MP3 and virtual communities

To understand the MP3 format from a social point of view it must be placed in the context of the Internet phenomenon.

The fundamental idea of ​​interactivity and free exchange of ideas and files which is intrinsic to the Internet, has been extensively exploited in the case of MP3. In 1999, the Napster website was created. This site was a platform for the free exchange of music tracks in MP3 format. In such digital platforms, individuals could find a wide range of open access music resources. Indeed, this has created a virtual community of individuals who have come together due to their similar consumer interests 16.

This is the process that sociologists, notably Kozinets, call re-tribalization or e-tribalization 17 . Indeed, the technology of MP3 and its direct application in the field of music has had the subsequent effect of creating various virtual communities such as Napster or which focus on music. For this purpose, there are now an extensive number of websites which are dedicated to the free transfer of music where users can exchange their music files 16 .

The increasing influence of virtual communities has also had the effect of developing the so – called E ‒ Tribal Marketing 17 area of ​​thought . Reflections in this area qualify consumer behavior in the Internet Age and suggest additional considerations necessary to design more modern Marketing strategies 1

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