There was a time not so long ago that Digital Entertainment was easily defined. You had three benchmarks that fit the definition; your digital television, your CD collection and your black and white two bit gaming system.
Times have seriously changed and the concept of defining what exactly it is has stretched our mental acuity to its very limits. For hundreds of years the concept of Digital Entertainment meant interlocking your fingers together and watching them wiggle (give it a minute) and then suddenly and almost without warning our lives changed thanks to a technological tsunami.
Technology has advanced at a torrid pace for the past couple of decades and shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon. As that new tech permeated our lives it changed how we are entertained, what entertains us, when we can be entertained and how that entertainment is delivered to us. It also blurred the lines of definable digital entertainment. Now the most popular video games on the market are only a small portion of what exists in the digital entertainment marketplace.
About the only thing that is definitive about defining Digital Entertainment is that it is extremely hard to define. Even a diligent search of the internet world fails to provide an adequate definition so here is mine:
“Digital Entertainment -the creation and distribution of original works made with the aid of a digital medium that are meant to amuse, entertain, inform and profit from your target audience”
In order to break that down even further into easily digestible chunks let’s look at the various means of entertainment delivery.
Let’s start by saying that today’s most popular video games are gender neutral. No longer is it the stereotypical action games for boys approach taken by game designers.
Famous video games of the past relied on gore before story. That approach has given way to more of a complete experience for the gamer thus appealing to a broader and more diverse target audience.
What used to be a solitary endeavor has now become a social event with online gaming, message boards and leader boards. Before you just beat the game, now you can try to beat the world.
Game developers have also realized that even the most seasoned gamer needs a distraction now and then and have developed ways to give the player what he or she wants without even turning of the system.
Side missions, free roaming capabilities and Easter egg hunting all allow the gamer to mentally pause the game story-line while still being entertained.
Delivery of video games has changed as well. While consoles continue to improve consumers have historically had little choice when it came to obtaining a new game and the most popular PC games were not always available on your console.
Now gamers can browse seemingly limitless lists of new titles from the comfort of their living room with the advent of online stores and third party independent game design companies.
At one time the consumer had to choose from one of the big three video game companies when looking for a new game but now there are hundreds to choose from on the internet and more enter the marketplace everyday.
Yes it’s true even the ancient television is a mainstay in the world of digital entertainment but it is rapidly changing the way it operates. In the past, and still to this day to a certain extent, cable television operated on the assumption it was doing us the consumer a favor by supplying us entertainment and charged us whatever they wanted for the right to watch the entertainment they chose for us.
Then with the rise of online video streaming technology they realized that the consumer could just say no. Sometimes the way to have big business pay attention is to hit them where it hurts, their bottom line.
So instead of shying away from the competition they bought it and introduced the concept of smart TVs that allow users to access online streaming digital video content, web pages and internet based retail sites. A smart move by the cable companies to be sure but how smart the TVs are remains to be seen. Until my television set can make me a sandwich while I am watching it I am not completely sold.
Ten years ago entertainment was scripted. Every form of entertainment delivery whether a play, television program, song or written prose told you what to think and what to expect in your entertainment viewing. Now with the invention of social media we write the script ourselves. We in a way entertain ourselves in the way we want to.
Every person on the planet now has the capability to make us laugh, make us cry or to make us feel. Decades ago your father falling of a ladder made you laugh; now you can watch literally thousands of people fall of a ladder thanks to digital video technology and sharing sites. More falls equals more laughter and laughter is good. Even the dudes in the videos themselves laugh at other peoples fails so don’t feel bad it is human nature.
The rise of social media has become a cornerstone in our modern society and serves many different uses all of which can be viewed as a form of digital entertainment. If you find reading user reviews of different restaurants entertaining then you have been digitally entertained.
If you find it fascinating that your friend had eggs for breakfast you have been very easily digitally entertained in my opinion but entertained none the less. For some, looking at pictures of the more famous and attractive among us was what they used to call entertainment but they have replaced that with a swath of selfies which they are all to happy to share. This new form of entertainment would have taken weeks in the past and a whole lot of stamps.
The total dominance of social media in our daily lives is also changing the way we market to consumers. According to Forbes the total spend on digital/video advertising has increased by over 40% in the last few years alone.
So the desktop may quickly be the behemoth of the computing world but the concept of having your own personal portal into the inter-world is here to stay. As far as I know my new smart TV doesn’t come with a suite of word processing software presently.
Computers are smaller, more powerful and more portable than ever before. They offer the digital entertainment seeker added security and browsing capabilities that are yet to be matched on tablets, TVs or phones and continue to give users the storage space needed for your collection of photos and videos and excellent blog content. They will be a cornerstone of digital delivery for the foreseeable future.
In the millennial marketplace, more, now, faster and easier is the modis operandi and your smart phone provides you with digital content anywhere, anytime and anyplace. For a fee of course.
The tiny mega computer allows the gamer or social media guru an unlimited opportunity to stay entertained. And with each passing year they are becoming more and more the norm. Pull out an old flip phone at a party and you will see what I mean. Trust me I have done it.
I am sure that there are more methods of delivery for today’s digital content and that many more are to come in the future but at least we know have a general understanding of digital entertainment and the methods we access it.
The technology developed for digital entertainment has also had numerous side effects. One such being that it is easier than ever to know work from home or the beach thanks to file sharing advancements driven by people’s need to entertain themselves and others via peer to peer sharing and cloud technology.
Industry itself has changed as we see business change from traditional advertising in newspapers etc to more advanced and localized methods such as targeted digital video and viral blog content.
There has been some movement for people to hold onto the past as in the resurgence of vinyl records, but Digital entertainment is not going anywhere and has even introduced a new lexicon into our society with the coining of words such as infotainment and edutainment. It may not be easy to define but it is easy to find. Just look around…anywhere.
Thank you for reading! Please share your comments/views with us here.
DISCLAIMER: THE VIEWS AND OPINIONS EXPRESSED IN THIS ARTICLE ARE SOLELY THOSE OF THE ORIGINAL AUTHORS (THIRD PARTY) AND OTHER CONTRIBUTORS. THESE VIEWS AND OPINIONS DO NOT NECESSARILY REPRESENT THOSE OF SALJACK ENTERPRISES, IT’S STAFF, AND/OR ANY/ALL CONTRIBUTORS TO THIS SITE. PLEASE CONTACT SALJACK ENTERPRISES FOR PERMISSION TO REPUBLISH THIS ARTICLE OR ANY PARTS HEREIN.