Multimedia has been a way for many news, advertising and media outlets to convey their purpose in a manner that transcends conventional reporting, by allowing the transference of information through more than one medium. Since the invention of portals like Facebook, multimedia has been given a platform in which it has been able to thrive like never before, as multimedia productions such as videos are mass produced by media organisations and are used as one of the main sources to attract viewers attention whilst scrolling, with this video feature being accredited to Facebook’s high share value (Rayson, 2016). Whether it would be photo galleries accompanying text or an audio video slide-show, multimedia has helped created a new way in which we are able to consume information, and in doing so, has changed the culture of how we consume our information.
A survey conducted by Zenith shows that media consumption from traditional desktops is in decline, whilst mobile consumption has increased, with 71% of internet consumption being mobile (Performics, 2016). So how could this affect the way we are consuming media? “mobile users must incur a higher interaction cost in order to access the same amount of information” (Budiu, 2015). well due to the small screen of a mobile and the higher “interaction cost” that comes with obtaining information from it, media outlets have developed new methods of information consumption as an easier alternative to the more drawn out methods like reading articles, trying to bridge the gap that the interaction cost mobile viewing incurs. Now This’ a portal based news outlet was created for mobile viewing and as so, is an organisation that conveys all of its news through a video slideshow, filled with images, clips, audio and text appearing on-screen, informing the viewer about a news situation; and with over eight million facebook followers, and with 64% being between the ages of 18-34, it shows that this way of broadcasting information is quite popular.
Although we still do consume information through a single medium, such as reading online articles, statistics show that this medium is one of the worst at drawing and maintaining a viewers attention. slate.com conducted research that shows most people who click their articles only read 50%, 5% of people do not scroll through the article at all and the others scroll to the bottom to see the content on video or photo form (Manjoo, 2016).
but despite these poor numbers from article based websites, internet consumption is actually growing “Since 2010, time spent using the internet has nearly doubled from an average of 59.6 to 109.5 minutes a day. “(Radcliffe, 2015) .
So if media consumption is growing, but most of this consumption is being consumed on a mobile device, then perhaps the reason we are seeing a shift from the more traditional, single medium methods of information consumption is due to the “interaction cost” in which it takes to consume information conveyed in a single medium, rather than a multimedia production which can give you the same information, without having to be interacted with at such a high level.