Comparing Digital Media Industries in South Korea and Australia: The Case of Netflix Take-Up

Tim Dwyer, Yongwoon Shim, Heejin Lee, Jonathon Hutchinson


The broader purpose of our research is to compare digital media business and policy in Australia and South Korea. Our assumption is that comparisons of this kind offer heuristic insights into the underlying dynamics of contemporary digital media industry change. We take the view that media industry transition can usefully analyze digital media transformations through a political-economic lens, together with more specific cultural frames for policy and regulation. We examine the industry and policy implications of over-the-top (OTT) media services in overseas markets by comparing Netflix in Australia and Korea. We also argue that contested policy agendas for broadband infrastructures, including emergent 5G mobile broadband, are critical to how OTT services such as Netflix build audiences. We argue that seminal media theorists Raymond Williams and Brian Winston can assist in comparatively analyzing technical innovation and take-up of products, services, and applications in the media sector. In terms of our methodology, we combine critical media studies approaches to industry change through data derived from industry interviews, trade articles, reports, and relevant “gray” and scholarly literature.


OTT video, SVOD, IPTV, social shaping of technology, regulation, policy, local content, Netflix

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