Jun 11, 2021 in Informative

Australia and Canada

Canada and Australia appear to be two separate worlds based on their respective locations on global map. However, a closer look at media consumption characteristics of these two countries indicates that there might be more similarities between them than differences. At the baseline, two nations herein referenced are considered comparable based on their geographical size where Canada having an area of 9,976,140 sq km and Australia 7,686,850, sq km respectively. Secondly, these nations are characterized by high literacy levels with Canada being at 97% and Australia rated at 99%. Considering these two statistics, it would be prudent to hypothesize that there is no significant difference in media concentration. In testing this hypothesis, the study at hand will look into the concentration of both electronic and non-electronic mass media including concentration of Internet in two nations under consideration.

Starting with the case of Canada, statistics indicate that there are 104 daily newspapers circulating thus 206 papers per every 1,000 people. This indicates that about 20.6% of the population reads a newspaper on a daily basis (Winseck, 2015). The low readership of daily newspapers has remained as such due to the Internet penetration which has revolutionized the way people access information. Today, many daily newspapers are moving online with a low level of print media for newspapers. 

The second media of interest includes the television networks. In Canada there are about 80 television stations in the country with a number of television sets per 1,000 people being at more than 980.5 (Winseck, 2015). Therefore, the implications are that 98.05% of the population owns a television set. Further, the data indicates that for every 1,000 there are 259.4 people who are connected to cable television. This is equivalent to 25.94% of the population being signed up to cable TV (Winseck, 2015). One notable observation is the fact that the subscription to cable television networks remains low and this is due to reducing interest on television viewership; and secondly, the Internet provides for the subscription of online television shows which media consumers can access at any time without any limitations. Thus, such developments within the media industry are important for the analysis at hand.

Focusing on radio stations, Canada has about 594 including both local and international radio stations. All households in Canada have a radio receiver with the concentration standing at 102.24% (Winseck, 2015). One may deduce that Canadian population listens more to the radio as compared to the use of television and newspapers. However, the use of Internet is the largest media considering the fact that people spend more time accessing content online than the time spent by consumers listening to the radio. Again, this is in line with increasing relevance of Internet both in communication and in business across the globe.

The last major media of interest is the Internet access. Such study of is extremely crucial considering the fact that global system of computer networks has overtaken all other media across the word. According to the most recent statistics, 98% of the population aged above 15 years has Internet access (Internet World Stats, 2017). Therefore, this makes Canada one of the countries in the world with the highest internet connectivity. Recently, the government of Canada announced that access to Internet was considered important for survival in Canadian digital world. However, increasing number of Internet users is not merely by chance. Rather, it has been a calculated move by the government to ensure that population is well connected to the global network. In its turn, the government started collaboration with private investors and ensured a wide coverage of cable Internet across Canada. At the same time, broadband connections remain rampant across Canada and more particularly in areas where cable Internet has not yet been underlain. Additionally, the proliferation of smartphones across the nation has ensured continued shifting of the ground towards the use of the Internet as compared to all other media channels (Internet World Stats, 2017).

Looking at the case of Australia, research signifies that there are 48 daily newspapers read by 19.6% of the population on a daily basis. Almost all the newspapers have an online version. According to research data, online readership has grown while the physical readership has remained static. Like in the case of Canada, such concentration on online content has been a major reason why the study of the media is increasingly important. It is also crucial to note how Internet has affected the print media (Ewing, 2016).

Like newspapers and other print mass media the number of households with television has recently reduced in Australia. There are 104 stations with more than 90% of population owning a television set (Ewing, 2016). Besides, high number of television channels is supported by the fact that digital television has revolutionized the television industry and as in the case with all major companies, the Internet had majorly influenced the viewership of television and replaced itgreatly. Further, the country had about 608 radio stations with 131.7% of the population having radio receivers (Ewing, 2016). 

When considering the media trends across the globe, one of the most important statistics is the use and application of the Internet. This is because the Internet access is transforming the manner in which people interact and how business is conducted across the world. The media statistics indicates that 85% of Australian population aged above 15 years has access to Internet. Moreover, the data demonstrate that 86% of all homes in Australia are connected to Internet. Thus, one may conclude that Internet is quickly replacing other mass media platforms to become the main mode of communication.

The data on two countries under review show that there are many similarities between Canada and Australia with regard to media concentration. The similar feature lies in the concentration of daily newspapers that stands at an almost the same level. Secondly, the data confirms that the radio is the most common mass media with a concentration in excess of 100% in both countries. The third major similarity is the replacement of print media and other mass media by Internet. According to the available statistics, Internet access has grown tremendously in both Canada and Australia and this still reflects general environment across the world (PwC Canada, 2016). However, the implications are that in both Canada and Australia one may observe the moving from the plain basic access to Internet to the deepening of digital divide where Internet access has become the major driver of economic wheel. Other than the similarities stated above, the issue of television viewership is increasingly important area of consideration. Research illustrates that the viewership has consistently decreased over the last decade. In numbers, it has fallen to 23 hours a week in 2001 to the current level of less than 15 hours. Consequently, reduction in television viewership is compensated by a rapid increase of Internet usage. For example, it has risen from an average of six minutes a day to more than 12 hours in both Canada and Australia. Such statistics vividly indicates on the direction taken by media consumers in two markets herein considered. The understanding of these trends is of paramount importance since it explains future expectations on where advertising revenues are headed and outlines the media channels that the advertisers should be targeting while considering the placement of advertisements.

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Other than the similarities identified above, there are few differences in mass media concentration in two countries under this study. Firstly, the data indicates a major difference on the subscription to cable television networks. In Canada, about 98% of population is connected to cable television networks, while in Australia only 0.68% is connected to such network (PwC Australia, 2016). The statistics further shows that while penetration and concentration of television sets is high in Australia, the population does not subscribe to cable television networks. This observation can be interpreted as there is an increasingly low interest in television network investment. Therefore, such situation is beneficial for Internet expansion, as interest in cable network subscriptions is reducing tremendously. After all, the viewers can actually get all information and media content through online videos especially now when there are many free sources of media content in Internet. Notably, this explanation does not mean that Canada is not interested in online sources of content. Instead, it only emphasizes the fact that Canada adopted digital sources of information and content faster and earlier than Australia. Admittedly, this is substantiated by observable high rates of Internet access in Canada as compared to Australia (PwC Australia, 2016).

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