IntroductionThis summary page of industry sector NAICS 51, Information, contains the NAICS definition for the industry sector as a whole, as well as the latest data available and links to the survey questionnaire forms that are used to collect the information. Please click on the links below or scroll down the page to go to your topic of interest.
NAICS Industry Sector Description
NAICS Industry Descriptions
NAICS Industry Sector Description
The Information sector comprises establishments engaged in the following processes: (a) producing and distributing information and cultural products, (b) providing the means to transmit or distribute these products as well as data or communications, and (c) processing data.
The main components of this sector are the publishing industries, including software publishing, and both traditional publishing and publishing exclusively on the Internet; the motion picture and sound recording industries; the broadcasting industries, including traditional broadcasting and those broadcasting exclusively over the Internet; the telecommunications industries; the industries known as Internet service providers and web search portals, data processing industries, and the information services industries.
The expressions ''information age'' and ''global information economy'' are used with considerable frequency today. The general idea of an ''information economy'' includes both the notion of industries primarily producing, processing, and distributing information, as well as the idea that every industry is using available information and information technology to reorganize and make themselves more productive.
For the purpose of developing NAICS, it is the transformation of information into a commodity that is produced and distributed by a number of growing industries that is at issue. The Information sector groups three types of establishments: (1) those engaged in producing and distributing information and cultural products; (2) those that provide the means to transmit or distribute these products as well as data or communications; and (3) those that process data. Cultural products are those that directly express attitudes, opinions, ideas, values, and artistic creativity; provide entertainment; or offer information and analysis concerning the past and present. Included in this definition are popular, mass-produced, products as well as cultural products that normally have a more limited audience, such as poetry books, literary magazines, or classical records.
The unique characteristics of information and cultural products, and of the processes involved in their production and distribution, distinguish the Information sector from the goods-producing and service-producing sectors. Some of these characteristics are:
1. Unlike traditional goods, an ''information or cultural product,'' such as a newspaper on-line or television program, does not necessarily have tangible qualities, nor is it necessarily associated with a particular form. A movie can be shown at a movie theater, on a television broadcast, through video-on-demand or rented at a local video store. A sound recording can be aired on radio, embedded in multimedia products, or sold at a record store.
2. Unlike traditional services, the delivery of these products does not require direct contact between the supplier and the consumer.
3. The value of these products to the consumer lies in their informational, educational, cultural, or entertainment content, not in the format in which they are distributed. Most of these products are protected from unlawful reproduction by copyright laws.
4. The intangible property aspect of information and cultural products makes the processes involved in their production and distribution very different from goods and services. Only those possessing the rights to these works are authorized to reproduce, alter, improve, and distribute them. Acquiring and using these rights often involves significant costs. In addition, technology is revolutionizing the distribution of these products. It is possible to distribute them in a physical form, via broadcast, or on-line.
5. Distributors of information and cultural products can easily add value to the products they distribute. For instance, broadcasters add advertising not contained in the original product. This capacity means that unlike traditional distributors, they derive revenue not from sale of the distributed product to the final consumer, but from those who pay for the privilege of adding information to the original product. Similarly, a directory and mailing list publisher can acquire the rights to thousands of previously published newspaper and periodical articles and add new value by providing search and software and organizing the information in a way that facilitates research and retrieval. These products often command a much higher price than the original information.
The distribution modes for information commodities may either eliminate the necessity for traditional manufacture, or reverse the conventional order of manufacture-distribute: A newspaper distributed on-line, for example, can be printed locally or by the final consumer. Similarly, it is anticipated that packaged software, which today is mainly bought through the traditional retail channels, will soon be available mainly on-line. The NAICS Information sector is designed to make such economic changes transparent as they occur, or to facilitate designing surveys that will monitor the new phenomena and provide data to analyze the changes.
