I Believe The Phrase You're Looking For Is 'The Long Tail'

from the yup,-that's-it dept

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.


Rate this comment as insightful
Rate this comment as funny
You have rated this comment as insightful
You have rated this comment as funny
Flag this comment as abusive/trolling/spam
You have flagged this comment
The first word has already been claimed
The last word has already been claimed
Insightful Lightbulb icon Funny Laughing icon Abusive/trolling/spam Flag icon Insightful badge Lightbulb icon Funny badge Laughing icon Comments icon

Comments on “I Believe The Phrase You're Looking For Is 'The Long Tail'”

Subscribe: RSS Leave a comment
13 Comments
dorpus says:

Turning Rock into Classical?

I may give people here a hissy fit by being willing to buy things through i-tunes, but are there music groups that convert rock&roll music into classical? I just discovered a group called “King’s Singers” that does this with Beatles or Billy Joels tunes, turning them into church choir music.

Just Another Joe says:

Plagiarism

After reading both articles, the Time’s piece could boarder on plagiarism because of the similar ideas and arguments. Of course with an endless source of ideas and data available on the web, it could be mere coincidence, but who knows. It would, however, be interesting to read the Time’s response after they read Anderson’s piece.

freakengine says:

It seems that as it gets easier and easier to do research, fewer and fewer reporters are willing to do the legwork. For example, I recently read a Reuters article with blatant factual errors. When I emailed them about it, all I got was a form letter response. I wonder if the editorial staff even notified the writer of the errors.

Leo (user link) says:

A million monkeys

Who was it that said: “If you sat a million monkeys down to type for a million years, statistically one compose Romeo and Juliet”… i butchered it

So credit wasnt given where its due, who cares? At this point, i am hard pressed to believe that anything written on the net is, at its best, not merely a collection of other people’s work cut and pasted with some transitions in betweeen. Need i remind everyone of virtually every high school and college paper they ever wote?

Leo (user link) says:

A million monkeys

Who was it that said: “If you sat a million monkeys down to type for a million years, statistically one compose Romeo and Juliet”… i butchered it

So credit wasnt given where its due, who cares? At this point, i am hard pressed to believe that anything written on the net is, at its best, not merely a collection of other people’s work cut and pasted with some transitions in betweeen. Need i remind everyone of virtually every high school and college paper they ever wote?

Jrock says:

Re: A million monkeys

Virtually? Wrote?!?! haha, all jokes aside, I agree. I think we are getting dangerously close to the point in our existence where unique ideas (and especially unique pieces of written language) are extinct. Come on, nothing anyone says is original. We all put words together in ways we have already heard them put together. And if you think you are the first person to come up with your ingenious idea of recycled toilet paper or whatever it is, you are wrong. A hundred thousand other peanut brains already thought it up and it’s probably patented, or written about, or on the market. We’re all so obsessed with originality but it is just an illusion.

Add Your Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Comment Options:

Make this the or (get credits or sign in to see balance) what's this?

What's this?

Techdirt community members with Techdirt Credits can spotlight a comment as either the "First Word" or "Last Word" on a particular comment thread. Credits can be purchased at the Techdirt Insider Shop »

Follow Techdirt

Techdirt Daily Newsletter

Techdirt Deals
Techdirt Insider Discord
The latest chatter on the Techdirt Insider Discord channel...
Loading...