Week 3 -Blog 3: Music Streaming as a Disruptive Technology Within the Music Industry

For many years, the primary platform of music consumption has been through the sales of physical and digital copies. Many years ago, the introduction of MP3 format was argued by some to be one of the most disruptive technologies of the history of the music industry. Ramesh Subramanian & Brian D Goodman (2004) argue that the advent of the MP3 audio format has made the exchange of music all the easier. People can easily digitise their music collections and share them with others using the internet.

In the recent years, the industry has seen a rise in disruptive technologies that have affected the methods of music consumption. Spotify is a great example of a music streaming platform that has utilised the data provided by its customers to persuade more and more people to join the streaming platform. The main issue with the streaming platform is that many in the industry believe that consumers are not paying the full price that the music they are listening to is worth. Listeners are able to pay a little amount of money per month for the ability to access an almost unlimited amount of streaming music. Therefore, from the perspective of the creators of the music and their labels, streaming platforms can be viewed as a disruptive technology that has negatively influenced the wealth of the music industry.

Pandora is another streaming platform that offers similar services to Spotify. David Balto & Matthew Lane (2016) argue that the technology that powers companies like Pandora gives consumers a more personalised experience than terrestrial radio and exposes them to more music that they may like. This is down to the algorithms that these companies utilise to create recommendations of songs and playlists that are similar to the current music material that they listen to.

However, I would argue if someone who primarily listens to ‘Drake’ for example is limited to other drake songs and relative artists as recommendations, these disruptive technologies are wrapping consumers up in a bubble where they are only recommended the same material, and missing out on other genres and artists that they may be potentially interested in.

References: 

Balto, D. Lane, M. (2016). THE MUSIC INDUSTRY AS A CASE STUDY FOR ENABLING DISRUPTIVE INNOVATION IN CONSOLIDATED MARKETS. Disruptive Competition Project.  pp.4-9.

Subramanian, R. Goodman, B.D (2004). Peer-to-peer Computing: The Evolution of a Disruptive Technology. London: Idea Group Publishing. pp.9.

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