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by PopMatters Staff

28 Oct 2015

PopMatters (est. 1999) is a respected source for smart long-form reading on a wide range of topics in culture. PopMatters serves as a bridge between academia and popular culture. Thus, our articles are written in an engaging style that is both entertaining and erudite, yet free of stiff and cloistered academic language, and of course, far removed from the novice, the hype and the naiveté that crowds online media.

PopMatters articles appeal to cultural omnivores, historians, pop culture enthusiasts and intellectuals and geeks of many stripes. Our essayists approach their subjects with a strong respect for and knowledge of history—and with an eye toward where they think we may be heading next.

Feature essays are a minimum of 1,200 words, and there is no maximum limit, so long as the essay warrants the length. You may pitch a single essay, or a series of articles. We’d love to hear your ideas.

by Dawn Eyestone

27 Aug 2015

Deadline for essay pitches: Saturday September 11th

Deadline for final essay: Monday, September 28th

Submit your pitches to: PopMatters’ Features Editor Dawn Eyestone eyestone(at)

Email subject line: PopMatters / Auto-Tune

Auto-Tune, that now ubiquitous technology, got its less than humble beginning with Cher’s “Believe”.

Which is better, Cher’s voice before or after Auto-Tune?

But that’s just a rhetorical question, really.

by PopMatters Staff

20 Aug 2015

PopMatters is looking for smart music writers.

We’re looking for talented writers with deep genre knowledge of music and its present and past alongside a cultural generalist perspective with strong interests in many areas of culture.



Regular CD reviews run 500-700 words and display a knowledge of music history and real genre expertise, rather than simply “I like this” or “I hate that”. They should employ a smart look at the music within its larger cultural contexts. Capsule reviews run between 100-150 words.

by PopMatters Staff

13 Feb 2014

With the intent of providing continued intelligent and entertaining content in the PopMatters’ Columns section, we are looking to broaden our staff of columnists and the voice of our writers’ community. We’re particularly interested in writers who live and work outside of the US, but that is not a deciding factor; in all cases, no matter the writer’s locale, we’re looking for those who can approach an array of cultural subject matter from their patch of the world with an international sensibility; that is, contextualize the local with an awareness of its place, historical and current, in the broader world.

Qualified writers are already readers of PopMatters (as but one vital supplement in their varied intellectual diet). They are familiar with the work of our current columnists, as well as other areas of the magazine, and they have a solid sense of what we’re looking for in content and caliber in these essays. We deliberately use the terms “essays” and “columns” interchangeably; as pieces are broad in scope yet grounded in real-world examples, and they are tied to regular deadlines and an established identity (and therein lay the “columnist” element). With these expectations in mind, we have monthly and every-other-month column slots available. Suitable writers are dedicated to regular deadlines and enjoy participating in friendly, ongoing communications with their editor.

by Karen Zarker

28 Jan 2014

Grunge audio speaker image from

PopMatters seeks several essayists who are interested in writing regular, alternating essays on a range of topics in electronic music for the monthly electronic music column, The Difference Engine.

As a magazine of cultural criticism, PopMatters bridges academia and popular culture with smart, entertaining and well-researched writing. PopMatters columns are a minimum of 1,200 words and are broad in scope. We encourage the discussion of ideas over focusing on individual artists (we do a fine job of that in Interviews). See published installments of The Difference Engine here.

//Mixed media

Because Blood Is Drama: Considering Carnage in Video Games and Other Media

// Moving Pixels

"It's easy to dismiss blood and violence as salacious without considering why it is there, what its context is, and what it might communicate.

READ the article