1981–1991: Music videos go mainstream1. What was the first music video featured on MTV?
The first music video featured on MTV was called "Video Killed the Radio Star" by the British group called the Buggles.
2. What were the two key innovations in the development of music videos at this time?
The first key innovation in the development of music videos at this time is the advancement of inexpensive and easy-to-use video recording and editing equipment. The second key innovation is the development of visual effects which are achieve by methods such as video compositing. High color quality video tape recorders and portable video cameras were introduced in the New Wave era that made creating promotional pop videos quick and cheap.
3. When did the video for Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” debut? What was important about this video?
The video for Michael Jackson's "Thriller" debuted on December 2, 1983. The video was the most successful and influential music video at that time. Thriller set a new standard for music video production, having cost about $500,000 U.S. to film.
1992–2004: Rise of the directors
1. What new feature did MTV implement?
MTV began to list the directors along in the artist and song credits starting in December of 1992. This shows that music videos have been more of a film makers' base for their ongoing career. Some directors such as Michel Gondry and Spike Jonze started their directing career around this time.
2. What was changing about the music videos?
Music videos were becoming more expensive as the years went by. Two of the most expensive ones were directed by Mark Romanek who directed Michael Jackson's "Scream" and Madonna's "Bedtime Story." Scream cost $7 million while Bedtime Story cost $5 million. Also during this time, music videos were being shown around the world on international channels, all launched by MTV. In 1996, M2 was launched to show more older music videos.
2 Other Interesting Facts
In 1991, Michael Jackson's "Black or White" music video dance segment was cut because the video showed him wrongly touching his body.
From 1999-2001, a peer-to-peer file sharing service called Napster was launched. Users were able to share video files, such as music videos, with each other.