The internet has affected many industries with the ease of access to information and the enhancement of communication channels. The media has also been affected by the internet. With the ease of getting information from the internet, the media content is becoming easy to get. One of the disadvantages that the internet has brought to the media industry is the piracy which has been made more profound with the use of this new technology. The internet has become a medium through which media content can be accessed and abused. This is becoming an issue to the content producers. The artists and the players of the music industry have become concerned about the destructive effects that the internet has brought to the media industry. Although these have been issues of concern, there have been new developments where media is exploiting the internet in order to benefit from the rich marketing potential it comes with it. There are new marketing techniques that are being developed in order to ensure that the internet will benefit the media industry. This paper will focus on the different issues and effects that the internet has brought to the media industry (Bryant and Mary Oliver 42).
One of the issues that have been of concern to the media players is the piracy that has come with the introduction of the internet. Digital piracy has been enhanced by the internet. This piracy has affected the growth and the investment of the media and recording companies. From reports on the internet, it has been found out that more than a quarter of internet users get access services which are not authorized on the internet in a month. Some music segments are seen to be diminishing although there are improvements which are seen to be developing and will improve the music industry. South Korea has introduced new laws on piracy where there are internet laws that govern the use of media content. These laws have been widely adopted. It is at the backdrop of these that there are improvements that are seen to be taking effect with the use of the internet on media content (Burley 27).
One of the problems that have been associated with piracy is that of peer-to-peer. This has been a major concern for not only the music industry, but for the book publishers, and film producers also. Peer-to-peer (P2P) is a way in which computers are connected together on the internet so that they are able to share information directly with one another. The popularity of P2P increased with innovations that were brought by Napster and Kazaa companies. P2P brings with a way in which the sharing of files is undertaken effectively. With this system, the client computer will make a request to share files with the host computer without the sharing of any resources. This method has been outdated, though. When Napster was sued in 2001, it created a sharp increase in the use of file-sharing technologies (Haythornthwaite 29).
There was the development of new technology that files were shared. With this model, a node can be a host for the files in the network. This eliminated the need to have a central hub on the internet. With this model, a person must download a program that is used by the other computers in the network. This would allow the node to share the files with the other nodes in the network. These popular programs that were supposed to be downloaded include Kazaa and Gnutella. With time, there were other technologies that were introduced like LAN sharing models, and digital ripping had adverse on the media industry.
Effects of file-sharing on the media industry
With the development of file-sharing technologies, there were the effects it brought in the media industry. The music industry has depended on the sale of albums in order to make profits. This sale dwindled with the use of the internet. This is because consumers preferred some selected songs from an album. This has been the source of damage that is seen in the media industry. Consumers would prefer to consume a single track from a given album instead of buying a whole album. This preference led to the rise of piracy where consumers would turn to piracy in order to access a single track. This has turned the focus of the recording industry where they have not been turned to fighting piracy and downloading of music files from the internet. Piracy of music files has been made easy with the availability of the internet. Due to competition, the decline in the profit margin in the UK was 13% in 2003 to 4% in 2009 (Sisario 72).
Every year, there are more people who are listening to music. It has not been ascertained whether this trend will be beneficial to the media industry. In the United Kingdom, 79.5% of adults listen to music on a daily basis while 69.4% listen to music on the radio on a regular basis. It is only 23.3% of music listeners buy a CD from a shop in a month. More and more people are getting accustomed to music listening due to the popularity of reality TV shows like American Idol and X Factor. One thing that is not known is whether the music listeners will increase the sale of music files and media because the music listeners can download the music they listen to from the internet in an illegal manner. One trend that is coming out is that the winners in these reality shows have been able to increase sale of their albums significantly.
One way in which the internet has affected the music industry is the marketing aspect of the music content. The recording industry has reduced their costs on conventional advertising. The advertising has been affected with the advent of the internet.
New paradigm shift
With the introduction of the internet, there was a paradigm shift in the use of the internet. There are new ways that are being developed to exploit the internet by musicians in order to get the benefits from the wave of downloads. There are many younger people who are using the internet to satisfy their music desire. The trend is that the people who buy albums from music shop are significantly reducing. This is giving way to a younger generation which is eager to listen to music.
Most musicians who have been contacted pose that they have been able to make money from file-sharing than from the traditional album-sharing. There are many artists who are benefiting from file-sharing than those who are not benefit. The use of the internet has brought a new paradigm shift in access and use of internet content. There has been the development of Digital Rights Movement (DRM) which is tasked with the control of how consumers make use of the content they get from the internet. This has been driven with the advent of the internet. The Digital Rights Movement is a way in which hardware manufacturers, publishers, and the holders of copyright materials control how consumers access and use media entertainment content. There are restrictions that consumers have met when trying to make copies of the media content to their mobile devices (Madden 182).
