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Media Consolidation And The Negative Impact On The Internet

1579 words - 7 pages

It is imperative that people understand the concentration of media ownership also referred to as media consolidation. This term refers to a course of action whereby a few individuals or organizations control an increasing share of the mass media. Research reveals increasing levels of consolidation with many media industries that are already highly dominated by a very small number of organizations. Media consolidation is closely related to issues of editorial liberation, media bias, and freedom of the press (Common Cause 2007), which are usually discussed by those who view it as dangerous to society. This paper will argue that media consolidation via the Internet is disadvantageous to ...view middle of the document...

Roshay Reddy, manager of Vanderbilt University’s WRVU-FM, said that media consolidation can increase funding through additional sponsors and provide new ways to finance projects and innovative music, especially for independent radio stations (Huebsch 2010). Media consolidation can also help companies adapt. In an article Huebsch said, “Corporations with greater resources can provide stations and channels dedicated to specific niche markets and provide experts with more exposure to the three main types of media; newspaper, radio, and internet.” (Huebsch 2010). The final positive impact on businesses due to media consolidation is increased potential. A 2003 study by Pew Research found that one out of every six Americans gets their news solely from the Internet and media consolidation would help to cohesively mesh network and cable news programs with the World Wide Web (Huebsch 2010). Though positively effecting businesses, the effects on citizens are detrimental. Media consolidation detracts from our democracy, diminishes net neutrality, and paves the pathway for large businesses to take over minority businesses and push them aside.
When it comes to citizens and media consolidation, the results are unfavorable. When big media get too big, independent and minority owners are pushed out of the market, leading to fewer voices and viewpoints, less diversity in ownership and programming, and less of the unbiased critical journalism we need to prevent abuses of power (Free Press 2008). When summed consolidation presents unfavorable consequences for average Americans and jeopardizes the valued current standard of democracy.
Media consolidation within the Internet market will greatly affect how we have come to know the Internet as a media outlet. In the past fifteen years we have seen the media change in a way that has created an entirely new dynamic (Common Cause 2007). The growth of the Internet has created a new medium that allows for truly democratic participation in our government. The Internet has made the First Amendment of the Constitution a living document for Americans in a way that no other medium has before (Common Cause 2007).
America believes in net neutrality, the principle that Internet users should be able to access any web content that they desire, post personal content, and use any applications as they so choose; without limitations or restrictions imposed by their internet service providers (Common Cause 2007). Media consolidation will banish these views and our hopes for the future use of Internet worldwide. Cable and telecommunications companies providing the bulk of Internet connectivity will use new fee structures, which may favor some content providers over others (Diller 2006). Net neutrality is the sole cause that the Internet has grown exponentially as a medium, fueled innovation and altered current communication standards. Media consolidation has allowed phone and cable companies to have a near monopoly over internet...

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