30 Years of MTV: Impact of Technology and its Multi-Platform Future

  • Yesterday marked the 30th anniversary of the cable network MTV, which debuted at 12:01 a.m. on August 1, 1981.
  • MTV launched modestly, originally accessible to a few thousand subscribers of a New Jersey cable system. Today, it is more of a lifestyle brand than a cable network, and reaches hundreds of millions of households worldwide.
  • The first music video aired on the new network was “Video Killed the Radio Star” by the Buggles. Mashable reports: “The words were true. Almost overnight, the music video became one of the most important promotional and marketing vehicles for the music industry. Artists that best utilized the new format — Michael Jackson, Madonna, Prince and Weird Al Yankovic — became not just stars, but icons. In short, video really did kill the radio star.”
  • Now the question has become, Did YouTube Kill the Music Video Channel? Mashable spoke to Shannon Connolly, VP of digital music strategy at MTV, about the evolution of the network and the impact that digital technologies have had on MTV. Connolly suggests that MTV has grown beyond the role of a music video jukebox to a new core competency involving curation.
  • Connolly added that the future of MTV is about creating multi-platform music experiences: “Everything is multi-platform. Every app, every partnership, we think ‘How is this going to extend from the tablet to the mobile to the connected TV.'”
  • The Mashable post includes a selection of videos that aired on MTV the day of its premiere.