And a funny thing happened, people stopped listening. And the more people tuned out, the more the industry got relentlessly monolithic and homgenized. Now it was no longer consolidation for profit, it was consolidation for surival. And in that environment you never took risks. You did what the numbers and surveys told you. Because the most successful radio stations were the ones who attracted that largest average audience.
But as the industry kept doing the same thing, more and more people got bored with it and wandered off. Other, more fragmented alternatives online got traction instead. Today, more people than ever are listening to music, more people than ever are even buying music, but the number of people listening to radio is at an all time low.
Two useful pieces: it's not piracy that's killing the moive industry and the reason Hollywood makes so many boring superhero movies suggest a similar dynamic is starting among the major studios. As films become more expensive to make, and Hollywood makes fewer of them, they become more formulaic. The giant success of a handful of movies using the formula inspires an ever increasing number of films to follow in their footsteps Consolidation makes it harder for the individual producers that used to interject new and creative approaches to break in and disrupt the formula. With the cost of attending movies continually climbing, and new alternatives becoming available, the audience declines, causing Hollywood to stick even more rigidly to the "proven" formula.
And, over time, you can't break out. Even if some amazing new radio station format broke through, no one would discover it. the potential audience has gone away. All that's left is a rump audience that *likes* the same old crap.
We'll see if Hollywood can learn from the past.