“In fact, it’s probable that the Internet will lead to larger blockbusters, more concentration of brands.”
It’s easy to get caught up in the hoopla of a mass of niches (long-tail) instead of the traditional predominance of blockbusters.
The reality is that the hits today are even bigger and even more invasive. But we have a ton of niche selections that (when taken together) are popular too.
There’s room for both big and small artists but no one’s really making money of the recorded content. The album is virtually a marketing piece, an advertisement to promote both tours and merchandise.
Marketing budgets dictate online noise. But at least now the user has the option to discover new and upcoming brands more easily. More people are becoming curators and discoverers rather than lemming consumers waiting to be fed.