Music sales: Digital = Physical for the first time!

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You know Music Row Girl loves to make you laugh, but sometimes…

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…I have to get serious and talk about sales as it pertains to music!

So the IFPI (International Federation of the Phonographic Industry) just released their Global Digital Music Report which revealed that global digital music sales equaled global physical music sales for the very first time!

I’m pretty surprised that digital music sales have never surpassed physical music sales! I was under the impression that they have been, but apparently when we look at music sales on a global scale, we have to count the CD collectors like I spoke about before in Japan who still buy massive amounts of physical product! See that lovely piece here: [musicrowgirl.com/why-is-japan-the-lead-buyer-of-cds]

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I think everyone should have a physical copy of Taylor Swift’s 1989, so you have something to grab in case of a fire! HAHA

So the report states that 2014 is the very first year that digital sales equalled physical sales which is quite impressive if you ask me! Digital revenues grew 6.9% since 2013 to $6.9 billion USD which is equal to the same as physical CD & vinyl sales!

As for streaming, the number of paid subscribers has jumped up to 41 million, representing a 46% increase. Streaming subscribers brought $1.6 billion in revenue which is quite substantial, if you ask me! 😀

The cool thing about this is that digital sales still happen, for one, which is largely because of iTunes and how great it is to have instant/non-Wi-Fi access to your favorite artists, bands, songs, and albums AND the fact that streaming revenue is growing means that record labels cannot ignore them any longer and need to negotiate higher rates per stream.

Ignorance isn’t quite what I think is happening because everybody including me knows that there are millions of users on SoundCloud and Spotify, but the fact that the rates are extremely low and what I find to be unnegotiated…it seems to me that it’s high time that the rates were raised to equal or to come significantly close to the mechanical rate (9.1 cents per song) in order to compensate songwriters and producers properly!

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The rate per stream is not really publicized that I know of, but from what I remember it’s something like .000000001. Seriously! That’s why when the public information of income from Pharrell’s “Happy” and John Legend’s “All Of Me” was released a few months prior, everyone’s mouth started to drop. I don’t remember precisely but I know that each song made less than $5,000 in streaming income and they were played MILLIONS of times!!

Regardless, the only constant in life is change and that couldn’t be more true of the music industry too. There are many things in flux and flow, but perhaps that’s what makes it exciting, challenging, and rewarding to be a part of.

Come back tomorrow for some laughs HAHA & thanks IFPI for your report!

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