in the catalogued BSG.  

          • Chris Mounce

            I can vouch for this I was involved with Nick at the Black Sun Gazette. These are his ideas and his style of writing.

          • Niall_OConghaile

            So this was first published in 2009?

          • AnonPresidentSIUC

            Sue this hack for plagiarism. It will hold up!

          • Tuna Ghost

            If he ever published it, he didn’t tell me.  BSG went under soon after I gave an earlier version of it to Nick.  Many of the points in this piece came from a discussion on the now-defunct Barbelith.com.  If I plagiarized anything or anyone, it was that discussion.  

          • Niall_OConghaile

            “Put your stuff on the internet at your own risk.” – the Cooks Source defense. 

    • Redacted

      You should sue them ironically

      • Niall_OConghaile

        But, like, they still wouldn’t get it… Defending hipsters was SO four months ago.

        • Tuna Ghost

          I’ve been waiting days for someone to say that, what took you so long

          • Effewe2

            You are a fucking juvenile. Your a child who has developed the ability to communicate his wants and desires clearly. Congratulations.

  • Ekskn-3

    I am the poster of the original comment above. You fail to show me how does a hipster aims to create a better society? because they don’t. they consume everything living in the end times out of sheer nihilistic desire. Lovely folks!

    Sorry but there is no fucking assumption in here, until defeated hippies were a movement to get out of capitalist shit, at least remember vietnam war, Hipsters on the other hand is a movement to get into capitalist shit as much as possible. Oh consume consume consume! 
    You obviously have time and money to design yourself a fake outer persona while people suffer on ghettos and suburbs. Be reel and connect with people from every social strata, you are the elitist one. Speak with the woman that comes to clean your house while you are busy with your expensive gigs and concerts.I understand that you love being cool and trendy but maybe instead if you read a little bit news and see what is happening around you, in your community, in your world. SO you can make up a real persona in these happenings instead of a fake one that is “designed one” with a lot of $$$$$good luck with that.

  • http://twitter.com/TheNiallist Niall O’Conghaile

    Perhaps it had something to do with this post on my own blog 
    http://www.Niallism.com entitled “FUCK DISINFORMATION”:http://www.niallism.com/2011/07/fuck-disinformation.html

  • http://twitter.com/TheNiallist Niall O’Conghaile

    DIsinformation themselves have published some of my writing, 
    like my piece on Kanye West’s Power video last December: 

    http://disinfo.com/2010/12/kanye-west-power-illuminati-overkill/

  • Anonymous

    You should sue them ironically

  • NarwhalNecropsy

    I laughed when I got up today and saw a new article already had over 100 comments. Is this what we have been degraded to do? Argue about what a “hipster” really is? Please. I’m not bashing Tuna for putting up the article, just the droves of ignoramuses that decided it was really important to have a flame war over this. Every scene or group on earth has a percentage of people just showing up to try to be “hip” in some respect, and they dont all look like these hipsters you describe. Get over it.

  • NarwhalNecropsy

    I laughed when I got up today and saw a new article already had over 100 comments. Is this what we have been degraded to do? Argue about what a “hipster” really is? Please. I’m not bashing Tuna for putting up the article, just the droves of ignoramuses that decided it was really important to have a flame war over this. Every scene or group on earth has a percentage of people just showing up to try to be “hip” in some respect, and they dont all look like these hipsters you describe. Get over it.

    • Tuna Ghost

      Well its not that remarkable that it has over a 100 posts, since roughly half of them are my own.  But still, my goals were a.) convince people to stop using the criticisms I noted in my article, or b.) convince people to start self-identifying as “hipster” if the term applies to them, or c.) get a discussion going.  In that respect, at least I accomplished one of my goals.

  • NarwhalNecropsy

    So this and your article bears similarity? Ok… Put your stuff on the internet at your own risk. It’s not like he copy and pasted the article word for word anyway.

  • StillAtMyMoms

    The problem with hipsterism is that it doesn’t view itself as a fad but rather as a lifestyle.  It’s really self-denial or an absolute form of insecurity.  It’s completely bullshit of pseudo intellectuals feeling obligated to become apathetic on the basis of conformity.  “I think I’m not going to give a shit, but check out this Paula Abdul cassette I found in my basement!”  The only merit they have is giving a cultural paradox for our generation.  They’re what I’d like to call an earthy version of the freaks you remember in high school–except they do it because it’s currently cool.  Plus the freaks, goths, alternative kids, metal heads had legitimate reason for their tastes in fashion and the arts because, as many people said in this board, it is a genuine form of self-expression.  They do it because they truly like it; not because of the novelty (albeit high school kids being the exception of course).  Hipsters are nonetheless attention-seekers.  Seriously, they buy PBR out of their own pockets just to make a statement?  Who genuinely enjoys drinking that nasty old man shit?  If they were so non-conformist; they wouldn’t vote for Obama or purchase pre-designed merchandise just to make a statement of their conformity.  THEY ARE NOT UNIQUE.  A TREND, BAR NONE.

