ZER Journal of Communication Studies: Continuity, change and disruption in the culture industry

Guest editor is Ana I. Segovia, who is a professor at Complutense University of Madrid. The monograph will be published in the 53rd issue of the journal ZER in November 2022.

The deadline for the submission of papers is 15 July 2022.

The last decade has witnessed radical change in the culture Industry as a result of the arrival of new actors from other fields who have attained a dominant position in the cultural-communicative flow. Emerging from the field of new technologies, these players now exert a universal influence that is even greater than that of the massive, hegemonic communication groups of the cultural-communication scene of the 20th century. Moreover, they are creating a unique media ecosystem that is still in the development process. This transformation at the hands of Google (Alphabet), Amazon, Facebook (Meta) and Apple, which are the companies that comprise the so-called GAFA (or GAFAM, if we add Microsoft), has been accompanied by the appearance of additional players. Companies such as Netflix in the audiovisual sector, or Spotify in the music industry, which are linked to the production and distribution of content supported by the development of new technologies, have managed to change consumption habits and business models. Consequently, they have compelled even traditional players to undertake profound adaptive strategies in order to compete in the new environment. Their arrival has meant that one of the media industry’s dominant forms of financing, which is advertising, has shifted toward the digital realm. According to a State of the News Media report (Pew Research Centre, 2021), spending on digital advertising in the United States already accounts for 63% of total expenditures, or approximately $152 billion (2020), which is 8% higher than the previous year. In fact, 2020 represented a decisive turnaround in the US newspaper industry, as circulation revenue from sales and subscriptions surpassed advertising revenues for the first time in five decades. Regarding the music industry, more than half of its revenue came from streaming in 2019, vastly outpacing other sources (Digiworld Yearbook 2020). Finally, in the audiovisual sector, revenues from OTT platforms are expected to multiply. An example of this trend can be found in the growth rate in Europe, which is forecast to increase from 23% in 2021 to around 40% in 2030 (Future TV & Digital Content, Idate Digiworld, 2022). Given this scenario, the monograph aims to take a critical approach to addressing the changes that have taken place in the culture industry over the last decade from a broad perspective, which encompasses both the transformations in consumption habits as well as those related to the production, distribution and management of communicative-cultural content.

Some of the relevant issues to be considered are the following:
• Changes in cultural consumption habits over the last decade, considering the entire realm of the culture industry from a broad perspective.

• Strategies used by communication companies in adapting to the new environment: Business models and market conditions. • Change and sustainability of cultural policies: monopoly, concentration, and diversity.
• The role of public media in the new scenario.

Professor Segovia works in the Department of Journalism and New Media at Complutense University of Madrid (UCM), where she teaches courses in Estructura y Sistema Mundial de la Información (The Structure and System of World Information) (undergraduate), Teoría de la Información (Information Theory) (undergraduate), and Sistemas de medios: política y economía (Media Systems: Politics and Economics) (postgraduate). She is currently a member of the Committee of the PhD in Comunicación Audiovisual, Publicidad y Relaciones Públicas (Audiovisual Communication, Advertising and Public Relations) at UCM. Moreover, from 2016 to 2020, she served as president of the Spanish delegation of the Unión Latina de la Economía Política de la Información, la Economía y la Cultura (Latin American Association of Political Economy of Information, Economics and Culture. Her academic and research interests have focused on the configuration of the information system, as well as on the political, economic, and social circumstances by which it is defined, based on the study of the structure of ownership and communication policies. Her most recently published works include the book entitled, Grupo Prisa: Media Power in Contemporary Spain (London/New York: Routledge, 2020), in collaboration with Luis A. Albornoz and Núria Almiron, as well as book chapters in conjunction with other authors in works that include El Modelo de Propaganda y el control de los medios (The propaganda model and control of the media) (Comunicación Social Ediciones y Publicaciones, 2019), and Periodismo y nuevos medios. Perspectivas y retos (Journalism and the new media. Perspectives and challenges) (Gedisa, 2020).

Languages for contributions: English, Spanish, Basque.

No payment from the authors will be required.

ZER. Journal of Communication studies: https://ojs.ehu.eus/index.php/Zer/index

ZER. Journal of Communication studies index and databases: https://ojs.ehu.eus/index.php/Zer/indexacion

Miguel Ángel Casado

Co-editor, ZER. Journal of Communication studies

Faculty of Social Sciences and Communication

University of the Basque Country