test.ical.ly | getting the web by the balls

Jan/13

21

Internet media economy – peeling away the shell

eggshellAt the beginning of this year two big media retailers HMV and Virgin Megastore have shut down. Video rental stores Blockbuster went bust. Newspapers are dying.

Are prices really the reason behind the success of Amazon, iTunes et al.?

Buying from the internet is often cheaper but when I think about the contant offers in HMV stores I don’t think that Amazon, iTunes et al. always won the price game.

Buying or renting or streaming or reading from the internet is more convenient though rather than going out to the shops.

So is convenience – or to put it in perspective the laziness of the customers – the reason for more and more media consumption happening on the web?

I think so but as a reason it isn’t sufficiently explaining its effects.

All media whether it is text, audio, imagery or moving pictures has one thing in common: it doesn’t have a physical form. All physical storage media are artificial; Blu-ray, DVD, CD, Paperbacks, Newspapers, .. all of these products have been invented to let you carry their contents to your home and enjoy them to enable contents to be distributed in a physical world.

Despite their characteristic feel their benefit is questionable as in times of high bandwidth, open wifi and basically every electronic equipment being a computer with an internet connection all of these physical shells have no more use other than nostalgic.

So is this the end of all media content?

Not at all. There will always be people producing music, pictures, film, news and stories. But the middleman the one who wraps their work in a shell and takes care about the distribution will be replaced. A process already taking place.

More will shift to the web and more will desert the high street.

But there will always be media content.

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