  • Dako

    You might have googled yr own title tho, tuna… (subtle pseudonym, dude).

    Seems remiss to not do so, and then upon finding such a similarly titled story about such a similar thing, maybe found a new one? You could even have linked to the article….

  • fuzzgun

    I wouldn’t call myself a “hipster”, personally… I hate a lot of indie rock. I’ve been obsessed with punk rock and “alternative culture” for 15+ years and it’s inextricably a part of me, so I don’t really feel threatened by neo-indie internet hipsters. They’re just embarrassing themselves, as far as I’m concerned. Just look at all the fucking drones who were sporting the “ankle hugger jeans with Husker Du mustache” look a few years ago. If they want to wear that shit in public, I should thank them for so conveniently identifying themselves with a Douchebag Costume. It does make douches a lot easier to identify.

  • Hunter

    This is a pretty well crafted argument. The attack on “hipsterism” is always filled with holes. The critics throw out a few valid points but they rarely connect and rarely have much to say in the way of substance. What is a hipster? A white (maybe) middle class (maybe) educated (possibly) kid (sometimes) who is into art, culture, fashion and music?! I don’t know why anyone would even attempt to attack such an undefined group(?) of people . The main reason I usually hear for criticism is that this so called Hipsters lack the passion required to be considered legitimate in some sense. If you seriously think that the cultural movements preceding the “hipster” movement were unwaveringly and vibrantly passionate in such a way that they are exempt from all the same criticisms you dish out to the current crop then you are sorely mistaken. As with most cultural movements there are the actual “movers and doers” and then “everyone else along for the ride”. This is nothing new and I don’t really even think theres much wrong with it at all. Get off your high horse. Your arguments are worn and tired. You sound like a buncha whiney, boring, has been/never beens who having nothing to enjoy in life so you make shit up to criticize in order to legitimize your own mundane existences full off the very things you tend to bash.  Maybe thats what this is all about. Guilt projection? Hmmm.

  • Hunter

    This is a pretty well crafted argument. The attack on “hipsterism” is always filled with holes. The critics throw out a few valid points but they rarely connect and rarely have much to say in the way of substance. What is a hipster? A white (maybe) middle class (maybe) educated (possibly) kid (sometimes) who is into art, culture, fashion and music?! I don’t know why anyone would even attempt to attack such an undefined group(?) of people . The main reason I usually hear for criticism is that this so called Hipsters lack the passion required to be considered legitimate in some sense. If you seriously think that the cultural movements preceding the “hipster” movement were unwaveringly and vibrantly passionate in such a way that they are exempt from all the same criticisms you dish out to the current crop then you are sorely mistaken. As with most cultural movements there are the actual “movers and doers” and then “everyone else along for the ride”. This is nothing new and I don’t really even think theres much wrong with it at all. Get off your high horse. Your arguments are worn and tired. You sound like a buncha whiney, boring, has been/never beens who having nothing to enjoy in life so you make shit up to criticize in order to legitimize your own mundane existences full off the very things you tend to bash.  Maybe thats what this is all about. Guilt projection? Hmmm.

  • Honu

    What would you call it then, a hobby?  Semantics.  I think it’s just upsetting to you or anyone who at one point (myself included and to an extent, still today) feels or felt a sense of being special based on whatever you’ve identified yourself with at the time, that it can actually be reduced to something as pedestrian and as common as consumerism.  Gotta go along with Lacerveza on this one.

  • Chris Mounce

    Holy shit Tuna Ghost you’ve pissed off more people than I thought. There is something tender & juicy under this scab you picked!

  • Chris Mounce

    Holy shit Tuna Ghost you’ve pissed off more people than I thought. There is something tender & juicy under this scab you picked!

    • Tuna Ghost

      Yeah I expected some haters, and for some to wonder why anyone would even bother with something so trivial.   But I really didn’t expect this many people to give a shit, frankly.  

  • Chris Mounce

    What you ain’t down with the dark carnival of souls bro?

  • Chris Mounce

    I think I had beer with you in Milwaukee if not next beer is on me Paqui. Your choice Miller or Riverwest micro-brew – cheap but doesn’t taste like piss.

