YouTube’s Effect on the Music Industry

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Digital media has had a vast effect on American society, and it continues to revolutionize the way things work. One of the main outlets for innovation in digital media is the website, YouTube. It has paved a way for the sharing of videos to a multitude of audiences. More specifically, it has profoundly affected the way the music industry works, by providing independent artists a way to release and share their music to a mass audience without the help of a major record label. Often called “The YouTube Effect,” it has become a phenomenon in the music industry.
Bindu Swetha (2013) noted, “YouTube was launched in 2005 by former PayPal owners Chad Hurley, Steven Chen and Jawed Karim. Prior to YouTube, there was no website that enabled users to share their favorite videos on a website” (para. 1). The fact that YouTube was the first website to allow people to post and share videos is one of the reasons YouTube has had so much success. YouTube users can upload content to the site and share it for millions to see. Christopher Cayari (2011) found that, “YouTube has become the third most visited website in the world – behind Google and Facebook” (YouTube Has Affected Music section, para. 2). In October 2008, YouTube attracted 100 million American viewers a day, estimated to be over two-thirds of the Internet users in the United States (comScore, 2008).
Cayari (2011) said that YouTube is a technology that challenges the way we perceive music, musician and audience (YouTube Has Affected Music section, para. 3). When you take a look at the number of musicians who have gained recognition simply by using YouTube, you can see the truth in Cayari’s statement. A few of the artists who are well-known for making their start on YouTube include Ty...

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Cayari, C. (2011). The YouTube Effect: How YouTube Has Provided New Ways to Consume, Create, and Share Music. International Journal of Education & the Arts, 12(6). Retrieved November 8, 2013, from comScore, press release. (2008, December 9). YouTube attracts 100 million U.S. online video viewers in October 2008. Retrieved November 8, 2013 from
Miller, D. (2011). Celebrating YouTube's Influence on Music. Music Business Journal, 02. Retrieved November 8, 2013, from
Swetha, B. (2013, May 28). How YouTube Has Changed the Music Industry. Retrieved November 8, 2013, from
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