Many of the industries in the NAICS Information sector are engaged in producing products protected by copyright law, or in distributing them (other than distribution by traditional wholesale and retail methods). Examples are traditional publishing industries, software and directory and mailing list publishing industries, and film and sound industries. Broadcasting and telecommunications industries and information providers and processors are also included in the Information sector, because their technologies are so closely linked to other industries in the Information sector.Back to Top
NAICS Industry Descriptions
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Latest DataThe latest data available is for the year 2006. All data tables are made available in the Portable Document Format (PDF).
Note: Letters PDF or symbol indicate a document is in the Portable Document Format (PDF). To view the file you will need the Adobe® Acrobat® Reader which is available for free from the Adobe web site.
NAICS Industry DataTables are in both PDF and XLS format
Estimated Revenue for Employer Firms
Estimated Coefficients of VariationTables are in both PDF and XLS format
51 Appendix .xls
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Survey FormsBelow is a listing of the survey questionnaire forms that are used to collect data for the Service Annual Survey. We are currently collecting information for the 2004 survey year. The questionnaire forms are in PDF format.
|Form #||Title||Current Form||Archived Forms|
|SA-51111||NAICS 511110 - Newspaper Publishers||2005||Not Available|
|SA-51112||NAICS 511120 - Periodical Publishers||2005||Not Available|
|SA-51113||NAICS 511130 - Book Publishers||2005||Not Available|
|SA-51114||NAICS 511140 - Directory and Mailing List Publishers||2005||Not Available|
|SA-511191||NAICS 511191 - Greeting Card Publishers||2005||Not Available|
|SA-511199||NAICS 511199 - All Other Publishers||2005||Not Available|
|SA-5112||NAICS 511210 - Software Publishers||2005|
|SA-51211||NAICS 512110 - Motion Picture and Video Production||2005|
|SA-51212||NAICS 512120 - Motion Picture and Video Distribution||2005|
|SA-51213||NAICS 512131 - Motion Picture Theaters (except Drive-In)||2005|
|SA-51213||NAICS 512132 - Drive-In Motion Picture Theaters||2005|
|SA-51219||NAICS 512191 - Teleproduction and Other Postproduction Services||2005|
- Other Motion Picture and Video Industries
|SA-51221||NAICS 512210 - Record Production||2005|
|SA-51222||NAICS 512220 - Integrated Record Production/Distribution||2005|
|SA-51223||NAICS 512230 - Music Publishers||2005|
- Sound Recording Studios
|SA-51229||NAICS 512290 - Other Sound Recording Industries||2005|
|SA-51511||NAICS 515111 - Radio Networks||2005||Not Available|
|SA-51511||NAICS 515112 - Radio Stations||2005||Not Available|
|SA-51512||NAICS 515120 - Television Broadcasting||2005||Not Available|
|SA-5152||NAICS 515210 - Cable and Other Subscription Programming||2005||Not Available|
|SA-516||NAICS 516110 - Internet Publishing and Broadcasting||2005||Not Available|
|SA-5171||NAICS 517110 - Wired Telecommunications||2005||Not Available|
|SA-517211||NAICS 517211 - Paging||2005||Not Available|
|SA-517212||NAICS 517212 - Cellular and Other WIreless Telecommunications||2005||Not Available|
|SA-5173||NAICS 517310 - Telecommunications Resellers||2005||Not Available|
|SA-5174||NAICS 517410 - Satellite Telecommunications||2005||Not Available|
|SA-5175||NAICS 517510 - Cable and Other Program Distribution||2005||Not Available|
|SA-5179||NAICS 517910 - Other Telecommunications||2005||Not Available|
|SA-518111||NAICS 518111 - Internet Service Providers||2005||Not Available|
|SA-518112||NAICS 518112 - Web Search Portals||2005||Not Available|
- Data Processing, Hosting, and Related Services
|SA-51911||NAICS 519110 - News Syndicates||2005||Not Available|
|SA-51912||NAICS 519120 - Libraries and Archives||2005||Not Available|
|SA-51919||NAICS 519190 - All Other Information Services||2005||Not Available|
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