  • Honu

    I know it’s cool to feel different and feel righteous about your sense of being different but so called hipsters are no different than any of the counterculture movements that every generation has.  Arguing for hipsterism is fine and I agree that when you’re on the inside of the countercultural movement of the moment, it feels great and strengthens your ideals about it.  It’s a youthful indulgence, this over identification with an idealized lifestyle. 

    Nothing personal Tuna because I respect your intelligence (even if I
    disagree with you about things on this site) but I think this subject is
    overly narcissistic and unnecessary even for a blog site such as this
    that has plenty of posters such as myself who enjoy narcissism. ,

  • justagirl

    i like hipsters.  :)
    unless they house be smelling like the cat piddles… then that is weird… and gross.

  • justagirl

    i like hipsters.  :)
    unless they house be smelling like the cat piddles… then that is weird… and gross.

  • Arborwayne

    WHO FUCKING GIVES A SHIT?

  • Arborwayne

    WHO FUCKING GIVES A SHIT?

  • http://www.facebook.com/jamie.pasiak Jamie Pasiak

    One thing i think we all need to take a seat and realize is that no matter what, different people will get into something for different reasons. to make a statement about a group of people from ANY side of the spectrum is silly. i can speak on my behalf that i partake in “hipsterism” by default. i’ve never gone out of my way to enjoy a certain band or dress a certain way, but on the other hand i know firsthand that SOME people do go out of their way because of social pressure from their peers. and would only check out a band if their friends like them as well. but that’s the case with ALL social groups. authenticity is just as sparse in your day to day average joe as it is a hipster. weaker people will ALWAYS flock to a hot trend that they feel suits them and hump the shit out of it until it becomes null and falls apart. but much like punk, hippy shit, beatniks and so on, the hipster thing started off with some genuinely interesting stuff coming out of it. and still does. but for every interesting tidbit made by a an artist or musician. there are a half dozen stupid “memes” made by a poster child hipster. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/jamie.pasiak Jamie Pasiak

    One thing i think we all need to take a seat and realize is that no matter what, different people will get into something for different reasons. to make a statement about a group of people from ANY side of the spectrum is silly. i can speak on my behalf that i partake in “hipsterism” by default. i’ve never gone out of my way to enjoy a certain band or dress a certain way, but on the other hand i know firsthand that SOME people do go out of their way because of social pressure from their peers. and would only check out a band if their friends like them as well. but that’s the case with ALL social groups. authenticity is just as sparse in your day to day average joe as it is a hipster. weaker people will ALWAYS flock to a hot trend that they feel suits them and hump the shit out of it until it becomes null and falls apart. but much like punk, hippy shit, beatniks and so on, the hipster thing started off with some genuinely interesting stuff coming out of it. and still does. but for every interesting tidbit made by a an artist or musician. there are a half dozen stupid “memes” made by a poster child hipster. 

  • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

    Not really favoring any side here, but I think he’s arguing that having any interest in particular (be it model trains or fashion) that happens to require money cannot necessarily be called consumerism simply on the basis that it requires money… In the same light you cant call having a desire to stick to organic food consumerist even though it tends to require more money today than eating crap.

    The problem is the intertwining of economic success and engaging an what you might truly be interested in. I personally believe devoting yourself to fashion is silly… but I think the same thing of model train collectors, but I do not begrudge either as consumerist.

    By the same token if you live your life just for this particular aspect of your life, and only think about getting mo’ money just to get that next train, or the hottest fashion… then you probably need to reorganize your thinking.

  • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

    From what I gather, hispsterism seems to be the natural reaction of a murky sludge of culture that is leftover after the masses of people have their culture destroyed. Post WW2 tons of microcultures that spanned the US were destroyed with consumerism. Of course it was advertised well as the new masses culture: spend and buy, things will make you happy.

    Now we have a fully entrenched consumerist culture, and countercultures have been popping up across the decades over and over, goth, punk, emo, hippie, beat (not particularly in that order)… All have been trying to be the “perfect” counterculture, but still none have been able to entrench themselves as they desire.

    Maybe hipsters are the anti-counterculture. The culture of nothingness, The mainstream doesn’t do it for them, but neither does the mess of the counter-cultures, so they just made up their own. Sortof a what-you-see-is-what-you-get sort of culture. They are by their nature not rooted in any of the former cultures, and in that sense they feel respect from themselves, because they feel they have made something from nothing. But by the same token it seems the natural reaction to something made from nothing from what is already entrenched (both mainstream and counterculture) is disgust simply because they do not seem “authentic” in terms of the current cultures.

    But don’t mind me, this is all just random speculation. Have a nice day!

  • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

    From what I gather, hispsterism seems to be the natural reaction of a murky sludge of culture that is leftover after the masses of people have their culture destroyed. Post WW2 tons of microcultures that spanned the US were destroyed with consumerism. Of course it was advertised well as the new masses culture: spend and buy, things will make you happy.

    Now we have a fully entrenched consumerist culture, and countercultures have been popping up across the decades over and over, goth, punk, emo, hippie, beat (not particularly in that order)… All have been trying to be the “perfect” counterculture, but still none have been able to entrench themselves as they desire.

    Maybe hipsters are the anti-counterculture. The culture of nothingness, The mainstream doesn’t do it for them, but neither does the mess of the counter-cultures, so they just made up their own. Sortof a what-you-see-is-what-you-get sort of culture. They are by their nature not rooted in any of the former cultures, and in that sense they feel respect from themselves, because they feel they have made something from nothing. But by the same token it seems the natural reaction to something made from nothing from what is already entrenched (both mainstream and counterculture) is disgust simply because they do not seem “authentic” in terms of the current cultures.

    But don’t mind me, this is all just random speculation. Have a nice day!

  • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

    Hah, I forgot about Hark a Vagrant. Good comic

  • purplemountain

    cool story bro. I am heartened to see that this has spawned more comments than 99% of other threads I’ve ever seen here; glad to know spirited debate on vital topics is still alive and well in this crazy world. it’s comforting, y’know?

  • purplemountain

    cool story bro. I am heartened to see that this has spawned more comments than 99% of other threads I’ve ever seen here; glad to know spirited debate on vital topics is still alive and well in this crazy world. it’s comforting, y’know?

    • Andrew

      Exactly.

      • Tuna_Gayst

        Fuck you.

  • Karlo Estrada

    Can I eat my own bacon underwear and puke at the same time, drink my vomit and think of the next post-intellectual trend to say…

  • Karlo Estrada

    Can I eat my own bacon underwear and puke at the same time, drink my vomit and think of the next post-intellectual trend to say…

  • Tuna Ghost

    I’m not arguing for Hipsterism necessarily (and I’m certainly not trying to say its special or really unique or anything), I’m just defending it against its most common criticisms, as those criticisms are mostly bunk.

  • Tuna Ghost

    Whoa guy!  I wrote this exactly because I wanted to get a discussion going, and I certainly want to be part of that discussion.  I wanted a back-and-forth, that’s how we learn and sharpen our ideas and whatnot.  Unfortunately this article generated far more posts than I will ever be able to respond to, but this, this here in the comments section, is exactly what I wanted to happen.  I’ve had to refine my views because of the discussions I’ve had here, and that is precisely what I (and I think all writers on subjects in this field) need.

  • Tuna Ghost

    nah, apparently I’m just terrible at recognizing sarcasm.  A poor trait in a hipster, I think we can agree

  • Tuna Ghost

    I assure you, I wrote this years ago.  You can ask the guy behind Black Sun Gazette, I originally submitted it to him back in 2009.  Nick-something-or-other.  You can find him online in the catalogued BSG.  

  • Tuna Ghost

    Right.  We get that.  The question here is, if one sincerely enjoys affectations, what then?  Can we still call them “fake” is they’re engaged in a sincere activity?

  • Tuna Ghost

    To put it more simply: goths don’t want to walk into a store to find a shirt that is pre-shredded.
    I believe it.  Hipsters don’t go into stores and buy jeans that have been distressed by a machine.  They distress them themselves, or buy vintage.  

    The point was (I think, dude hasn’t gotten back to me yet), the fashion trends eventually caused brands to start making some god-awful pieces of clothing.  

    Goths find much more enjoyment finding things in thrift stores or second-hand shops that have wear and age, or very basic things in Target and then modifying them themselves. Sew a patch on, put a logo, put some feathers on the shoulders of an old jacket, fix a ripped seam with safety pins. 

    You could have started that paragraph with the word “hipsters” and it would have been equally true.  I’ve done all those things.  I will admit it is easier to spot the…well I don’t want to say “real”, so let’s choose “seasoned”…seasoned goths from the amateurs than it is with hipsters, and this has to do with some of the points you’ve made.

  • Tuna Ghost

    Nothing personal Tuna because I respect your intelligence (even if I 
    disagree with you about things on this site) but I think this subject is
    overly narcissistic and unnecessary even for a blog site such as this 
    that has plenty of posters such as myself who enjoy narcissism.

    Damn, if you had just used the word “pretentious” in there somewhere I could have totally accused you of being a hipster.  Curses!

