THE MEDIA INDUSTRYIn this report, I will be covering many different subjects todo with the media industry. This will help anybody interested in careers for amedia sector. This report will contain information about different types ofmedia ownerships, as well as ethical issues involved in these. This is to fullygive you knowledge of what is contained within the media industry.
PRIVATE OWNERSHIPA privately-owned company is funded primarily through advertisement.For example, ITV is a private ownership and unlike BBC which is public servicecompany, they have adverts in between their broadcasts allowing them to makerevenue to continue funding more shows. Another private owned company isYouTube, which is a video broadcasting website which allows content creators toupload and share their own videos to generate views, and eventually when havingenough of a following, money. The way that the content creators and YouTubemake their money is through ad-revenue, which they will gain when they haveearned a certain amount of ‘subscribers’ and views. The way this is done isthrough a system called ‘Monetisation’. When a video on YouTube is ‘Monetised’,Adverts will be shown throughout the video allowing both the creator andYouTube to make money, so much money in fact that a lot of ‘YouTubers’ havebeen able to use it as a full-time job.
Having a privately-owned company canhave a lot of advantages, as some companies who want their products advertisedare willing to pay a lot of money to get it done. A disadvantage of privateownership is that what is produced might not be exactly what the audience want,whereas for companies such as the BBC, they research what the audience wantbefore producing a show, possible taking more of the audience’s interest.Commercial broadcasting, also known as private broadcasting once again usesadvertisement to fund their broadcasts. These can often be the case withPodcasts as it allows the public to create their own broadcasts and earnrevenue from doing so. However, this would only be the case for large podcastswhich would gain the interest of companies who would want to invest, smallerpodcasts would be independently owned meaning the fund themselves without thehelp of advertising or the government. PUBLIC SERVICE MEDIAA public service company is purely funded through the government,which everyone who uses a TV pays for with a ‘TV License’. A public servicecompany must listen to what the audience want.
If the public complain, thenthey will have to make changes to give the consumers what they want, and if ashow doesn’t get many views, then it will be cancelled. One of the biggestexamples of a public ownership is the BBC. The BBC is funded by the governmentpurely to inform, educate and to entertain, giving the audience exactly whatthey want rather than what they want to create. This is an advantage for theaudience as the BBC do a lot of research into what the audience wants for allages, genders, sexualities and religions. A disadvantage of this is that a lotof people don’t want to have to pay for a TV license, and would much ratherwatch purely on demand, or sign up to other services such as Sky which doesn’tonly fund one channel. As well as TV, the BBC are also very well known fortheir radio stations which is very interactive with the audience and like onthe TV, they are always making sure that they are playing what the audiencewant to hear.
MULTINATIONALSAmultinational company is a business which is distributed in multiple countriesaround the world. An example of multinational TV company is Comcast, which isthe largest broadcasting and cable TV company in the world by revenue, andbroadcasts to millions of homes all around the globe. Most film companies arealso multinational, this is to allow the creators of the film to gain the verymost out of the movie and as well as that there is no reason for it not to beshared. This is especially the case as Hollywood, where most of the biggestfilms are created is only in one country. A reason for a movie not to be sharedamong a country is when the countries believe the movie will cause offence oris too explicit for their population.
For example, if a movie was to contain aNazi symbol along with relative content, the movie would most likely be bannedfrom being broadcasted in Germany. All this information is the same for Animations and Video games. They too are shared among allcountries, as there is no reason not to be unless the country doesn’t want itbeing distributed there. An example of a video game being banned in anothercountry is the game ‘Wolfenstein’ a franchise about the protagonist who youplay fighting the Nazi powers and is set in a world in which the Nazis won thefirst world war. This was banned in Germany for Nazi references. CONGLOMERATEA media conglomerate is a largecompany who own several other smaller companies who distribute certain forms ofmedia to consumers. Viacom is an example of a conglomerate company, they ownmultiple different television channels such as MTV, Nickelodeon, GlobalEntertainment Group, CMT, Comedy Central, BET Networks, Logo TV and many more.
DIVERCIFICATIONDiversification in the media iswhen a company decides to branch out into different media sectors, for examplea company does television broadcasting branching out in to radio broadcastingor internet streaming, this is diversification as the company is diversifyingwhat they do, creating a more diverse company. An example of a company whichhas diversified is most newspaper companies such as the Guardian Media Groupwhich originally developed newspapers but has since started producing onlinenew content and created radio stations on which they can share some of thestories and events covered in their newspaper but in a much faster time frame.Film companies can also be multinational, however on a slightly smaller scale,for example they can create lots of completely different types of movies, andthe same goes for animation businesses. VERTICAL INTEGRATIONVertical integration is when amedia company owns several companies at different stages of production.
