25 People Who Hate When You Use the Term “EDM”


Over the last few years, the term EDM has been a blessing and a curse for fans of dance music. Its emergence came at a time when the world (well, primarily America) started to take a shine to dance music in ways we’ve not seen since the Electronica craze in the 1990s. Acts like David Guetta, Skrillex, and Deadmau5 were making lots of money, be it touring or hitting the charts, with their music. The media and the music industry responded in kind, and the EDM push began. While “EDM” as a term legitimately means “electronic dance music,” the timing of the push definitely raised eyebrows and scorn, as it was seen as a way to monetize on a side of the dance music scene that many feel is cheap, easy, and not representative of the whole of dance music, or even reflecting on electronic dance music.

Enter 2013, the year where everything’s changing. Not only is DAD on the scene, but you’ve got Diplo pitching EDM movies, Afrojack signing to Island Def Jam, and Avicii “going country.” EDM is being thrown into many different arenas, with hopes of being the next sound to revitalize a generally stagnant period in music. If EDM is the shot in the arm that’s needed remains to be seen, but from Las Vegas to Hollywood, the DJs and producers of today will be thrown into any arena accepting, hoping that the dollars will follow.

Here at DAD, we don’t bother with the “shallow context” that many of you feel when you hear “EDM.” We’ve been around dance music for years, and scoffed at the term “Electronica” when The Prodigy and the Chemical Brothers were making waves on this side of the Atlantic. We are old enough to understand the mainstream’s need to put things they don’t understand into compartments. We’ve shopped in the “electronic” section of our local mom and pop stores for years, finding Amon Tobin albums right next to Aphex Twin singles. It’s just what happens. So while we get why people who’ve followed dance music in its many machinations are against using the term “EDM,” its not something we shy away from. DAD looks at EDM as just that: electronic dance music. DAD also makes it a point to cover what we like, be it the latest from the more popular side of dance music to the freshest talent that’s emerging in worlds that aren’t as notable.

When we hit you with “five reasons you should call it EDM,” we knew there would be a group of readers who didn’t agree. No one can agree with everything, especially such a hot topic like the use of EDM to describe dance music. As you can see from the tweets above, there are a lot of people (both known producers and dance music fans alike) that don’t subscribe to the term. DAD tends to look at the situation like Tommie Sunshine or Eric Prydz does: it’s the term that people are using now, and it does fit with what we’re about. We’re smart enough to know the differences between dubstep and trance, but know that there are still these compartments that the scene in general fits in. We’re not saying everyone can or will agree with this, but to deny the terms being used right now – terms that aren’t going away anytime soon – isn’t the answer. Maybe its time we reexamine and redefine.

In any case, take a look at the tweets up top, and let us know what you think about the use of “EDM.”

  • Lewis Nesbitt

    EDM is just a term that Americans use because they think Dance music is only being rediscorver or transformed now.

    Dance music has been loved and feverishly adored by europe and the uk espically since the late 80′s early 90′s. It never left.

    The term is just a buzz word, something that hipsters use to call dance music.

    The moment it disapears from festivals is the moement when dance music is back to normal

    • Joe Bousetta

      Too bad Americans invented disco, house, and techno. Why do Europeans always have to insult Americans?

      • khal

        good question.

      • Tom Simeone

        american’s are lazy, and don’t want to call it by its name.. House (tech house, funky house, prog, tribal) etc etc

        • FUCK EDM

          that’s because unlike Europeans, Americans don’t know shit about the sub-genres – or the major genres either. Tribal? Nice, but I seriously doubt todays millennials have fuck of a clue as to what Tribal is and they don’t care either. Unless Tiesto or Guetta or Armin start playing it that is. Then it would be the next big thing. BRO I LOVE TRIBAL!!! BUT WHERE’S THE SICK DROP?? totally would happen.

  • http://twitter.com/SelektaFuzz Selekta Fuzz

    I’ve been using the term EDM for over 10 years, since it’s better at describing electronic music that you can dance to than, say, “electronica” or simply calling everything “techno.” Understood, it’s a buzzword, it blew up, it’s changed the scene, blah blah blah. It’s still the most accurate term.