  • Tuna Ghost

    Well its not that remarkable that it has over a 100 posts, since roughly half of them are my own.  But still, my goals were a.) convince people to stop using the criticisms I noted in my article, or b.) convince people to start self-identifying as “hipster” if the term applies to them, or c.) get a discussion going.  In that respect, at least I accomplished one of my goals.

  • Tuna Ghost

    Yeah I expected some haters, and for some to wonder why anyone would even bother with something so trivial.   But I really didn’t expect this many people to give a shit, frankly.  

  • Chris Mounce

    I can vouch for this I was involved with Nick at the Black Sun Gazette. These are his ideas and his style of writing.

  • Tuna Ghost

    I won’t lie that one can find that air of superiority in some hipsters, and I think that comes naturally to some extent from chasing trends.  The novelty aspect is important when chasing fashion trends, so one sort of “wins” when one discovers or creates a new trend.  Unfortunately, this victory only has meaning with others engaged in the same race; trying to brag to someone not involved will only make one look like an asshole with absolutely zero self-awareness.  

    Of course, that sort of condescension comes in all walks of life–I recently made a friend (who is most certainly not a hipster) admit that if someone had come up to him proudly announcing his “discovery” of command line language operating systems, he (my friend) would have had a vicious insult on his lips and ready to go before the poor sap had even finished his sentence.  

  • Tuna Ghost

    yeah, you’re totally not making assumptions about people’s lives or motivations.  

    Not at all.

  • Tuna Ghost

    This article, with it’s poor writing and incomplete thoughts, reads more like an apology for hipsterism rather than a justification for it. 

    That’s the third time you’ve done that.  Are you going to point out any of these incomplete thoughts or examples of poor writing, or are we just supposed to take your word for it?

    The problem with hipsterism is that it doesn’t have a response or a cultural force.  It is a shallow distraction for the nation’s adult children, too obsessed with novelty to pay attention to what is happening around them in the country and the world.  Hipsterism then is a symptom of a much larger cultural problem.

    Jesus, it took a dozen posts from you to get one decent argument.  Why couldn’t you have just posted this and skipped the all the bullshit?

    Azathoth made a very similar argument further up, that Hipsterism has a neutral effect on those who join it.  Hipsters do have values, but whether or not they come from Hipsterism is questionable at best.  Like I told Azathoth, the argument that the values found in hipsters comes from Hipsterism is a very difficult one to make–I’ve never met a Republican hipster, but theoretically one could exist.  I’ve never met a racist or homo-phobic hipster (or at least not purposely so, ignorance can make even the best-intentioned people say or do racist stuff), but theoretically one could exist, which can’t really be said of the Hippie movement.  Although one would have to wonder why he or she would be hanging around the liberals, minorities and gays found in many hipster circles. 

    People who become hipsters may find themselves becoming more “green” or anti-racism or anti-consumerism, and one is tempted to say that comes from attempting to emulate the more seasoned hipsters around them rather than descending from on high in a heavenly chorus and indeed one may be 100% correct about this, but I’m not convinced that having a neutral effect is inherently a Bad Thing ™.  As I said earlier, maybe its time for youths to get their morals and values from somewhere else besides the Cool Kids ™.

  • Anonymous

    i don’t drink (azn tolerance) except for sake. and i had to google pbr.

  • Elmyr23

    don’t feed the troll

  • Elmyr23

    don’t feed the troll

  • Bob

    skipped 100+ post, fighting arugment and saying your real point 100+ post deep is lame. maybe your a devils advocate, good job. effect somebodies thought

  • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

    You didn’t miss out on much…trust. PBR is to beer what sulfuric acid is to champagne.

  • http://twitter.com/TheNiallist Niall O’Conghaile

    So this was first published in 2009?

  • http://twitter.com/TheNiallist Niall O’Conghaile

    But, like, they still wouldn’t get it, yeah? 

  • http://twitter.com/TheNiallist Niall O’Conghaile

    “Put your stuff on the internet at your own risk.” – the Cooks Source defense. 

  • oriah

    Maybe i’ve missed out on something.  I didn’t realize hating hipsters was so en vogue.   I don’t think i’m a “hipster” but i certainly don’t “hate” them.

    In many of the comments posted here it sounds as if people are most upset by what they perceive as a lack of authenticity on the part of hipsters.  It also appears people believe other times/styles/”movements” had great gravity and cultural significance.  I would like to suggest an alternate view.

