It makes shopping more efficient. From an article in the Nov. 29 issue of The Wall Street called The Internet Allows Consumers to Trim Wasteful Purchases. It was by By WILLIAM M. BULKELEY. My San Antonio College students might be able to read this through our library's website.
Here is an exerpt:
"Photo companies made customers pay for 24 shots in a roll of film to get a handful of good pictures. Music publishers made customers buy full CDs to get a single hit song. Encyclopedia publishers made parents spend thousands of dollars on multiple volumes when all they wanted was to help their kid do one homework paper. The business models required customers to pay for detritus to get the good stuff."
So now we take digital pictures and can save only the ones we want. We don't pay for ones we don't want. We can download songs and only pay for the ones we want.