Social Media Makes Me Famous: A Perspective From the Music Industry

Response to Douglas Rushkoff’s article: “On The Economy of Likes”

In this generation, social media has transformed into a lot more than just a platform for communication. Social media and its ‘likes’ as Douglas Rushkoff mentions in his article published on Rhapsody, becomes a commerce and a consumer culture.

Many companies such as Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr and Snapchat have grown exponentially over the years and have gained a lot of value. In this article, Douglas Rushkoff focuses on how social media is changing the music industry. Artists have such easy access to their fan bases through social media, that those without it are a step behind.

Social media is there for people to continuously follow what artists are up to and at the end of the day, networks like Twitter keep artists famous. This is because nowadays uploading music online rather than releasing music and selling records has become a norm. Artists like Justin Bieber, Rihanna and Katy Perry have millions of followers and take their social media accounts seriously because most of their opinions are channeled that way. These artists not only change the relationship between fans and artists, they also change the commerce behind social media and influence the “economy of likes.”

“Young stars must develop social-media networks in order to “make it.” But once they’ve made it, the main thing they have to sell is not whatever they’ve come with, but the social-media networks they’ve amassed. Yes, a pop star can make some money on a tour, but the bigger prize is becoming a media property oneself.”
-Douglas Rushkoff
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