WarnerBros is owned by Time Warner, which is a huge multinational media conglomerate.Harry Potter, a huge movie franchise, is a good example of how Warner Bros hasused vertical integration to increase the potential earnings from productions.Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part Two was created by Warner Brospictures, in association with Heyday Films. It was then distributed by WarnerBros Distribution. HORIZONTAL INTEGRATIONHorizontal integrationdescribes the merging of two or more companies at the same point in theproduction process in the same or different business.
If the products offeredby the companies are the same or similar, it is a merger of competitors. One of the clearest examples ofhorizontal integration is Facebook’s acquisition of Instagram in 2012 for areported 1 billion dollars. Both Facebook and Instagram operated in the sameindustry and were in similar production stages regarding their photo-sharingservices. Facebook, looking to strengthen its position in the social media andsocial sharing space, saw the acquisition of Instagram as an opportunity togrow its market share, increase its product line, reduce competition and accesspotential new markets. MEDIAMERGERA merger is an agreement that brings two existing companiesinto one new company. There are several types of mergers such as the onestalked about above.
Mergers are commonly done to expand a company’s reach,expand into new segments, or gain market share. MEDIATAKEOVERA takeover is when a company makes bids to take control ofanother company to expand their business into other sectors. This is usuallymade to be beneficial for both sides of the deal, such as a large sum of money.An example of a takeover is with the video game Minecraft. Back in 2014 thehuge business Microsoft decided to invest into buying Minecraft after seeingits huge success. They paid the original creator and owner of Minecraft around2.5 million dollars for the game.
ETHICALISSUESIn themedia industry, for all sectors, there is always forms of ethical issues thatmust be worked around. These include offensive content, racism, sexism etc.Ethical issues aren’t bad in a legal way, it is not illegal to distribute apiece of work whether it be a film or game or a book that contains potentiallyoffensive content. However, it can affect the creator of this product or thepopularity of the work. One example is with YouTube, when it had first becomepopular years ago, any ethical issues were expectable, but now, contentcreators are being affected as if their content does contain stuff that is notappropriate to some audiences, then it will be what is called ‘demonetised’.
When a video is demonetised, the creator cannot gain any money from the video,and no advertisements will be contained within it. Television is similar. If a program containsgraphic or offensive content that may cause offence, other companies may not wanttheir products being advertised or not want to sponsor the program. Anotherissue often involved in TV shows such as documentaries or news reports areprivacy. Often, a show will show something or tell something that may beprivate or personal information about someone, something they may not havewanted the world to know. If this does happen, the subject of the leakedinformation can sue as they did not give permission for it to be broadcastedand this can often bring down a shows reputation. For radio and news companies, there is oftenmany ethical issues.
The main ethical issue with these is once again, privacy.When it comes to news reports or talk shows, they tend to not consider therespect of other people’s privacy and personal information. This can result inpeople charging the companies as they had never given permission for theirinformation to be leaked. It is believed that kids watching violentaction movies can be brainwashed by them into committing crime themselves andhurting or bullying others. This can often be a big issue as it is sometimesthe parents first thought when their child acts in a violent way a largepercentage of children watch extremely violent films. These movies tend toleave psychological scars on a child. Child-based movies and cartoons doinfluence the thinking and behaviours of millions of 21st century children. For video games, the impact it is thought tohave on children is also a very large problem, parents and other adults believethat the mass amount of violence in video games is affecting children andcausing more bullying and other forms of violence.
Another ethical issue invideo games is when a game has too much explicit or offensive content, this cancause people to dislike the game or possibly have a biased opinion on any othergames by that company. When it comes to advertising, this is often the worstfor ethical issues. There have been countless adverts in the past that hascaused many complaints to ASA (Advertising Standards Authority) to get them removed.
A lot of adverts cause offence to certain viewers by expressing their productin an unintentionally absurd and offensive way. One example of a company doingthis is the toiletries company ‘Dove’. In their advert they presented a blackwoman and showed her removing her top where underneath she had a white top andthe woman was replaced with a different, and now white woman. The advert wasadvertising soap and it is believed the point that was supposed to be putacross is that it is very good ad making you clean, however, the advert wasviewed and reported as racist because it is considered to be calling blackpeople unclean. LEGAL ISSUESCopyrightis a form of protection for a creator, it allows the creator to have rights tocontrol the ways in which their material may be used. This is used to preventothers from stealing your idea and making money from it. However, copyrightonly protects your actual projects rather than the idea of it.
