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Hot Topic

From Academic Kids

Hot Topic is an American chain store aimed at teenagers and young adults. It has a large number of stores across the United States, the majority of which are located in shopping malls. The first Hot Topic store was opened in 1988 by Orv Madden. The chain specializes in music-related fashion and merchandise, including clothing, books, comics, jewelry, CDs, records, posters and other paraphenelia. It caters to a number of youth-oriented subcultures and countercultures, such as punk, goth, club, street and lounge, as well as a number of general and 1980s retro pop culture products.

In the past, such major bands as Korn and Good Charlotte have allowed Hot Topic to release their concert wear to the general public before they themselves appear on television or at concerts wearing them. They've also been a heavy promoter of Jhonen Vasquez and his various projects.

Hot Topic also owns and operates a chain of similarly-themed plus-size women's clothing stores, Torrid, which began operations in 2001. The company also produces its own line of clothing, Morbid Threads, whose products may be found in both chains' stores.

Hot Topic's major rivals in its niche include Spencer Gifts and Manic Panic.

Ironically, the consumer that the store targets, is starting to attach a negativism to the name. Hot Topic has been increasingly known as a 'poseur' store, and the more 'hardcore' goth/punk/emo/etc consumers are refraining from shopping at Hot Topic.

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