Why Music Sucks: Manufacturing Stars for Fun and Profit

December 8, 2006

Our good friends over at the Institute for Strategy and Business Economics at the University of Zurich put out a paper entitled Explaining the Star Shift in the Media – Why ‘Manufactured’ Celebrities are More Lucrative than ‘Self-Made’ Superstars“. Far from the normal academic drivel pumped out of the ivy halls at university this little gem of knowledge, kinda reads like a geeks who dunit, as it explores the many reasons media companies prefer prefab stars to “self-made” superstars. Yes it does kinda miss the obvious point that all celebrity is ultimately prefab and that there are no real self-made stars and havent been for about 30 years. The paper takes 25 pages to explain what boils down to, its easier for media companies to exploit capture value when they create pre-fab stars (think Kelly Clarkson, Ruben Studdard) then when they have to contend with a self-made star. For the details go here.