Thursday, June 20, 2013

The Death of Goth? Or, a new beast of realities burden - the Temporary Emo? Punk Resurrection?

    It occurred to me while doing some other searches, to use search-term analyses as perhaps, a gauge of Goth culture. Not to say this is "all-encompassing" or anything, but, it did merit food for thought.

In the first query(above), I used five search operators. In the above chart, you see the scale for "underground" off the charts in the green, in comparison with "Goth". Below even further, we find counterculture(red), subculture(yellow), and cyber goth(purple) failing to make any significant impact on this search.

From there, I looked at the geographic information compared with the search term operators. Clearly, even the term "Goth" still brings waves of related "Emo" terms, not to mention, more "feminine terms than masculine". A far cry from the ancient Gothic days of swords, clubs, and spears.

Then, I looked at "counterculture". What was most interesting in this area is that, most of the searches had little to no relation to modern counterculture. Most of the information was related to the "60's, history, and subculture" searches.

Right after, we find "subculture" reflective of "counterculture", except for varying geographic information. Much of the information had little to do directly with subculture, and found itself leaning towards queries made by educational, psychological, and Law Enforcement institutions.

Next, I looked at the search term operator "underground". What was interesting to note at this point was a relation of "geo-politics and informational access". America itself resounded with the high-traffic yield, aside from non-sequitur searches (non-sense even).

"Cyber Goth" (Chart above) - for some reason, I thought this would register higher in relation to the other given terms. The only areas that seemed to draw the largest numbers came from fashion, style, and related shopping terminology. On the given chart of the five operators, Cyber Goth barely registered in comparison.

Next, I used three operators: "Goth, Emo, and Punk". From Dec. 2004 to Jan 2005, "Emo" seemingly comes out of no-where, strong until peaking unbelievably in 2008, following a steady decline which continues to drop. Oddly enough to contrast, as we can see, "Punk" has been on a steady decline well before 2004. By this March 2013, Punk has made a huge spike in such a force that makes the peaks of the other operators look mute in comparison.

By the geographic information analyses, we can see the terms relate to searching for "Emo boys and girls". The music, fashion, and culture areas only seem to exist -if you will- through the proxy of "Goth".

In our last chart, we take a look at how the operating term "Punk" functions in the query. Scores for the band "Daft Punk" register higher than anything (I might infer clever marketing there). "Punk rock and lyrics" seem to be the only other comparable strong operators.

So, what does this mean? Has the "Goth" culture started its never ending death spiral. Or has it become "sub-subcultural"? It seems the new face -if this information was correct- means that somehow Goth beget the culture of Emo? And, is both Goth and Emo dying, somehow resurrecting the past archetypes of Punk?

On this last question, lets look at a few definitions of "Punk".

archaic : prostitute
[probably partly from 3punk] : nonsense, foolishness
a : a young inexperienced person : beginner, novice; especially : a young man
b : a usually petty gangster, hoodlum, or ruffian
c slang : a young man used as a homosexual partner especially in a prison
a : punk rock
b : a punk rock musician
c : one who affects punk styles
http://oxforddictionaries.com/us/definition/american_english/punk defines "Punk" as:

1North American informal a worthless person (often used as a general term of abuse).
 a criminal or hoodlum.

US derogatory (in prison slang) a passive male homosexual.

 an inexperienced young person; a novice.

2 (also punk rock) a loud, fast-moving, and aggressive form of rock music, popular in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

(also punk rocker) an admirer or player of punk rock, typically characterized by colored spiked hair and clothing decorated with safety pins or zippers.

3chiefly North American soft, crumbly wood that has been attacked by fungus, sometimes used as tinder.


1North American informal in poor or bad condition:I felt too punk to eat2relating to punk rock and its associated subculture:a punk banda punk haircut

Interesting. If we consider the synonyms of punk, we find rebel, deviant, outcast, down-trodden (etc.). It might be very well possible that the current times of world culture are indeed shaping the future of Goth,.......if there is in fact any at all.

By the information and numbers presented before us (I really hate statistics), we can unequivocally say that the "Goth culture and life style" is indeed a "unique sub-subculture". But, keep in mind that these numbers only reflect search term operators used on the internet. This does not account for those people who engage in alternate life styles offline.

Goth Wisdom Guidance - To Those that I love who are different.

 There have been many great and terrible things that have happened in my life as a Goth. Pushed from the brink of blissful rapture, unto seeing my very own kind thrust into the worst of existence. And no, I have no desire what-so-ever to tell anyone how to be or how to live their lives. At best, all I can even remotely begin to do is share(impart some wisdom). Take it from someone who was destroyed, scarred, and brutally beat down by the school-of-hard-knocks, and re-forged in the fire of hard-core survival.

1) There is nothing wrong with being different. Do understand why you are different and clearly realize the consequences of the choices you make.