For example, ifsomebody created a shooter game, somebody else can create a very similar gameso long as it uses different graphical designs. You can copyright anobject/asset, but not the idea of it. Often, the creator will also have theright to be identified as the author and to object to distortions of his work.Copyright is an automatic right and arises whenever an individual or companycreates a product. To claim copyright, the work should be regarded as original,and exhibit a certain amount of judgement or skill. Titles, names, shortphrases and colours are not typically viewed as unique/original or substantialenough to be covered, however, something that combines these together, such asa logo, might be. The offences that can be claimed as copyrightwithout consent of the owner are copying the work, renting or selling copies ofthe work to the public, showing or broadcasting the work in public and adaptingthe work.
The creator of the work may also have moral rights to be identifiedas the creator, or the right to derogatory treatment (deletion or addition and changesto the work). The Broadcasting act 1990 is a law that waspassed by UK parliament to create a legal framework on the electroniccommunication. The act containsa provision on the regulation of independent television, sound programme andother services provided by TV and radio frequencies. The Official Secrets Act 1989 replaced a section from theOfficial Secrets Act 1911, under which it was a criminal offence to discloseany official information without lawful authority. The 1989 Act creates offencesconnected with the unauthorised disclosure of information in six specifiedcategories by Government employees. The categories are security andintelligence, defence, International Relations, Information which might lead tothe commission of crime, foreign confidences and the special investigationpowers under the Interception of Communications Act 1985 and the SecurityServices Act 1989.The Obscene Publications Act 1959 applies to televisionand covers material which is obscene, whether it is in a person’s possession orit is published or broadcast.
A TV broadcast is deemed to be obscene if itseffect or the effect of any one of its items is, if taken as a whole, hastendencies to deprave and corrupt anyone who are likely, having regard to allrelevant circumstances.The humanrights act was a law passed in 1998 allowing all British citizens to have theirown rights and freedom. Human rights are the basic rights and freedoms thatbelong to every person in the world. They are the fundamental things that humanbeings need in order to thrive and participate fully in society. The rightsthat were given with this law are the right to life, freedom from torture,freedom from slavery or forced labour, rights to liberty and security, right toa fair trial, no punishment without law, respect for your private and familylife, freedom of thought, belief and religion, freedom of expression, freedomof assembly and association, Right to marry and start a family, Protection fromdiscrimination, right to peaceful enjoyment of your property, right toeducation, right to participate in free elections, and finally, removal of thedeath penalty. The Human Rights Act 1998 has a real effect onour everyday lives in the UK. It has been used to protect older people who are beingabused in care homes, to ensure that disabled children are provided withtransport to get to school, and to protect women from domestic violence.
Theinternational community has agreed several key specifications of human rights:- Humanrights are universal, they belong to everybody in the world.- Humanrights are inalienable, they cannot be taken away from people.- Humanrights are indivisible and interdependent, all the different human rights are important for human beings toparticipate in society. REGULATORY BODIESTheAdvertising Standards Authority is the self-regulatory organisation of theadvertising industry in the United Kingdom. The ASA is a non-statutory organisationand so cannot interpret or enforce legislation.
This organisation reviewscomplaints by the community for television advertisements. When they get acomplaint they review the advert to check if what the complaint says is trueand whether it is enough to have the advert removed.The Officeof Communications, commonly known as Ofcom, is the government-approvedregulatory and competition authority for the broadcasting, Telecommunicationsand postal industries of the United Kingdom.
This company reviews televisionshows and similar to ASA they investigate complaints. For example complaintswhere made about a Big Brother live show as one of the cast swore before thewatershed when children could have been watching.The BritishBoard of Film Classification, previously the British Board of Film Censors, isa non-governmental organization, founded by the film industry in 1912 andresponsible for the national classification and censorship of films exhibitedat cinemas and video works. This organisation is who sets the age ratings ofall the movies released in the UK. The age ratings the use are U (Suitable forall), PG (Parental Guidance), 12A (Cinema release suitable for 12 years andover), 12 (Video release suitable for 12 years and over), 15 (Suitable only for15 years and over), 18 (Suitable only for adults), R18 (Adult works forlicensed premises only).The PressComplaints Commission (PCC) was a voluntary regulatory body for British printednewspapers and magazines, consisting of representatives of the majorpublishers.
The PCC closed on Monday 8 September 2014, and was replaced by theIndependent Press Standards Organisation. This organisation investigatedcomplaints from news reports and papers.