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‘Going viral’ and ‘Going country’: the expressive and instrumental activities of street gangs on social media

‘Going viral’ and ‘Going country’: the expressive and instrumental activities of street gangs on... Based on social media content analysis and focus groups with young people, the current study explores expressive and instrumental uses of the internet among street gangs. ‘Trap rap’ videos posted on YouTube and orientated around life as a drug dealer are identified as the ultimate cultural artefact for denoting London, UK, gang culture. These videos serve an expressive purpose in terms of reputation building, but also shed light on the instrumental business of gangs – specifically, illicit drugs sales via ‘country lines’. Looking beyond the artefact toward how these videos are created, disseminated, and consumed, reveals the instrumental organisation of gangs and how social rules and behaviours within them are monitored and enforced. The current study thus contributes to gang research from the UK, and the growing body of literature on gang and gang member use of the Internet, with implications for research and practice. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Youth Studies Taylor & Francis

‘Going viral’ and ‘Going country’: the expressive and instrumental activities of street gangs on social media

Journal of Youth Studies , Volume 20 (6): 20 – Jul 3, 2017

‘Going viral’ and ‘Going country’: the expressive and instrumental activities of street gangs on social media

Journal of Youth Studies , Volume 20 (6): 20 – Jul 3, 2017

Abstract

Based on social media content analysis and focus groups with young people, the current study explores expressive and instrumental uses of the internet among street gangs. ‘Trap rap’ videos posted on YouTube and orientated around life as a drug dealer are identified as the ultimate cultural artefact for denoting London, UK, gang culture. These videos serve an expressive purpose in terms of reputation building, but also shed light on the instrumental business of gangs – specifically, illicit drugs sales via ‘country lines’. Looking beyond the artefact toward how these videos are created, disseminated, and consumed, reveals the instrumental organisation of gangs and how social rules and behaviours within them are monitored and enforced. The current study thus contributes to gang research from the UK, and the growing body of literature on gang and gang member use of the Internet, with implications for research and practice.

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References (112)

Publisher
Taylor & Francis
Copyright
© 2016 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group
ISSN
1469-9680
eISSN
1367-6261
DOI
10.1080/13676261.2016.1260694
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Based on social media content analysis and focus groups with young people, the current study explores expressive and instrumental uses of the internet among street gangs. ‘Trap rap’ videos posted on YouTube and orientated around life as a drug dealer are identified as the ultimate cultural artefact for denoting London, UK, gang culture. These videos serve an expressive purpose in terms of reputation building, but also shed light on the instrumental business of gangs – specifically, illicit drugs sales via ‘country lines’. Looking beyond the artefact toward how these videos are created, disseminated, and consumed, reveals the instrumental organisation of gangs and how social rules and behaviours within them are monitored and enforced. The current study thus contributes to gang research from the UK, and the growing body of literature on gang and gang member use of the Internet, with implications for research and practice.

Journal

Journal of Youth StudiesTaylor & Francis

Published: Jul 3, 2017

Keywords: Gangs; drug-dealing; rap music; the internet; instrumental versus expressive

There are no references for this article.