Discuss the issues raised by media ownership in the production and exchange of media texts in the music industry.

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Jessica Perry

Discuss the issues raised by media ownership in the production and exchange of media texts in your chosen media area.

In this essay I will be writing about the music industry. The music industry is dominated by 'the big three' being three major conglomerate companies: Sony, Universal and Warner Music. There used to be four majors however EMI collapsed and split into subsidiary companies that were taken over by Sony and Universal. The major labels own many subsidiary labels too, the 3 majors try and have the widest reach possible therefore their subsidiary companies focus on niche tastes as well as mainstream. According to a Music and Copyright report published in 2012, the majors accounted for 74% of physical and digital sales globally, this means that they operate in an oligopoly where a few companies dominate and control the market. I will be focusing on 1 major and 1 independent record label. The major being Sony, a Japanese transnational conglomerate with their headquarters in Tokyo, Japan. Sony has subsidiary companies such as RCA records, Epic records and Syco music and big artists such as Beyonce Knowles, One Direction and Justin Timberlake. As Sony is heavily involved in cross-media ownership such as Sony Pictures and Electronics, if there is a risk within Sony's music industry, the risk is spread across and the company can still focus on other medias.

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 In contrast the independent record label being Domino Records founded by Lawrence Bell in 1993, based in London, UK. Domino specialises in a niche market with artists signed such as Arctic Monkeys and Franz Ferdinand. It is now one of the longest running and most successful independent record labels in the UK. the major difference between major record labels and independent record labels is the difference of money. Whilst Sony have lots of money to invest in new or big artists, and pay for expensive music videos etc, independent record labels prefer passion over music, they may not have the ...

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