There was the development iTunes from Apple which made use of DRM adversely. With the use of iTunes, individuals were able to purchase music files from the internet. This is another paradigm shift that was seen with the development of the internet. One of the restrictions that were made on the iTunes restrictions include the number of computers and the software that could be allowed to play the files. This was a major shift in the use of the internet to access media files. These restrictions enabled Apple to check the rate at which the files were redistributed on the internet. It enabled Apple to have the licensing for distributing the music files on the internet. After sometime, these restrictions were dropped so that it was now possible for Apple to have variable prices for the iTunes music. Currently, iTunes is now label-free so that consumers are able to access the media content freely and in a flexible manner.
This shift has been achieved after various challenges and arguments on the content that was being shared. There have been struggles for hackers to make the digital content available. For every new protection technology that was developed by the Digital Rights Copyright, there was exposure that was undertaken by the hackers who lay in waiting to make the content available. With the internet, the exposure has been made possible with the sharing of technologies. One of the most notable hacker technologies in the use of DRM technology was the use of Magic Marker to disable the protection technology that was used on the digital copy. With the advent of the internet, the DRM technologies and the protection of the music files use this technology became a tough sale for most consumers (Johnson, Mahmoud, and Sothirajah 28).
The emergence of the ‘we’ media
With the internet, there has been the development of a new form of media. The availability of publishing software, communication technologies, and mobile technologies which are evolving has enabled citizens to observe and report on news faster than the traditional media. This is the age of the ‘We’ media where there are many amateur journalists on the loose. There are many countless blogs, media sites, and various websites which has increased the availability of news. There are more amateur journalists that are creating news items and pointing out errors on mainstream news. This is changing the process of producing news in the world. The internet is changing the way people access their news. There are comments which are being made by people who read the news so that there are counterpointing the items which have been posted. This is increasing the responsibility that comes with news posting. With the growth of the internet, many people are turning to online news sources for news and information.
Although there is growing fear on this new trend, there are many traditional news outlets which are adopting this development and publishing their news online for online users online. Mainstream media houses have added the blogs abilities in their websites so that they are able to publish and share their news items on the internet. Content from users are used as source items on the internet. News from online sources and blogs has been scanned by mainstream news outlets so that they are used as source of leads and news items. There is a trend where main bloggers are being hired in order to work as news developers. With the use of the internet, journalists are able to blog from courtrooms and in places where events are taking place. This makes news updates possible; with these capabilities, it is possible to get news in almost real-time basis.
With the use of the internet, news consumers are shifting to online participatory source of news. Mainstream media sources are turning to interactive news outlets as the favorite means, this is shifting the media model. The media is moving away from the broadcasting model and towards a model where multitudes and audiences also have a voice and want to communicate. This is away from the model where a few individuals communicate with multitudes. The ‘We’ media is shaping the news industry. It is enabled through the use of the internet and the availability of information sharing. The journalist is being turned to informing the multitude but the way they are informing and how well they encourage the sharing of information. The news media is changing gradually.
This interview is done to a high school graduate in rural Australia who listens to music on the internet.
Researcher: Hello, kindly tell me your name
Michael: My name is Michael
Researcher: Tell me about yourself
Michael: I finished my high school last year and now waiting to join university
Researcher: Thank you. How often do you use the internet?
Michael: I am a fan of the internet. I socialize with the use of the internet, I get my entertainment content from the internet, I get information from the internet, and I also access news content from the internet.
Researcher: That is interesting. How current is the music and media content that you claim to get from the internet
Michael: I get the latest music from YouTube.
Researcher: What technology can you credit with this possibility? What has made this possible for you?
Michael: The internet has made these possible. I have a smart phone which enables me to access this information. I have been able to access information from my phone and from my laptop which has high connectivity to the internet
Researcher: Do you think this is helping the artists?
Michael: There should be new technologies of sharing and paying this music but we, the consumers, should not be denied the opportunity.
Researcher: How can you rate the process that you get music and media content with the traditional process of getting news and buying music albums?
Michael: This new process of using the internet has made this process important and simpler. With this, I am able to get information faster and in a reliable manner. The internet has made this process simple.
Researcher: Thanks Michael for your time. Have a great time.
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Johnson, Thomas J., Mahmoud AM Braima, and Jayanthi Sothirajah. "Doing the traditional media sidestep: Comparing the effects of the Internet and other nontraditional media with traditional media in the 1996 presidential campaign."Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly 76.1 (1999): 99-123.
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Sisario, Ben. Defining and Demanding a Musician’s Fair Shake in the Internet Age. 2013. Access on 2 Jan 2014 from http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/01/business/media/defining-and-demanding-a-musicians-fair-shake-in-the-internet-age.html?_r=1&