Of the various ideas about how the internet would change the entertainment industry, perhaps none have been discussed more thoroughly than Chris Anderson's theory of the long tail. As everyone would seem to know by now, the basic idea is that niche works, or older, forgotten ones can become valuable assets once the industry is no longer bound by the constraints of a physical store. So it seems odd that an article in the New York Times, on what lessons Netflix has for the entertainment industry, would cover this area exactly, without any acknowledgment of the extensive work that has already gone into studying this idea, such as Anderson's original piece. Obviously, writers don't have to cite each one of their influences when they're doing a piece, but acknowledging the important work in an area signals that the writer is up to date in the area. There's an irony in the Times article too, in that the intro is nearly identical to Anderson's original piece. Both discuss the way that the internet helped to turn a forgotten gem into a hit once again -- it seems that with a little scouring on Google, the author of this piece might have discovered Anderson's original work.
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