November 27, 2005
Point of Purchase

The 2003 book Point of Purchase was released by Routledge and was written by Sociology Deparmtent of Brooklyn College.

As with Branded, the book attempts to study the current pattern of consumption in America today and what might be driving this desire to constantly own and consume.

Marshall Fishwick, who is a retired professor of interdisciplinary studies at Virginia Tech and a pioneer in popular culture studies, reviewed the book for the September 2005 edition of The Journal of American Culture, praising what is a macro study of the compulsive consumption phenomenon in America.

However, once again, it appears the work looks at the advertising process and commercialism from a perspective that puts all of the power in the hands of the advertisers, with the drive for consuming becoming an obsession for customers who are ultimately not fulfilled by their constant rate of purchasing.

As with its predecessors, this book demonstrates the current lack of understanding of fan communities and the empowerment fans receive from these brands and properties.

Fans have gained many new ways and avenues to demonstrate their power through their use of brands in fan communities, whether that be fan fiction, discussion boards or clubs, videos, parodies, or the endless other ways fans have gained in power, sometimes much to the chagrin of companies who are uneasy with what fans might want to do with their copyrighted material.

Books such as Point of Purchase, despite their potential merits, demonstrate the lack in most analytical works at this point to look at fan communities in a meaningful way.