    • http://www.facebook.com/liamcurry Liam Curry

      Just say “dance music”?

      • sleepster

        Charlston is dance music too

      • Tom Simeone

        Just call it house music, techno, trance, disco,

        Tech-house, prog house.. etc etc. its so easy. its lazy fucking Americans

    • FUCK EDM

      calling it Electronica actually made more sense, EDM impllies DANCE MUSIC – Electronica meant ALL FORMS of Electronic Music including Ambient, IDM, Downtempo stuff.

      • Sam Harris

        EDM only includes dance music imo, not idm or chill electronic music… but if you think about it, is Dubstep even “dance music”. Its not really great for dancing to. So is it not EDM? lol

    • http://www.facebook.com/herbertlye Herbert Lye

      10 years? Where r u from Fuzz ? cannot be, the term ‘EDM’ only floated up these recent 3-4 years, I’ve been listening to progressive trance, uplifting trance and breakbeat for the past 15 years, nvr heard of the term ‘EDM’. It’s jz some sleazy typical American marketing strategy to make it commercialized and fake DJs are coming out too. We dont want these kind of pollution as much as we appreciate the music n the culture.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/liamcurry Liam Curry

    It’s just “dance music”. Always has been, always will be. EDM needs to die, the same as “addicting”.

  • EDM

    Seriously, EDM EDM EDM EDM EDM. Who gives a shit, if it weren’t for that term, people (Non- European) would find the crossover into other genres under the “EDM” umbrella unbearable because of the differences. Just because it has started in europe and has dominated for years there, doesn’t mean that it’s an entitlement. I’ve been listening to trance and house music since I was a kid. Now I listen to drum and bass and electro/house dubstep and trap. If you continue to think narrow mindedly it will just harm all the genres. You don’t see Americans bashing on the world because 90% of today’s music has jazz and blues influences. You don’t see the Japanese raging about the others using their 8-bit sounds to produce music.

    • CaptFloatNboats

      This guy doesn’t even no were house music started. It came from Chicago in the usa.

    • FUCK EDM

      oh please. A lot of people who were a part of the underground scene in the 90′s GIVE A SHIT – EDM is not an umbrella. Electronic Music didn’t start just in Europe either, Techno and House started in Detroit, and Chicago.

  • Ronnie M

    The term “EDM” has been around a long-ass time, long before all these little kids jumping on the bandwagon who call themselves so-called “house music-lovers” caught wind of it. Back when people were so ignorant, they were referring to all types of EDM as “techno”, which is even worse. So don’t hate on the term just because you’ve only recently heard of it. It has been around for a while. I do agree that now that EDM has become so much more mainstream (especially in America), people are using the term “EDM” out of ignorance, because they really don’t know the difference between all the different genres. The reason why they use the term “EDM” is because they don’t know the difference between house (and all it’s sub-genres: tech house, progressive house, etc.), trance, techno, dubstep, drum&bass, breaks, and all the other genres in EDM (which is pretty sad). Most people don’t know anything else besides what is mainstream

    • khal

      thank you.

    • FUCK EDM

      “LONG ASS TIME” – yeah. the last 10 years. really long time man. Nobody, I mean NOBODY called it EDM in the 90′s or before that. NOBODY.

    • FUCK EDM

      from what I can tell on these forums is that “EDM” at one time started in the underground and it made sense and was used as an umbrella term. But once the mainstream got a hold of it, it was used to pretty much describe Electro House and Dubstep and now the term no longer has the same meaning it once had.

  • Werser

    I think what we can get out of this is that many people don’t realize that EDM is a catch-all term for describing what is otherwise difficult or superfluous in searching for a smaller sub-genre to lump something in.

    • khal


  • Weaver2

    “EDM” is the worst thing to happen to electronic dance music. Not the term, but everything it stands for now. Not but FIVE years ago the rave was still a rave. Now it’s drunk frat boys and slutty girls who “JUST LOVE TRANCE” as the DJ plays electro house song. Also, none of them seem to know how to dance, but that’s kind of subjective.

