Masterlist :: What Does Indie Mean To You?

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by Tara Swiger

Masterlist :: What Does Indie Mean To You?


Inspired by Mita’s post on what indie means to us at Vianza, I got curious - what does indie means to other businesses, especially those who refer to “indie biz”.

After much too much Googling later, I discovered something: very few people who use the term “indie biz” (especially as a blog tag) ever define what the term means to them. There are a zillion business-advice people out there, all wanting to help you in your indie biz...but none of them are defining it.

I find this disheartening (and from a marketing perspective - tragic! Define your terms, so your Right People recognize that you are, in fact, talking to them!) but there were some bright spots.


IndieFixx asks artists to define what indie means to them (in her Indie Artist Fixx) and their answers range from the practical, to the hilarious. Here’s a sampling:


"Indie to me is being free from any restraints and being able to create anything to your own desire."

-Upper Metal Class


"In the most obvious and literal sense it’s short for independent and that’s what it’s all about to me. I have a strong motivation to be more self sufficient. To take the road less traveled, explore, experiment and teach myself."

-Hier Apparel


Indie is a label that makes you sound cool… and I use it daily.

-Love, California


Outside the indie biz world, I found some other people defining indie music in a way that applies to the kind of indie businesses we love:


"A real indie artist is someone who chooses that route because it’s the road they want to take... They take their careers into their own hands, and they do so both intentionally and with a bit of business sense behind their decisions."

-Jenn Mattern


"Simply put, "indie" means independent from the mainstream...being indie means embracing a noble set of values--namely authenticity, experimentalism, anti-commercialism, DIY and appreciation of the world beyond American pop culture."

-Indie Culture


And of course, there’s the excellent conversation about Indie vs. Corporate from a few weeks ago.


Photo Credits :: Katherine McFatridge 


What’s indie mean to you?


Wanna make it public? We’re looking for all kinds of designers, retailers, and service providers to answer the question in an upcoming blog series. To contribute, just email me :