by Ashraf Nisfudin
Do It Yourself, or DIY, is a term that is used by various communities of practice that focus on people creating things for themselves without the aid of a paid professional. From music to cinema and theatre to art and even everyday household items, people are sidestepping the establishment and doing things their own way.
Many DIY subcultures explicitly critique consumer culture, which emphasizes that the solution to our needs is to purchase things, and instead encourage people to take technologies into their own hands.
Culture means many things in this context, but at heart it is a suite of traits we inherit and also choose to stress. It consists in part of the arts. It is something made and consumed, in socially revealing ways.
DIY provides people with the knowledge of what humans are capable of producing on their own, as well as with each other. Little currency involved in its transactions and the ethic originates from necessity as well as the lack of monetary funds.
DIY is associated with the international alternative and punk music scenes. Members of these subcultures strive to blur the lines between the creator and consumer by constructing a social network that ties users and makers close together. There is also a community of people who use the term DIY to refer to fabricating or repairing things for home needs, rather than purchasing them or paying for professional repair.
Since through the ages of camp life, and later village and town life, the most common situation has been for people to use local technologies to take care of their needs for themselves and, for most of the centuries now past, even to make their own tools, clothing and so on.