    “EDM”, to me, signifies the death of rave culture and marks its transition into club culturevia hostile takeover from the masses who have no idea what existed before or the wonderful scene they’ve ignorantly destroyed. Kandi and PLUR. Was it cheesy? Of course. But it was ours, dammit! Now it’s gone.

    Now, people shuffle on their feet in place. Van Buuren does his “Jesus pose”, the crowd goes wild and another dagger is driven into my heart. RIP the rave. More than a decade ago when I was in highchool I was a consistent outcast, but the rave and the people… they were the first ones to make me feel welcome and at home. I felt safe and at peace. It was the only place I could experience the music I loved, with others who loved it; I felt happy, for just one night, goddammit I was happy.

    But that’s dead now. The masses had to take something I loved and destroy it in corporate funding, insane ticket prices, intrusive sponsorships and horrible, douchey, aggressive people.

    • David Hawryshock

      Dont judge people just cause you apparently know and define everything. There’s new comers everyday, even if they mixed up the term trance vs electro, at least its better than “YO THIS DUBSTEP TECHNO IS DOPE”. Seriously get over yourself.

      • FUCK EDM

        NO. I agree 100% with Weaver2, this was OUR music, it was underground, when you went to a rave party (not some giant sponsored festival) you felt like it was a close knit community, today it’s just a bunch of pop kids listening to pop music because they don’t know anything about Electronic Music or the history.

        The worst thing is how there are no websites out there trying to actually inform these newbies today about the history of the music, by not doing so, these kids think these new genres like Brostep and Electro House are THE genres to listen to. And that is HORSESHIT.

        So I really hate these new sites like Do Androids Dance, YourEDM, and Magneticmag – these sites show the music off like it’s POP music and they DO NOT INFORM the kids today of the history. And the USA Mainstream is COMPLETELY misinformed as a result.

        • ari

          boo fucking hoooo hipster. get over yourself. shit like this happens all the time. deal with it.

          • FUCK EDM

            Hipster? do you even know what that means? Hipsters are FAKES, I grew up with this music, I remember when it was called Electronic Music. Not my fault you have no idea about the music at all. Not my fault I was addicted to it and had over 1000 vinyls in the 1990′s when I was DJing. Not my fault I know about IDM, Ambient Music, Trip Hop, and other genres that the newbie generation has no clue about because it isn’t Electro House or Dubstep.

            so you get over yourself pal, I ain’t no hipster fake.

          • idontdigtechno

            who the fuck do you think you are to define what is true to music?, if people like it, that’s the end of the discussion. I fucking can’t stand people who bash on stuff just because it’s popular…..you do realize that you are defining what you like and what you don’t like based on the stuff other people listen?

          • Rattlemebones

            Man you are the definition of pretentious.


    whatever, it’s EDM, i think it’s stupid but i don’t really care if people use it. it makes sense i guess. but something about it bugs me. dunno what. whatever. who cares. i do but i don’t. do you know what i mean? as a word it’s like, whatever.

    as an actual thing though, EDM is like… just mainstream dance. radio-friendly dance. club-friendly dance. which is kinda crappy but serves a purpose doesn’t it? as one person down here said, it’s not *actually* dance music cause, well, cause foxtrot, charleston, cha-cha, whatever. people are always going to argue over labels, which really only serves to obscure the music itself because people get stuck on stereotypes of certain music. like i just did with EDM – i generalised and said “kinda crappy”. but whatever. tl;dr i didn’t even read this myself as i wrote it.

  • Berry

    “25 people who HATE ….” Wow, how exactly are these 25 people very much into the real rave culture and the whole original meaning of PLUR , since they go around hating on minor things like the term EDM… People should finally realize that music is like technology let’s say, it changes and new trends come. Next thing you know, people start hating on computers and wish we could use typewriters again. If true ravers from “back in the days” really care so much, they could help improve the current state of the EDM culture, instead of constantly hating and criticizing..

    Don’t forget what PLUR stands for after all!

    • FUCK EDM

      yeah I know what PLUR stands for. It was started in the FUCKING 90′s at TRUE UNDERGROUND rave parties – not GIANT SPONSORED FESTIVALS. It was started as a community thing, then the internet came. And in the message boards it was all this PLUR posted left and right. Then the mainstream got a hold of it, and were like OH MAN PLUR PLUR PLUR even though we really don’t know the history behind it or what it really means!

