The story has been repeated in all the usual places without much added value, but one very interesting detail I can see through the monotony of text spilling over this study is the assumption – suggested here and here (PC Pro, free registration required), with repeated reference to the film High Fidelity – that women are more comfortable downloading online than amidst the macho snobbery of specialty and indie record shops.
If this assumption is correct, then digital downloads, iPods, and other music handsets may play a role in reconfiguring the gendering of music consumption and audition.
Another really interesting detail: the Emap study found that women are seeking opinions about music in magazines marketed to men (such as Kerrang) more often than they did in the past. How might this contribute to our understanding of text, face-to-face interaction, and ‘rich media’ in a gendered model of music discourse?
Questions to tackle a bit later on, when I’ve got a bit more of a scholarly foundation to build that tent city on.