Research paper sources

So far in my research I have developed a better understanding of the long tail theory as a whole and how it is relevant in the music industry.  Althought the many articles I have come across in my search so far have been somewhat conflicting.  Some bloggers say that the effects of the long tail have benefited independent artists, while others say it is hurting them.  According to a chunk of articles I read, 77% of total revenue in the music industry comes from the top 1% of big-name artists alone. Even with our modern ability to search for music infinitely has not changed people’s taste of sticking with the artists who are a part of the biggest labels.

The music industry has become a “superstar economy” in which the big artists saturate the market.  In the original theory explaining how the long tail would be benefitial for independent arstists, and even out the distritbution (in some cases it has) but mostly it has hindered small artists moreso.

This is because with the rise of digital content it has caused the superstar’s to thrive because of the lack of ‘front end display’ on digital devices.  Also, the fact that listeners are overwhelmed by the “tyranny of choice”, having too many options in which there are endless possibilities of new music to discover.  This theory states that excessive choice actually hinders discovery.

However, all these sources have been on my first two pages of google, and I plan to continue to dig deeper to find more information about this conflicting idea.

Blake Hagerman




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