NYT Magazine has published an interesting essay questioning the pronounced decline of the creative class – writers, musicians, authors, etc over the past two decades with the rise of the internet and other platforms that have flattened the way people consume art and media. Differing from what we hear that this labour group is fighting for its livelihood, Johnson finds evidence to suggest otherwise. Instead these occupations are actually experiencing a growth spurt, some more than others. This comes down to a few reasons – more avenues to produce your content to which creates more opportunities as people continue to consume the same level of content as they did in 1999. But returns, he points out, are rising disproportionately to those that produce excellent work and less so for the others but they do get a piece of the pie.
An interesting essay throughout, here is one nugget worth highlighting:
Of the big four creative industries (music, television, movies and books), music turns out to be the business that has seen the most conspicuous turmoil: None of the other three has seen anywhere near the cratering of recorded-music revenues. The O.E.S. numbers show that writers and actors each saw their income increase by about 50 percent, well above the national average.