What really is Long tail media? Long tail media, in its base definition, is “some distribution of numbers is the portion of the distribution having a large number of occurrences far from the “head” or central part of the distribution.” This distribution involves popularity, random numbers of occurrences of events with various probabilities, etc. Many internet companies have used this “business model” Ebay, Google, Amazon, iTunes, Audible, LoveFilm, etc. So basically, over the internet, this long tail via mass media affects culture and mass media usage.
But this long tail creates an era of prosperity for a certain number of businesses. Facebook, Netflix, streaming sites, media that can be consumed on the regular!
The term long tail was coined by Cooper Anderson in 2004, editor of Wired magazine. “Anderson observed that products that are in low demand or have low sales volume can collectively make up a market share that rivals or exceeds the relatively few current bestsellers and blockbusters, if the store or distribution channel is large enough … The Long Tail is a potential market, and successfully tapping in to that long tail market is often enabled by the distribution and sales channel opportunities the Internet creates…”
Essentially the long tail is a business model that was created due to the creation of Web 2.0. The internet had changed the economy and the way business is run so much, it essentially created a more prosperous business model for certain types of media, product, etc.
“The Long Tail has strong implications for culture and politics. Where the opportunity cost of inventory storage and distribution is high, only the most popular products are sold. But where the Long Tail works, minority tastes are catered, and individuals are offered greater choice.
In situations where popularity is determined by the lowest common denominator, the Long Tail will thus lead to improvement in a society’s level of culture. Television is a good example of this: TV stations have limited time slots, so the opportunity cost of each time slot is high; stations therefore choose programs that have the broadest appeal. But as the number of TV stations grows or TV programming is distributed through other digital channels, the choice of TV programs grows and the cultural level rises…”