Digital developments and music circulations in Port Vila (Vanuatu). How music in the digital age involves human relationships.

Abstract : Since the year 2000 Port-Vila, the capital of Vanuatu, experienced an important development of the digital technologies that strongly influenced musical behaviours of the "youth". The mobile phone market has taken off with the arrival of the company Digicel, launched in June 2008 with a huge free concert by an American artist Collie Buddz. At that time, nobody suspected the role that mobile phones were going to play in the transformation of the local musical circulation. Statistics show an evolution of access to mobile phones from 0.2% in 2000 to 54.1% in 2009. The use of Internet has also increased from 1.6% in 2000 to 7.8% in 2009. The possibilities of digital storage have been very quickly exploited to download, listen, transfer, exchange music, and mobile phone has become an indispensable tool for young musicians and music amateurs. The Copyright Act, a law for the protection of copyrights, was passed in Parliament in 2000 but was not published for over 10 years. It is only with the project of adhesion of Vanuatu to WTO (World Trade Organisation) in August 2012 that the country joined the WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization) in February 2011 and then gazetted the Copyright Act. While copyright can be seen as important for the development of the local music industry, its implementation faces challenges, given that the circulation of local music occurs largely outside of the formal market system. Furthermore, musical exchanges are engrained in the culture of the archipelago and, alongside circulations of the old systems of musical knowledge, Internet and mobile phones have created new networks of exchange and circulation of musical culture. Music exchange relations have developed in town around objects gradually introduced throughout the archipelago's history. Exchanged mainly by "young" men, music in digital form circulates along with objects like cigarettes, alcohol, and cannabis. Thus, music plays a special role in sharing practices.
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Contributor : Monika Stern <>
Submitted on : Monday, October 5, 2015 - 3:05:44 PM
Last modification on : Thursday, January 18, 2018 - 1:30:00 AM


  • HAL Id : hal-01211661, version 1



Monika Stern. Digital developments and music circulations in Port Vila (Vanuatu). How music in the digital age involves human relationships.. ICTM 43rd World Conference 2015, ICTM, Jul 2015, Astana, Kazakhstan. ⟨hal-01211661⟩



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