Corporate Amerika

It’s always been my experience that when some business or organization gets bigger, they rarely get better.

Better is a very subjective word.

The business may indeed get better, better profit structure, more employes, better survivability in times of economic stress. My better has to do with customer service and product quality.

I had my first Big Mac when I was 15. For the sake of argument let’s say that was 40 years ago (it’s a little more, actually) in the late 60’s. I thought it was just about the best thing I ever ate. It came in a huge Styrofoam container so it wasn’t squashed, tasted all nice and fresh and cost less than a dollar. In fairness I have not had a McDonald’s meal in years. But the last time I did have a Big Mac it looked like this:

when in my memory it looked like this:

I have to assume that as McDonald’s got bigger, the quality control slipped a bit.

I don’t mean to single out Ronald and his buddies.

Take the music industry. The golden age saw sales of $40 billion (with a B) back in the 90’s when the “Big 6” — EMI, CBS, BMG, PolyGram, WEA and MCA — dominated the industry-now that there are, what? two record companies that matter, sales are in the toilet. You can bark all you want about how digital killed the music industry but even taking into account digital sales:

total sales have tanked. The industry has not produced a genuine “Star” in years. In doubt? Look at the highest selling acts:

See any Taylor Swift there?

Without the big stars music will continue to be less and less an issue. The big corporate labels that are left do not want to waste time in artist development. It doesn’t fit the corporate vision of how to increase sales to go out to nightclubs and listen to up and coming acts.

Radio…don’t get me started about what consolidation and corporate management have done to radio. It’s a shame.

The presidential election? Just another corporate beauty contest. Do you think a politician who suggests real “Change” and then tries to actually do it would get very far?

How’s that working out for you?

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About James Rising

A recovering radio addict wrestles with the written word.
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