      “help improve the current state of EDM culture” – so help improve the state of Pop Music culture?

    • http://www.facebook.com/herbertlye Herbert Lye

      Then Berry, clearly u dunno who Mat Zo is (one of the 25 Twitters). Google yourself before making your judgements. PLUR and EDM are American cultivated ‘Kandi’ terms, but again, not straightly against these terms.
      Yes, i used to think like u as a 15 years long electronic music listener, esp progressive trance, uplifting trance & breakbeat. Yes, it’s not the term but it’s the culture that this term was being invented and cultivated, which resulted loads of crappy DJs and fake producers these days. This is what we call music pollution. There’s nothing wrong with the term ‘EDM’ if anyone wanted to use it, we’re just here to raise more awareness based on our observations about the evolution of electronic music on how much we appreciate the music and the scene.

  • j

    EDM means modern commercialised americanisd souless loud crap to me

    • FUCK EDM


    • Almark

      I 2nd that, people aren’t hearing “real” Electronic music.

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  • LiveItUp

    Call it what you want, at the end of the day it’s music that brings people together from all walks of life around the world and I can appreciate that. I can also appreciate the sites that promote more than 1 or 2 sub-genres, like edmfestivals.info

  • David

    EDM ruined all.

  • Mr.R

    EDM is nothing more than a bastardization of house music. At least here in Chicago.

    As Armand Van Helden once said, “And wait.. you’re late, trance sucks in case you didn’t update. It’s white, too white, republican nazi white”.

    ^^ Pretty much sums up today’s “HOUSE” & “EDM” culture.

    Somehow trance, euro trance, dubstep has been labeled house music and got thrown into the mix as “EDM”.

    I see people use House & EDM interchangeably and then recite Kaskade, Skrillex, and other trance & dubstep arists as house music. Just sad..

  • Aaron Anandarajah

    EDM is an umbrella term incorporating anything from Chillstep to Hardstyle, but I guess everyone here knows that already. My point is, it’s the easiest way to describe your musical taste to ppl, just like how Rock is an umbrella term for so many different subgenres, same goes for EDM. Think about his, for a person who likes Deep House, Progressive, Uplifting Trance and some Electro, won’t it be easier to just say i like EDM?

    • FUCK EDM

      no it’s not an umbrella term if the people who listen to the music don’t even know or follow any of the non-popular genres. Look at what you mention for fuck sake: Chillstep (fairly new genre), Hardstyle (fairly new genre), Progressive (progressive what?), Electro (so you mean ELECTRO HOUSE?). So please tell me how much IDM you listen to? how much Ambient? how much experimental? yeah ZILCH. THAT is why it’s not an umbrella term.

      • Aaron Anandarajah

        Geez someone must have stuck something up your arse. Those were just examples i gave, doesn’t matter if they are fairly new or not, in any case I wouldn’t consider hardstyle to be a new genre.It’s more than a decade old. Newer than trance or house yes, but its not a new genre by any means. You purists irritate me just as much as those bandwagon jumping molly-fied raver kids of today. EDM is an umbrella term and its a term that is going to stay, whether you like it or not.

        • FUCK EDM

          LOL. I love it “PURIST” or “HIPSTER” I’m called.

          how about the fact that I am NEITHER. I LIVED this music from 1990-2006 and I HATE what has happened to it. That makes me a “Purist”? That makes me a “Hipster”? NO.

          EDM may have been an umbrella term at one time, I will give you that. But not anymore. Now it is simply associated with Electro House, Dubstep, Trap, Drumstep and any other new genre made up in the last 5 minutes.

          that is why when this music finally does DIE, and it will, I’m hoping we can just go back to calling it what it is, Electronic Music.

    • http://www.facebook.com/herbertlye Herbert Lye

      @aaronanandarajah:disqus Agree, it’s an umbrella, but not a solid roof to describe electronic music isn’t it? easiest way? why not jz EM (electronic music)?
      Yes, @FUCK EDM has made his point clear enough, that’s why long time listeners like us don’t agree with the term ‘EDM’, it’s jz another evil American marketing plan in the industry.

