Friday, December 2, 2016

Contemporary Media Convergence

As the world becomes ever smaller, the media has condensed itself and diversified too. "Franchises" have emerged, capturing large audiences and dollars by branching into different forms, such as t-shirts plus TV plus CD. Technologies for the transmission of media have been developed to access many different types of streams, like movies plus music plus telecommunication.

One of the larger "franchises" of contemporary culture is Pokémon. The franchise is so large, in fact, that I didn't have to type that accent mark. It autocorrected in straight from Blogger. Pokémon was already huge in the past, with video games, an animated television program, plushies, and trading cards, but now the franchise is even larger.

Pokémon Go is, of course, a video game, but really it's more than that. It's a Virtual Reality game of a kind that the world has yet to see a lot of. The Pokémon franchise seemed to be drying out a bit, even as the big 20th anniversary approached. Then Pokémon Go came around and blew open the flood-gates.

Another example of a successful "franchise" that uses convergence is NBC's The Voice. Not only is The Voice a television program, but it is also a huge money-maker on iTunes with .mp3 downloads.

Media convergence is making our world smaller, perhaps, as the world becomes smaller on its own in different ways. It has tightened some economic standards, but, while it may need to be watched, seems to be making for some very interesting developments.

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