    Every period has it’s own cultural collateral and brings something to the evolution of our conciousness.  But, in the moment, as it’s happening, it’s about having a good time and expressing a way of being that defies the current paradigm.  The larger cultural significance can only be observed in retrospect.  I would argue this is true for the jazz age, the great depression, the beat generation, the counter culture of the hippies (oh the boomers!), yuppies, and now hipsters.

    It appears to me there are a lot of stereotypes woven in this thread that are somewhat amusing to me.  First, it appears people believe hipsters are predominantly middle class.  While i agree they may be from middle-class origins, gen-X and gen-Y are the first generations who are expected to be worse-off then their parents.  They are, in fact, downwardly mobile.  Shopping at thift stores may be a necessitiy/decision born of economic reality.  In light of the fact wages have been supressed, jobs have been sent overseas, and americans subsidize their lives with credit, shopping at thrift stores seems like a good idea….not to mention it has less environmental impact than buying new stuff.  I would agree buying new stuff that looks like old stuff is absurd.  I’m also acutely aware that many hipsters may have a degree they could hang on the wall, have thousands of dollars of debt related to that piece of paper, and  learned no marketable skills related to their degree.  Culturally, the world has changed.  The liberal arts degree that used to give you access to white collar employment is realatively useless.  Please don’t get your knickers in a twist over that statement…i have a BA in psych and it’s realatively worthless.  Add to that the fact that most newly created jobs are in the service sector and you have a recipe for college educated, formerly middle-class baristas.   

    There have been a number of people who’ve mentioned music and art as being co-opted by hipsters.  So what?  Everyone today has nearly limitless access to the arts in all their forms.  Museums have sections devoted to the ancient world, renaissance, impressionist, modern, post-modern, arts & crafts, and a ton of other genres i’ve left out.  Some art & music will resonate with you and some won’t.  Very few (if any) artists, writers, or musicians create something and think, “I hope only 247 people in the whole world know about & appreciate my work….otherwise, i’ll feel co-opted and exploited by a lesser culture.”

    There are actually a number of things about hipsters i really like.  I like that they accept multiculturalism as a given.  If they’re accused of co-opting other cultures or minorities, there’s a part of me that says, “So what?”  The myth of the u.s. is that we’re the great “melting pot.”  Something about that has always implied that newcomers should assimilate.  What i see happening now is that newcomers are observed, appreciated, and part of their culture becomes part of who we are and how we relate to the world.  That assimilation or adoption happens EVERYTIME we hear or see something that resonates with us and you can’t claim that someone else’s dirrect experience is inauthentic.  You aren’t in their skin.

    Another thing i really appreciate about hipsters is that sexual orientation is a non-issue.  This in conjuction with multiculturalism are significant cultural jumps in conciousness.  It’s a profound shift in people’s understanding and acceptance of others.

    I also appreciate the general sense of environmental concern i see in the hipsters.  Local and organic foods are part of most people’s conciousness (and it wasn’t that way 10 years ago).  Frequenting local businesses over chains is a good thing that strengthens local economies.  Walking, biking, skateboarding are great alternatives to driving.

    Maybe rather than throwing the word “hipster” around like it’s a derogatory term, we should all attempt to just accept people where there are today, assume they’ll adopt change over time, and realize that what we hate most in others is really a reflection of what we hate most in ourselves.

  • oriah

    Maybe i’ve missed out on something.  I didn’t realize hating hipsters was so en vogue.   I don’t think i’m a “hipster” but i certainly don’t “hate” them.

    In many of the comments posted here it sounds as if people are most upset by what they perceive as a lack of authenticity on the part of hipsters.  It also appears people believe other times/styles/”movements” had great gravity and cultural significance.  I would like to suggest an alternate view.

    Every period has it’s own cultural collateral and brings something to the evolution of our conciousness.  But, in the moment, as it’s happening, it’s about having a good time and expressing a way of being that defies the current paradigm.  The larger cultural significance can only be observed in retrospect.  I would argue this is true for the jazz age, the great depression, the beat generation, the counter culture of the hippies (oh the boomers!), yuppies, and now hipsters.

    It appears to me there are a lot of stereotypes woven in this thread that are somewhat amusing to me.  First, it appears people believe hipsters are predominantly middle class.  While i agree they may be from middle-class origins, gen-X and gen-Y are the first generations who are expected to be worse-off then their parents.  They are, in fact, downwardly mobile.  Shopping at thift stores may be a necessitiy/decision born of economic reality.  In light of the fact wages have been supressed, jobs have been sent overseas, and americans subsidize their lives with credit, shopping at thrift stores seems like a good idea….not to mention it has less environmental impact than buying new stuff.  I would agree buying new stuff that looks like old stuff is absurd.  I’m also acutely aware that many hipsters may have a degree they could hang on the wall, have thousands of dollars of debt related to that piece of paper, and  learned no marketable skills related to their degree.  Culturally, the world has changed.  The liberal arts degree that used to give you access to white collar employment is realatively useless.  Please don’t get your knickers in a twist over that statement…i have a BA in psych and it’s realatively worthless.  Add to that the fact that most newly created jobs are in the service sector and you have a recipe for college educated, formerly middle-class baristas.   

