introduction to communication studies

Topic 6. Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney Plus, Spotify and Steam are just some of the platforms available for accessing and consuming entertainment. With only a few clicks, and a small monthly fee, we can get our favourite video games, movies, music, and TV delivered to any device. And yet, a contradiction exists with this delivery model. On one hand, the Internet has made it very easy for companies like Netflix to thrive. But, it has also made it really easy for users to get their content for free. Even though it is illegal to download and stream content for free, it is an easy and effective option for people who don’t want to spend money on entertainment. So, if there are easy ways to watch movies and listen to music for free, WHY are more and more people willing to PAY money for media? In you research paper, address this contradiction: it’s easier than ever to download files illegally, and yet more and more people are now paying for media. Why are consumers willing to pay? What have these companies done to encourage their customers to forgo free or pirated content? Does this have an effect on more traditional delivery mechanisms like movie theaters, print media or traditional television? What, if anything, is the impact on the consumer? You do NOT need to address all of these questions. But you MUST try to settle the contradiction between freely available material and our willingness to pay.

Final Research Paper: This semester, you will write an academic research paper. Your paper will present a well thought out argument based on academic research and evidence, using a range of academic sources. Your Final Research Paper must be 2000-2500 words (excluding bibliography and title page), typed, double-spaced. You must use a minimum of 3 academic sources (from your Annotated Bibliography) in your work. This is a research paper; you are expected to research your topic and use academic sources to inform your argument. This is a formal academic paper, everything from spelling and grammar, to argument structure and research count. Your paper must also be fully cited and include a bibliography (separate from the Annotated Bibliography you submit ahead of time). I will provide a list of paper topics. You must choose one of these topics to write on, OR you may come up with your own topic, in which case you MUST email me a proposal (1 page in length) AND receive my permission to write on this topic. Your proposal must include: a description of your topic (what is your paper about), an explanation of how it connects to our course material, and a brief discussion of what you think you might find in the research on this topic. If you write on a topic that is not assigned, and has not been approved ahead of time, you will receive a grade of zero. Your proposal MUST be received by June 15th, at 5:00pm PST. I will NOT accept proposals after this date for any reason. NOTE: For many of you, this is the longest paper you will have ever written. You need to START EARLY. If you try to research and write this in the final days before it is due, you will fail the assignment. Ask lots of questions. Take this assignment very seriously! Your paper is due on Moodle during Week 11 (emailed submissions will not be accepted)