Some of you have been seeing and passing around the link for this video, which is called “Why doesn’t MTV play videos anymore?” It’s pretty funny:
Super funny, right? But…in case any of you were thinking of taking it too seriously (I see you on Twitter)…in all fairness, MTV didn’t really switch to reality TV format ONLY because people started file sharing. A major factor was actually that playing videos didn’t allow them to get consistent ratings, since people kept switching stations. Kids might watch a couple videos they liked, but if a video came on that they didn’t, they would switch the channel. And then they might not come back, because most likely they changed the channel to a 30-minute program that they’d watch in entirety. So MTV changed to a format that allowed them to get ratings (and make more money, plus entertain people with “shows about vapid people”).
More importantly, the generation that grew up on MTV’s shows like Headbangers Ball and Yo! MTV Raps–aren’t really the generation who started file sharing in the early 2000s. That was the generation after them; the 1975-1985 generation were all out of college and had joined the workforce by then, and everyone knows it was the high school and college kids who were the first big wave that popularized file sharing. So those folks were born about 1985 or later.
In other words, the people who grew up looking to MTV for new cool music sometimes look back in sadness at the cancellation of those shows because the generation after them started changing the game. Which happens. And those sad nostalgic people do need to grow up, go find those videos on YouTube, and make a playlist or something.