Article

Theories of Media Economics

Gracie Lawson-Borders

in Communication

ISBN: 9780199756841
Published online June 2012 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/obo/9780199756841-0118
Theories of Media Economics

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The business of media includes economics and research, and studies in the field examine numerous aspects of economics in the industry. The statement has increased in its impact in the digital economy, in which the digitization of data has had a profound effect on the operations of media organizations. The old commercial model based on two primary revenue streams of advertising and paid subscriptions has been usurped by a plethora of entry points in the digital arena. Theories are used to help explain this phenomenon, and as the field of media economics grew, the number of theories, paradigms, and approaches flourished. In addition, theories from other fields are used to study media industries. Research dating to the 1960s examined economic aspects of communication and media in numerous journals. Early research through the 1980s examines the economics of media, the makeup and strategies of organizations that capitalize on their audience and delivery of content. Theories from business and management relative to innovation, markets, and vertical and horizontal integration have been used to address media economics. As the field and scholars expanded the research throughout the latter part of the 20th century, more work honed in on the specifics of media industries and challenges faced due to the particulars of the field, from regulations to advertising and changing markets. In 1995, a special issue on theory and media economics in the Journal of Media Economics, cited under Journals, included work by scholars with various focus across industries on the business of media and economics. The field received a boost with the publishing of the Handbook of Media Management and Economics (Albarran, et al. 2006, cited under Central Texts). The edited text is a compilation of scholars addressing theories, methodological tools, application, emerging technologies, and other changes. Economist Eli Noam (Noam 2009, cited under Central Texts) provides a different perspective in his concentrated look at media ownership and concentration inclusive of the financial elements, markets, and strategies that have facilitated mergers and acquisitions, which created corporations with billion-dollar assets and vast influence on the public. Media economics focuses on the strategies and operations of media companies. In the following sections are samples of research, through articles and books that provide insight into scholarship examining the economics of media.

Article.  7818 words. 

Subjects: Communication Studies

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