    There have been a number of people who’ve mentioned music and art as being co-opted by hipsters.  So what?  Everyone today has nearly limitless access to the arts in all their forms.  Museums have sections devoted to the ancient world, renaissance, impressionist, modern, post-modern, arts & crafts, and a ton of other genres i’ve left out.  Some art & music will resonate with you and some won’t.  Very few (if any) artists, writers, or musicians create something and think, “I hope only 247 people in the whole world know about & appreciate my work….otherwise, i’ll feel co-opted and exploited by a lesser culture.”

    There are actually a number of things about hipsters i really like.  I like that they accept multiculturalism as a given.  If they’re accused of co-opting other cultures or minorities, there’s a part of me that says, “So what?”  The myth of the u.s. is that we’re the great “melting pot.”  Something about that has always implied that newcomers should assimilate.  What i see happening now is that newcomers are observed, appreciated, and part of their culture becomes part of who we are and how we relate to the world.  That assimilation or adoption happens EVERYTIME we hear or see something that resonates with us and you can’t claim that someone else’s dirrect experience is inauthentic.  You aren’t in their skin.

    Another thing i really appreciate about hipsters is that sexual orientation is a non-issue.  This in conjuction with multiculturalism are significant cultural jumps in conciousness.  It’s a profound shift in people’s understanding and acceptance of others.

    I also appreciate the general sense of environmental concern i see in the hipsters.  Local and organic foods are part of most people’s conciousness (and it wasn’t that way 10 years ago).  Frequenting local businesses over chains is a good thing that strengthens local economies.  Walking, biking, skateboarding are great alternatives to driving.

    Maybe rather than throwing the word “hipster” around like it’s a derogatory term, we should all attempt to just accept people where there are today, assume they’ll adopt change over time, and realize that what we hate most in others is really a reflection of what we hate most in ourselves.

  • Anonymous

    oh i do like plum wine on occasion, but no one else will drink that with me…lol

  • nevertrusta3sum

    Fuck you hipsters. Shave that beard you trendy fucking slop. and get a fucking job.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HP2W0LqQwEE

  • nevertrusta3sum

    Fuck you hipsters. Shave that beard you trendy fucking slop. and get a fucking job.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HP2W0LqQwEE

  • Andrew

    Exactly.

  • http://twitter.com/Paulo_UK Paulo

    A great one-off British comedy series that deals with hipsters. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lhAr_UeroCk

  • http://twitter.com/Paulo_UK Paulo

    A great one-off British comedy series that deals with hipsters. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lhAr_UeroCk

  • Godlesski866

    Jin the Ninja agrees again.. as he agrees with frigging everything… lemming.

  • Cannedazz

    In the internetz.. the first yell..HITLER.or.RACIST.. Loses the argument forever..period. These annoying red herring ad hominem attacks are played out….. PEAZE!

  • GEIST

    4 people like this…people who only know you after reading this article. 

  • GEIST

    4 people like this…people who only know you after reading this article. 

  • AnonPresidentSIUC

    Sue this hack for plagiarism. It will hold up!

  • Suckmytree

    Out of the closet finally. Maybe you’ll quit being a monkey poser bitch now.

  • Anonymous

    Cool story bro

  • Bigdickmegaherz

    Awesome response… Bravo.

  • Bigdickmegaherz

    Awesome response… Bravo.

  • Bigdickmegaherz

    I like PBR so fuck you!

  • Supes

    Its easy to be a ballsy smart ass and argue invalid points when your anon like tuna ghost and me. At least your a real person Eric.

  • Tuna_Gayst

    Fuck you.

  • Nano_Thermite_911

    And this is why Tuna Ghost is right to self-classify as a hipster.  

  • Jamie Lee

    An “old” one (in Internet time, it’s from 2007) along similar lines: http://www.alterati.com/blog/?p=25

    (Old enough the image archive is all gone from server migration, but the text is all well and good.) 

    • PoshardSIU

      Run this article through some plagiarism checkers… This guys a hack.

  • http://www.facebook.com/agent139 Jamie Lee

    An “old” one (in Internet time, it’s from 2007) along similar lines: http://www.alterati.com/blog/?p=25

    (Old enough the image archive is all gone from server migration, but the text is all well and good.) 

