Somewhere during my time in Japan and amidst my readings into the Japanese content industry, I noticed I began to start calling what I had previously called the “content industry” and “content industries”, the “contents industry” and even “contents industries”.
While this flows from the Japanese pronunciation (kontentsu), Japanese publications also refer to the industry and the products as ‘contents’.
After leaving Japan, I managed to drop this ‘s’ and began to find those ‘s’s glaring out at me from the writings of colleagues in Japan.
Yet, there could actually be some value in that extra ‘s’. Despite its grammatical awkwardness, the addition of an ‘s’ does at least distinguish the industry from the adjective ‘content’, which promises some value when introducing the concept to people for the first time. (‘So you are saying that the industry is very content?’ ‘No, I am saying that it is the content industry!’)