A Short Aside On The Death Of Pop

Frank Caron
2 min readApr 30, 2023


Ye old Seth Godin, of internet fame, recently posted a missive about the death of pop. Of particular note to me from his was the following snippet:

What does go away, though, is the commercial dynamic of thousands of someones in Nashville or Hollywood hitting it big big big with nothing but a typewriter or a guitar.

I too think we’re on the precipice of moving backward, not forward, in not just how we create content but how content creates commerce. But therein, I see not the death of pop but rather its glorious rebirth, away from the likes (though I may love them so) of XG towards that X Girl from down the street.

The Marvel movies’ use of digitization has dismantled how Hollywood makes magic (and money). I’m long a generation ahead where computer-spawned spectaculars not of a Pixarian persuasion (or perhaps, now, a Miyamotan manufacture) gradually descend from billionaires to beggars.

In their stead, I believe the Zeitgeist will zip back to the past, patronizing more practical, poetic portraits of and by humble humanity — those shot at a fraction of the cost and with more respect paid back to Gaia than the gods of the GeForce variety.

I envision an entire generation embarking on an indifferent rebellion from the digital renders of machines, instead marching back towards the open mic — dumb phones pocket-dipped as they head to the local —with only their access to infinite learnings applied for their own improvement left as the scant evidence of the last generation’s gawdy globalization.

Therein follows the dramatic re-distribution of hit makers and money from afar back far in-land, as both the fear and futility of continent-wide competition coerces and convinces our children to return to a cooperative and compassionate consumption from the local community.

So then could an optimist read the intersection of globalization’s ongoing failure and machine learning’s fleeting fabrications as not the end of work and death of culture but rather catalyst for a return to the very community we’ve lost.