“In an era without the constraints of physical shelf space and other bottlenecks of distribution, narrowly-targeted goods and services can be as economically attractive as mainstream fare.”
– Chris Anderson
The theory of the long tail effect refers to the abundance of information we have accumulated now that everyone has access and the ability to create content and participate on all available platforms.
Due to this attention economy has risen dramatically as consumers are looking for more than what businesses are offering. As the physical shelf space moves into a virtual shelf space, consumers are pondering the question why would you ever pay for anything you could get for free?
Therefore industries such as, the publishing and music industries have to find alternative ways to add value to their products which consumers can otherwise find for free online.
However, the long tail effect does hold positives, whereby allowing users to generate their own content and do anything they please while online.