2) Goth and all subcultures have histories, trends, and ever-evolving events that span the world.

3) Yes, you can be defiant, but that defiance will come with a cost -your life. There is also such a thing as knowing when to step away, back off, or shut up. Trust me, it can save your life.

4) Make sure you are fully aware of the situations you place yourself into. In this day and age, technology is everywhere. Any picture, any text, any online information transaction "can and will be used against you".

5) Goth is always changing. History proves this. Rebellion, defiance, and standing against "systems of the status-quo or normality" is nothing originally new or different. You have an influence upon your culture even if you think you do not. Remember the chaos theory: "The movement of a butterfly's wings can effectively create storms on the other side of the planet."

6) There is a place for everything. There is a time to be Goth, and then, there are times to be cognizant enough to put on the "costumes of normality". All life-styles come with a luxury because of the world of excess we currently live in. So remember, just because you can be Goth any time you want, doesn't mean you should. If your gut or intuition tells you to "dress normal" if you decide to go out or travel, you should choose to listen.

7) Please understand that although this is 2013, and many believe that we live in an "developed information age of enlightenment", it doesn't mean that the acts of violence, hatred, or ostracism have gone away. If it is more than obvious that you make yourself a target by the way you look or act, then it is more than plausible you need to re-evaluate your situation.

8) Learn to think for yourself. You might say, "I know this already." But, do you? The Goth culture is a powerful influence in and of itself. There are as many benevolent Goths as there are Goths that will have no love or mercy for anyone. Goth is exactly like the eternal war of human ego itself; Goth is light and it is darkness. And, it is hard-core reality. Don't fool yourself.

9) Loneliness is still a reality, but if you can find no group of Goths where you live, from the perspective of the illusion of the mind, an online group of Goth friends are as relevant as those in reality. There is a deeper wisdom in this, but it will take a life-time to fully comprehend.

10) Goth culture is a unique way of life, not a privilege, not a right, and you will live and die whether you are Goth or not.

11) Many of the biggest influences of Goth did not even know they were Goth, until a style, trend, or person of significant status within the Gothic community made-it-so. Many of the greatest influences of Goth culture have been dead for centuries. The Goth authorities of the present world will never meet, exceed, or live up to that status, no matter how hard they try. The sad thing in this area is that, Gothic status in present reality is based off of: social network status, economic might to power, and the various houses through-out the world that battle for relevance (networks, clubs, bands/musicians, models,etc.). The original essence of Goth did not find its genesis in any of these things. Once again, if you are not sure, study history and learn the truth.

12) Realize that "Goth" is ideology, or a hat or life-style that you can put on and take off at will. The irony here is that many will attempt to debate this in the defense of whatever their inherent programming has led them to believe. Goth is a learned life-style, an acquired set of tastes, and an ever-evolving archetype.

13) Goth, before it became inundated with "horror, darkness, movies, television, blood/guts/death", was about the beauty 'and' realization of the hard truths of life. In the entertainment age and culture, many who were not Goth or even remotely related, have seemingly influenced the mindless masses that, for what-ever reason, have transmuted Goth into that of which it never was. Albeit that fact, no one has the god-like power to change the course of events that have already transpired.

14) Goth - the term itself has many flavors, styles, and varieties. At best, find what works for you and do not worry about the rest.

15) The value or importance of Goth should be weighed by you unto the manner of which it ultimately has value for you, and enriches your life. If it works for you, that is fine. If it does not work for you, that is fine too.

16) Goth was never as visceral or as elitist as many would have you believe. This was influenced by the egocentric nature of individuals. Their own selfishness conspired to make something that was not their own, into something by which they would attempt to bully and control others because of their ulterior motives.

17) Goth is an effective way by-which you can enrich your life, learn about history and art, and form healthy life-long relationships with others. This will obviously include the necessity of common ground and understanding.

18) Goth is and can be a "life-long" experience. History proves this. The stereotypical ideologies are usually problematic or rebellious youth, individuals who have authoritarian issues, or psychologically deranged individuals. Many of you know this simply is not the case. Doctors, Lawyers, and even a handful of world-leaders have in fact been Goth. But, there is a possibility for "current Goths" to write new histories that can show an extreme difference, and contrasts the normally associated stereotypes. Reality is one thing, and entertainment is another -be careful to discriminate between the two.

19) Goth - dare to look beyond not only what others have told you and what you think it is. Dare to become fully aware of the height, width, breadth, and the unfathomable depths that encompasses what Goth is. Do this not only on the level of reality, ponder the ideology, and yet peer into the very essence and behold all that is Goth.

20) Goth -simply stated, "Goth is an ever changing perceptual reality, by-which we learn about the world and others, through the life-lens and life-path we take, tread by many subcultures and countercultures, fully realized and experienced by a unique extraordinary few."