What influence did MTv in the 1980's have on television?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I think that MTV impacted television in a couple of distinct ways.  When The Buggles' video entitled "Video Killed the Radio Star" premiered on the network, it was a moment in time because it transformed how television would be viewed and how music would be perceived.  MTV enabled television to become a carrying device for music.  It was the advent of cable television that became an "in thing" for so many adolescents.  This was primarily because of MTV.  The use of the network as a carrying device for music transformed how television could be used.  Sponsors, corporations, and consumers were entranced by the possibility of what could be.  Music was not the domain of radio or the record store.  Now, the use of music videos became something massively consumed by the public.  Television became a way in which people could listen to and absorb music. Just as the progression from phonograph to cassette transformed the industry, the movement from radio to television via MTV helped to impact the necessity for a television, and more specifically, for cable television.  Television was now seen as an even more vital medium for consumerism, as both the purchase of cable television and the revenue generated by videos on television became economic realities that ended up facilitating a transition to music on television as standard.  This same progression is now seen as web based outlets like YouTube are assuming the same importance as music on television once did in the 1980s.

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