Streaming services have taken over the entertainment world, presenting a unique set of pros and cons. “Black Widow” ended its opening weekend at the box office, grossing $ 158 million. Sixty million of them were from Disney +, which shows that we are truly in the age of digital media that thrives first and foremost.
Physical media are slowly starting to be neglected. Owning physical copies of movies and books will always be a reliable way to consume media, and physical media will outlast digital media in the long run.
Physical sales of movie records have fallen every year for the past nine years, according to Digital bits. As streaming continues to dominate, physical media is gaining more weight. Successful streaming services like Disney + and Netflix have only grown over time. Disney + has over 100 million subscribers and Netflix over 200 million, according to News week. Part of this is because people are so excited to watch these shows and movies on the day they release. The instant access aspect of streaming could take people away from physical media altogether.
There is something therapeutic about collecting physical copies of media. Streaming services have a variety of titles available to you, but when collecting books and Blu-ray discs, you need to be selective and organize the collection you want. Buying films online and collecting special editions of certain films is a rewarding experience.
The constant growth of streaming services makes it difficult to support them. Movies and shows spin in and out of streaming services every month, and with millions of titles, you don’t have time to explore and really find what you love most. I found myself halfway through a series on a streaming service, before I knew it she was gone. Physical media doesn’t rush you to binge on your favorite shows or cram a movie into your schedule before it’s replaced.
There are also too many streaming services. Each major entertainment company seems to be building its own streaming service, forcing audiences to choose which ones they like the most. It used to be simple when Netflix had virtually every show and movie ever made, but now there are too many moving parts and streaming is becoming overwhelming for many.
The most important factor that takes digital media a step below physical media is the Internet connection. Not everyone has access to the internet and for those who do, if the internet is down, or even if the connection is just average, video playback loses quality. All doors that were once opened by streaming services are now closed due to unstable Wi-Fi.
Steaming services are likely to continue to thrive and entertain millions of people, but it’s important to consider the positive aspects of physical media consumption.
Streaming is convenient, but that doesn’t mean it’s the best way to consume entertainment. Whether you collect as a hobby or are fed up with the streaming services that are mushrooming by the day, physical media is the best way.
Featured Illustration By Miranda Thomas