Posts Tagged ‘download


Music Majors in the Streaming Economy: Warner Music Group

In its last annual report Warner Music Group (WMG) exhibited a total revenue of US $3.58bn – the highest since the recorded music company was sold by Time-Warner to the Investor Group in 2003. Although overall costs also increased to US $3.15bn (WMG 2017: 38-39), the operating income is remarkably high with US $222m (WMG 2017: 40) especially compared to the disastrous results of the early 2000 years with annual losses of about 1 billion US$. The main driver of the revenue growth is the music streaming boom. In the recorded music segment streaming revenue increased by US $434m to US 1.34bn in the fiscal year ending on September 30, 2017. The music publishing segment contributed a further increase of US $58m of streaming revenue (WMG 2017: 36). Thus, WMG earned almost US $500m more with music streaming in 2017 compared to 2016. The further analysis highlights how the music major’s business model has shifted to the music streaming economy.

Continue reading ‘Music Majors in the Streaming Economy: Warner Music Group’


Book Review: “Download!” by Phil Hardy

Phil Hardy, Download-cover“Download! How the Internet Transformed the Record Business” by music industry journalist Phil Hardy is a detailed analysis how the majors record companies lost control of the value added chain in the music industry in the digital revolution. He tells the story about self-confident and maybe arrogant music business executives, who had profited from the CD revolution in the 1990s, but were outmanoeuvred by industry outsiders who set up a totally new added value network for recorded music. The once highly profitable record business that attracted investors from other industries in the 1980s and 1990s turned into a laboratory of digitalization with declining record sales, job losses and divestments of pressing plants and distribution networks in the 2000s. “Download!” is, therefore, an important contribution to understand the impact of Internet and new media on the transformation of the recorded music industry.

Continue reading ‘Book Review: “Download!” by Phil Hardy’


How Bad Is Music File Sharing? – Part 23

The economist Jordi McKenzie of the University of Sydney published the first study on the impact of music file sharing on music sales (physical and digital) in Australia. His article in the Australian Economic Papers entitled “Illegal Music Downloading and Its Impact on Legitimate Sales: Australian Empirical Evidence” is based on a working paper from August 2009 and was published in December 2009.

With a similar methodological approach to Oberholzer-Gee and Strumpf (2007) he came to the conclusion that “(…) the evidence suggests no discernible impact of dowloading activity on legitimate sales“. More details on his approach and his findings are given here: Continue reading ‘How Bad Is Music File Sharing? – Part 23’


how bad is music file sharing? – part 1

The Dutch study is based on a representative survey of 1,500 Dutch internet users, capturing their behavior and motives in downloading music, films and games, but it also investigated their purchasing behavior related to music, DVDs and games. Although the authors found out that music producers and publishers suffered revenue losses due to file sharing of about EUR 100 million a year, the welfare gains totalled around annually EUR 200 million in the Netherlands. Continue reading ‘how bad is music file sharing? – part 1’


The Radiohead Revolution?

The British alternative rock band Radiohead caused a sensation when they announced on their website on October 1, 2007 that the new album In Rainbows was completed and would be released in 10 days for free. Fans were instructed to obtain a registration code in order to download the new album in MP3-format. Music consumers were left to determine the price on their own – ranging from US$ 0.00 to US $ 99.99. The response was overwhelming, and within a few weeks more than 1.2 million downloads were counted. According to the Internet market research firm comScore, 38% of the fans paid an average of US $ 6 per album, which resulted in US$ 2.4 million in revenue. Is this business model really as revolutionary as it appears at first sight? Continue reading ‘The Radiohead Revolution?’


The CD is dead! Long live the music download?

The economic crisis exacerbates the recession in the music industry. Recorded music sales have been in sharply decline for years. Digital music offerings on the Internet and via mobile phone cannot compensate for the losses. One reason: The wrong licensing policies of the record labels.

The music industry cannot escape the general economic and financial crisis. In 2008 a dramatic slump in sales of recorded music for nearly all markets was reported. But the economic crisis only reinforces a downturn in the market for recorded music that begun already in the late 1990s. Thus, in the largest music markets the CD unit sales dropped in the period from 2000 to 2008 between 35% (United Kingdom) and 59% (USA). This recession, however, is a symptom of a paradigm shift from music delivered in form of a physical product to music as a service delivered in form of online and mobile music offerings. Continue reading ‘The CD is dead! Long live the music download?’

June 2023



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