What Is Subvertising? A Proposal of Delimitation and Definition

The understanding of “subvertising” has been approached from different perspectives as a phenomenon framed within the Culture Jamming movement. Even though both subjects focus on the symbolic guerrilla communication system, the specific allusion to corporate and advertising culture delimits the subvertising field of study. However, it seems that the two phenomena are analysed jointly by the literature that has addressed the subject, so that the terminology used for reference and analysis can be imprecise and confusing. This study aims to clarify the terminology used in literature to refer to the concept of “subvertising” and its actors. For this, data was collected through a previous scoping review, in which 253 documents focusing on subvertising dating from between 1980 and March 2020 were located and analysed. The main terminology used to refer both to subvertising and to the actors who carry it out was extracted and classified. The results highlight an excessive terminology used in this field of study, as well as a lack of correlation in linking subvertising object and subjects. Possible consequences of this finding may lead to a problem for the standardisation of the discipline and publications transfer, especially in the academic world.

activism, advertising, anti-advertising, contrapublicidad. culture jammer, culture jamming, subvertiser, subvertising, symbolic subversion

DOI: https://doi.org/10.34135/communicationtoday.2023.Vol.14.No.1.4