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Media conglomerate

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A media conglomerate, media group, or media institution is a company that owns numerous companies involved in mass media enterprises, such as television, radio, publishing, motion pictures, theme parks, or the Internet. According to the magazine Nation, "Media conglomerates strive for policies that facilitate their control of the markets around the world."[1]

These conglomerates exist all around the world, and they became a standard feature of the global economic system in 1950.

Terminology[edit]

A conglomerate is a large company composed of a number of smaller companies (subsidiaries) engaged in generally unrelated businesses.

Starting in 2007, it was questioned whether media companies actually are unrelated. Some media conglomerates use their access in multiple areas to share various kinds of content such as news, video and music between users. The media sector's tendency to consolidate has caused formerly diversified companies to appear less diverse because, compared with similar companies, it isn't diverse. Therefore, the term media group may also be applied, however, it has not yet replaced the more traditional term.[2]

U.S. examples[edit]

In the 2016 Forbes Global 2000 list, Comcast was America's largest media conglomerate in terms of revenue, with The Walt Disney Company, Time Warner, CBS Corporation & Viacom (both are controlled by National Amusements through supervoting shares), and 21st Century Fox comprising the top six.[3]

International examples[edit]

Like the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand also experience the concentration of multiple media enterprises in a few companies. This concentration issue is an ongoing concern for the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission, the Australian Communications and Media Authority and New Zealand's Broadcasting Standards Authority.

Criticism[edit]

Critics have accused the large media conglomerates of dominating the media and using unfair practices. This can be seen in the news industry, where corporations refuse to publicize information that would be harmful to their interests. These practices are also suspected of contributing to the merging of entertainment and news (sensationalism) at the expense of the coverage of serious issues. They are also accused of being a leading force behind the standardization of culture (see globalization, Americanization) and are frequently criticized by groups that perceive news organizations as being biased toward special interests.

There is also the concern that the concentration of media ownership reduces diversity in both ownership and programming of TV shows and radio programs. There is also a strong trend in the United States of conglomerates eliminating coverage of local politics in broadcasting, and instead using broadcast automation and voice-tracking, sometimes from another city or another state. Some radio stations use generic satellite-fed programming with no local content, except for the insertion of local radio ads.

Notable examples[edit]

Comcast 21st Century Fox Walt Disney Co. National Amusements Time Warner Sony (Japan) Bertelsmann (Germany) Vivendi (France) Televisa (Mexico) Grupo Globo (Brazil) ABS-CBN (Philippines)
Movie production studio Universal Studios 20th Century Fox Walt Disney Studios, UTV Pictures (India) Paramount Motion Pictures Group, CBS Films Warner Bros. Sony Pictures Motion Picture Group (US) UFA StudioCanal Videocine Globo Filmes Star Cinema, Cinema One Originals, Skylight Films
TV production Universal Television, Universal Cable Productions 20th Century Fox TV, Endemol Shine Group (NL JV) ABC Studios, It's a Laugh Productions, Disney Television Animation, Marvel Television Paramount Television, CBS Television Studios Warner Bros. Television, Warner Bros. Animation, Cartoon Network Studios, Warner Horizon Television Sony Pictures Television (US) FremantleMedia (UK) Banijay Entertainment, Zodiak Media (26.2%) Estúdios Globo ABS-CBN Entertainment, Creative Programs, Dreamscape Entertaiment, Star Creatives TV
Theme park resorts Universal Parks & Resorts Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Parque Warner Madrid (Spain JV) KidZania Manila
Broadcast TV network NBC, Cozi TV,
Telemundo, TeleXitos
Fox, MyNetTV, Movies! (50%) ABC, LWN, Super RTL (50% DE) Disney Channel ((RU) DE) CBS, The CW (50%), Decades (JV) The CW (50%) GetTV (US) Buzzr (US)
RTL Group (LU)
Canal+ Group Canal de las Estrellas, Canal 5, Gala TV, FOROtv Rede Globo, Globosat (Brazil), Globo TV International ABS-CBN
Cable channels NBCUniversal Cable FX Networks, Nat Geo channels (73%) Disney Channels Worldwide, Freeform, A&E Networks (50%) Viacom Media Networks, Pop (50%), Showtime Networks Turner Broadcasting System, HBO Sony Pictures Television TV channels Televisa (Mexico) Creative Programs (C1, Lifestyle, Myx, Hero, Jeepney TV, Tag), ABS-CBN Global (The Filipino Channel, Myx TV)
News, business channels/
operations
NBCUniversal News Group, Weather Channel (25%) Fox News, Fox Business ABC News, ABC News Radio CBS News CNN, HLN CNews GloboNews ABS-CBN News Channel
National sports networks/
operations
NBC Sports Group, NHL Network (15.6%) Fox Sports Media Group ESPN Inc. (80%) CBS Sports Network Turner Sports Sony ESPN (India) Canal Sport TDN SporTV ABS-CBN Sports+Action
Music
industry
Fox Music Disney Music Group Comedy Central Records, Nick Records, CBS Records WaterTower Music Sony Music Entertainment (US), Sony/ATV Music Publishing (US), EMI Music Publishing (UK, 38%) BMG Universal Music Group Som Livre Star Music
Publishing Marvel Comics, Disney Publishing Worldwide Simon & Schuster DC Comics Gruner + Jahr, Penguin Random House (US, UK 53%), Bertelsmann Printing Group Editorial Televisa, Intermex Editora Globo ABS-CBN Publishing
Internet Hulu (30%) MTV New Media, CBS Interactive, CNET Hulu (10%) Crackle, PlayStation Network Dailymotion, Gameloft Comercio Más, Televisa Digital Globo.com ABS-CBN Digital Media, ABS-CBNnews.com, I Want TV, Chicken Pork Adobo
iVillage, Fandango (70%) Fox Sports Digital Media Disney Interactive Fandango (30%), Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
2015 Revenues (rank) US$74.510 billion[4]
(NBCUniversal: US$28.462B)
US$28.987 billion US$52.465 billion US$13.886 billion US$28.52 billion US$67.510 billion[5]
(Sony's pictures and music segments: US$13.768B)
US$18.812 billion US$11.811 billion US$4.666 billion R$16 billion (≈ US$5 billion) ₱41.630 billion (US$821.266 million)[6]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Moglen, Eben, Michael Pertschuck, and Scott Sherman, (1999). "Editorials" (Nation, 269: 18). p. 12. ISSN 0027-8378
  2. ^ "A distinction between Business Groups and Conglomerates:The Limited Liability Effect". SSRN Electronic Journal 01/2009; DOI: 10.2139/ssrn.134299. 2009-01-01. Archived from the original on 2016-02-16. Retrieved 2016-02-16. 
  3. ^ "The World’s Biggest Public Companies". Retrieved 18 September 2016. 
  4. ^ Including sales of Comcast's cable communications and networks businesses. Sales of NBCUniversal: US$28.462 billion (2015)
  5. ^ Including sales of Sony's electronics, game and financial services businesses. Sales of the Pictures and Music segments: US$13.768 billion (2015)
  6. ^ Rolando P. Valdueza (3 April 2017). SEC Form 17-A (Report). Philippine Stock Exchange.