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The Ringtone DialecticEconomy and Cultural Form$
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Sumanth Gopinath

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780262019156

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262019156.001.0001

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The Annoying Thing: Crazy Frog and the Strange Career of a Sample

The Annoying Thing: Crazy Frog and the Strange Career of a Sample

(p.133) 5 The Annoying Thing: Crazy Frog and the Strange Career of a Sample
The Ringtone Dialectic

Sumanth Gopinath

The MIT Press

This chapter examines the history of the Crazy Frog as the first of three case studies of sound-file ringtone creation and use, characterised by individual, non-professional, and anonymous cultural production. Originally a sound recording that the creators licensed for use as a ringtone, the chapter interprets its unprecedented ringtone derived aesthetic form and its popularity among newly empowered child consumers. It highlights the cultural effect of the Crazy Frog, the economic consequences for its parent company, and the ringtone fad as a whole. Its overreach and decline is seen in the light of the pre-recessionary conjuncture in Europe and the UK.

Keywords:   Crazy Frog, ringtone, sound file, pre-recession, cultural production

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