Since the dawn of the information age, it’s difficult to find even one aspect of life which remains untouched from then till now. Technological innovations like the smartphone, internet, mobile data, and so many more have shaped our world into a far more technologically advanced, and developed one. Everything from the way we purchase food and groceries, to the way we listen to music has changed with the times.
The world we live in has brought about many concepts and developments which have narrowed the lines between various types of media, resulting in a conceptual phenomenon known as ‘media convergence’. In essence, media convergence can be described as the manner in which different media begin to come together as one as a result of major technological advancement. Ostensibly, media convergence has had a profound effect on the traditional broadcast media which we’re all familiar with. Below are the three main effects that convergence has had on broadcast media.
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On Demand Content
A major change brought about by the concept of convergence in new media, as opposed to traditional broadcast media is the fact that the content which is created can be viewed by anyone, anywhere, at any point in time. Essentially, this mostly leans on the fact that while traditional broadcast media had certain ‘slots’ of programming, which was to air certain pieces at certain times, new media, as a result of convergence, has eliminated the time sensitivity of the matter. Any content can be viewed by any particular individual at their own convenience, additionally, the fact that devices such as cell phones and data connections exist make it so this can also be viewed from anywhere in the world within reason. Conversely, earlier, to listen to the radio or watch TV, you would need either a radio or television set respectively. Additionally, the program of your choice may not have been on at the time you were free, making for inconvenience.
Increased Reach and Coverage
The second benefit that convergence has brought about with the advent of new media is that the reach and coverage of every individual piece of content has increased greatly. While in traditional media, only a certain amount of information could be pushed at one time, through a single medium, convergence has made it so that all kinds of content can be viewed simultaneously A sample group of 100 people could have 100 different, distinct interests, while before, it would be impossible to satisfy them all with a single radio, or television connection. But now, with a single internet connection, all 100 of the subjects would be able to ingest content which suits them, in a manner in which they prefer, since there is no single, solitary method of content delivery, and the reach which even a single site can have through various articles is far greater than any other time before in history.
Multifaceted, Multidimensional Content
Lastly, we come to the final major aspect which varies between traditional media, and new media, with the advent of convergence. This would be that content can be viewed in many forms, using the same medium. For example, in earlier traditional media, print would simply convey words and images, radio would be purely audio, and television would be an audiovisual medium. Each of these would require their own payment, subscription, technology, or hardware to operate. However, now, look at a simple internet connection, with it, you can read news, look at images, watch videos, and listen to audio formats such as podcasts or even live radio on a single solitary device. The content is designed in such a way that people who prefer to ingest their media on a particular format will not be left out, as almost every major news, or story would be available on every requisite mentioned format.