  • Anonymous

    This is really the deal fuzzgun, all us olds are pissed off they didn’t earn their stripes.  Hipsters are what google did to cool, it destroyed any possibility of an underground. Any glimmer of a regional counter-culture is sucked into the equalizing machine and spit back to the world at large with a price tag. Part of it is probably epistemology, based on the blood, sweat, and tears it used to require to “know” something “cool.” I don’t think the hipster reaction is in any sense invalid though, these kids grew up without any sweat equity in the scene. The one facet of this I resent is that no one cares for quality, but, a lot of counter-culture suffered from that over the last four decades as well. 
    As for the class war arguments going on above, the working-class never likes it when you gentrify their living. It prices them out of their clothing, food, and neighborhoods. Nobody likes their way of life being priced out of their means because some spoiled ass white kid thought it looked cool. That said, the process of gentrification can be pretty fun if you’ve got the cash to spend. William S. Burroughs was a rich kid, Kerouac and Ginsberg too, people in the jazz clubs thought they were pretty douchey as I understand it. The original punk bands all sold pop records, and weren’t the property of some elite counter-culture, as they became in the later days. It’s all primate in-group/out-group territorial politics, inherent to the species, probably important in some distant past. My blood pressure is better if I don’t take any of it too seriously.

  • Ava

    seriously? i used to like this website. 

  • Ava

    seriously? i used to like this website. 

  • http://thefirstchurchofmutterhals.blogspot.com/ mutterhals

    Hipster hater haters are the new hipsters.

  • http://thefirstchurchofmutterhals.blogspot.com/ mutterhals

    Hipster hater haters are the new hipsters.

  • Tuna Ghost

    I’ve been waiting days for someone to say that, what took you so long

  • Effewe2

    You are a fucking juvenile. Your a child who has developed the ability to communicate his wants and desires clearly. Congratulations.

  • Effewe2

    You are a fucking juvenile. Your a child who has developed the ability to communicate his wants and desires clearly. Congratulations.

  • PoshardSIU

    @Niall O’Conghaile  I ran this article through a professional Plagiarism check and got 8 hits. I believe Tuna Ghost is a thief.

    • Nano_Thermite_911

      Which engine did you run it through?  

  • PoshardSIU

    @Niall O’Conghaile  I ran this article through a professional Plagiarism check and got 8 hits. I believe Tuna Ghost is a thief.

  • PoshardSIU

    Run this article through some plagiarism checkers… This guys a hack.

  • Nano_Thermite_911

    Which engine did you run it through?  

  • http://www.facebook.com/Carlospanzram Carlos Panzram

    More than mocking “hipsters” its much more fun to watch people with the old mindsets sneer and cling to their “cool” while simultaneously hurling it out to attack others, never to realize that soon they will have none of it left. 

  • Tuna Ghost

    If he ever published it, he didn’t tell me.  BSG went under soon after I gave an earlier version of it to Nick.  Many of the points in this piece came from a discussion on the now-defunct Barbelith.com.  If I plagiarized anything or anyone, it was that discussion.  

  • Martiwa0

    Doggone. Entering the world of hipsterdom sounds like it takes an awful lot of work. To quote the always brilliant and timely Dolly Parton: “It takes a lot of money to look this cheap.”

  • Martiwa0

    Doggone. Entering the world of hipsterdom sounds like it takes an awful lot of work. To quote the always brilliant and timely Dolly Parton: “It takes a lot of money to look this cheap.”

  • Philip Hades

    tldr; lol
    Writing a multi-screen exegeses why people shouldn’t hate you makes you EXACTLY the kind of hipster people should hate. 

  • Philip Hades

    tldr; lol
    Writing a multi-screen exegeses why people shouldn’t hate you makes you EXACTLY the kind of hipster people should hate. 

  • Pingback: In Defense of the Clueless Fan (aka Groupie 2.0) | Disinformation

  • Cityhermit

    you seem to be blissfully ignorant about hispter’s gentrification of working class neighbourhoods. I dont give two splats of a dead junkies vomit about their sense of fashion or irony it is a very real economic issue.

  • Cityhermit

    you seem to be blissfully ignorant about hispter’s gentrification of working class neighbourhoods. I dont give two splats of a dead junkies vomit about their sense of fashion or irony it is a very real economic issue.

  • MTheOverlord

    Smug, poorly written, and compelled me towards Lorentzen’s article.

  • MTheOverlord

    Smug, poorly written, and compelled me towards Lorentzen’s article.

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