Explor ation of impetus to develop information resource industry: information consumption theory

The information consumption growth objectives were put forward in the Several Opinions on Promoting Information Consumption and Expanding Domestic Demand (G.F. [2013] No.32) issued by the State Council in August 2013. That is, projections showed that by 2015, information consumption would have exceeded RMB 3.2 trillion with an annual average growth by more than 20%, driving the new output of related industries of more than RMB 1.2 trillion; the Internet-based new information consumption would have exceeded RMB 2.4 trillion with an annual average growth of more than 30%. Consumption based on such information platforms as e-commerce and cloud computing would grow fast, with the turnover of e-commerce exceeding RMB 1.8 trillion and the turnover of e-retailing reaching RMB 3 trillion.1 Once released, the document drew much attention fr om the industry and the academic community, rendering information consumption a new hot topic.

Notably, “information consumption” is a market behavior different from but linked with another concept, “information resource exploitation,” which refers to the process of gathering, processing, storing, spreading, serving, exchanging, sharing, and applying information resources based on social demands.2 The concept also has broader connotations and denotations than “information resources,” including not only non-market exploitation of information resources (such as inner exploitation) but also market exploitation of information resources (such as information consumption). To define that, the Chinese Government once published several documents, such as the Remarks of President Xi at the First Meeting of the Central Cyberspace Affairs Leading Group, China’s Twelfth Five-year Plan for Development of Strategic Emerging Industries, China's Strategies for Informatization Development from 2006 to 2020, Informatization Development Plan issued by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, and Several Opinions of the General Office of the CPC Central Committee and the General Office of the State Council on Strengthening Information Resource Exploitation (Z.B.F. [2004] No.34).

Foreign literature covers few systematical findings of information consumption, and these limited findings are mainly about: (1) a discussion of such general issues as features and the mechanism3 of information consumption, and construction of a model4 on information consumption behavior, (2) analysis of consumption features of specific consumption groups, such as consumption features of students5 or in rural areas,6 (3) mention of information consumption in the discussion of other related issues such as personal information management aims at information production instead of information consumption.7

We hold that priority must be given to two important issues among the issues to be addressed in the study on the information consrunption theory in terms of current socioeconomic development needs in China, namely, featur es of information consrunption as an emerging market behavior, and special needs proposed by those features for the setting of related policies. We will briefly explain the preliminary research results in those two aspects. With the explanation model of features of information consrunption as a basic clue, an exploration of market featrues, structural features, evolution features, and policy need features of information consumption will be made in the related contents, and investigation data of the Chinese network video industry serves as a basic argument support. The investigation data comes from the related research reports of the research group, as well as Reportfor Research on Chinese Netizens 'Application of Network Videos for 2013, Report for the 33 th Statistics of China's Internet Development Status,1 Annual Industrial Monitoring Reportfor Chinese Online Videos from 2013 to 2014 (iResearch Consulting Group), Analysis Report for Network Video and Smart TV Industries for 2013 (iResearch Consulting Group), etc.

Explanation model

To make an in-depth explanation of basic features of information consumption, we, on the basis of field investigation, expert consultation, case analysis, literature study, and full inner discussion, have come up with an explanation model for

Explanation model for features of information consumption

Figure 2.3 Explanation model for features of information consumption

features of information consumption after theoretical generalization (as shown in Figure 2.3). It can be seen from Figure 2.3 that for studying features of information consumption, we need to analyze and define the differences between information consumption and traditional consumption based on consumption economics and information economics theories, etc., giving priority to exploring the information consumption pattern, consumption structure, and the evolution law, policy demand, and inner links among them for the purpose of perfecting the information consumption theory and providing a basis for construction and development of the national related policy systems.

The following sections contain the research result produced on the basis of the explanation model for features of information consumption. The basic value of the result is to explore the mechanism for sound development of the information resource industry' from the perspective of consumption and to define the policy demand and management demand of the information resource industry.

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