  • Jon Christian Dagata

    I don’t understand the hate behind the word EDM. I get that it is mainstream. And I understand that people use that term in place of an actual understanding of a subgenere at times.

    But I enjoy many many different kinds of electronic music. Dubstep, Trap, Glitchhop, D&B, Trance, ect ect. I could list them all day.

    Here is a list of many but not all i’m sure:

    What is the “right” way to refer to my liking of all different types of electronic music without offending people and at the same time getting the message across to a laymen?

    • FUCK EDM

      making my point once again: “But I enjoy many many different genres of electronic music: Dubstep (PRETTY MUCH POP MUSIC), Trap (MORE POP MUSIC), Glitch Hop (another NEW POP MUSIC genre), D&B (really? like LTJ Bukem or the lame shit on YouTube made with the same digitized sounds heard in Electro House tracks?), Trance (nobody makes Trance anymore, all the new so called “trance” is just a variation of Electro House). Etc, Etc. Huh? PLEASE TELL US HOW MUCH AMBIENT YOU LISTEN TO? HOW MANY IDM, EXPERIMENTAL TRACKS YOU HAVE? ETC ETC.

      another young kid with no clue about Electronic Music or the history. PERIOD.

      • Jon Christian Dagata

        Anger issues much? The real issue here is that some people are so ignorant and stubborn in their ways that they are afraid to watch something evolve and change over time. Nothing stays the same. NOTHING. On top of that you sit here and judge me, and bitch about how your music is ruined now that it is becoming mainstream, and bash/hate on everything that is new instead of educating the newcomers on what the history of electronic music is, what you are passionate about, and why exactly you feel this new direction of electronic music is so messed up. Maybe if you helped change the direction and contributed instead of fighting it like an old man speaking about “back in my day”, you could see a really great future for electronic music. But I have a funny feeling you’d rather watch the world burn.

        • ari

          thank fucking you

    • http://www.facebook.com/herbertlye Herbert Lye

      @jonchristiandagata:disqus Again, no anger here, jz my opinions about why we dislike the term ‘EDM’.
      i used to think like u as a 15 years long electronic music listener, esp progressive trance, uplifting trance & breakbeat. Yes, it’s not the term but it’s the culture that this term was being invented and cultivated, which resulted loads of crappy DJs and fake producers these days. This is what we call music pollution. There’s nothing wrong with the term ‘EDM’ if anyone wanted to use it, we’re just here to raise more awareness based on our observations about the evolution of electronic music on how much we appreciate the whole electronic genres in our own interests :D

  • doubleshotespresso

    I hate that people get their panties up in a bunch about this stupid crap. It’s just a term. It would be the same as someone getting upset over someone else calling Cannibal Corpse Metal because it should be “Death Metal”. If anything, the massive amount of sub-genre terms annoy me more than the umbrella terms. Death metal is still metal. House is still EDM.

    I’ve been listening to rock/electronic music since I was born (thanks Mom <3) back then, I just knew it as "techno". I much rather "EDM". Why does everyone get pissed when their favorite artist? What, would you rather the artist not get recognition for their great work and struggle?

    • http://www.facebook.com/herbertlye Herbert Lye

      agree @doubleshotespresso:disqus, i used to think like u as a 15 years long electronic music listener, esp progressive trance, uplifting trance & breakbeat. Yes, it’s not the term but it’s the culture that this term was being invented and cultivated, which resulted loads of crappy DJs and fake producers these days. This is what we call music pollution. There’s nothing wrong with the term ‘EDM’ if anyone wanted to use it, we’re just here to raise more awareness based on our observations about the evolution of electronic music.

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    The DEMF this year will be “EDM-FREE”

    imagine that DEMF is a FREE festival with TRUE electronic music artists unlike the EDM $$$$$$$ ULTRA festival with wannabe POP stars.

  • mikek09

    EDM labels you as someone who is not knowledgeable enough to know what the subgroups or history of electronic music is.