Art for art's sake or selling up?

Faulkner, Simon; Vis, Farida and Williams, Karel (2008). Art for art's sake or selling up? European Journal of Communication, 23(3) pp. 295–317.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/0267323108092537

Abstract

This article explores the discrepancy between the vision of the broadcast producer as a creative in pursuit of `art for art's sake' and current trends within the broadcasting sector, where large `super-indies' dominate and smaller producer-owners become rich by selling up. At a theoretical level, the article explores how representations of the producer as artist frame the historic and current policy debates, so that `liberating the creative' has become the key policy object. At an empirical level the article shows how, in response to regulatory changes, a slow-growing market and the influence of external financial backers, the sector has become dominated by acquisitive super-indies, who buy small and medium-sized firms from willing sellers who treat their firm as a real option to be cashed in the future, because selling up can make them a millionaire.

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