ITT: Dat thread title.
I figured that we might as well have some sort of mostly-objective definition of what makes a subculture what it is, because I find that the word is used too often without any connotation behind it. So, this could serve as a place for people to refer when they want to submit a “subculture” entry.
Here is what I personally believe merits a subculture. I have three points:
1. Commitment-To be a subculture, the following in question must include a number of members that are committed to a degree that it can influence patterns of everyday life. This includes usage of free time, collections of commodities, and even character traits.
2. Identity-Members of the subculture must share a sense of affiliation with each other, or distinctness from people who are not members of the subculture must be clear. This differentiates a “subculture” from “individual fans or supporters of something.”
3. Distinctness-Yes, this one does fall in life with identity, but they are subjectively different. To determine a subculture, one must be able to identify qualities that separate members of the subculture from the “outsiders” in some way.
Autonomy can also be important in determining what a subculture is. The subculture has no particular governing or driving force other than its own members. They shouldn’t necessarily let mainstream influences shape the mold and model of their subculture. This is compulsory if the subculture and its members are to prosper, and if the subculture is to succeed.
A fandom is not necessarily an Internet subculture. I see people think this far too often. I say this because in reality, by technical definition a fandom is a subculture. However, KnowYourMeme’s purpose is to document Internet culture, so by this classification, a fandom that has no substance on the Internet is not eligible for an entry on the site.
There you have it. Discuss!