Posts Tagged ‘recorded music


The recorded music market in the US, 2000-2013

The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) recently published the sales figures (shipment figures) for the recorded music market in the US for 2013. Accordingly, digital sales increased by 7.6 percent to US$ 4.36bn from 2012 to 2013. Nevertheless, overall sales (digital and physical) slightly decreased by 0.3 percent from US$ 7.016bn to US$ 6.996bn in 2013. Thus, the sales decline of 12.3 percent (US$ -325m) in the physical product (CD, vinyl, DVD, SACD) could not be compensated by the growth of the digital music market. All in all, digital music sales accounted for 64 percent of the overall recorded music sales in 2013.

The strong increase of digital music sales is fueled by the booming music streaming and subscription segment, which grew 39 percent in 2013, generating US$1.4bn in revenue. However, single track download sales shrank by 3.3 percent (US$ -54.6m) in the same period. Digital album sales have slightly increased by 2.4 percent or US$ 28.7m from 2012 to 2013. These figures seem to indicate a cannibalizing effect of music streaming on download sales, even if we consider recent price cuts by digital music distributors.

The following analysis does not only highlight the digitization process of the recorded music market in the US in past thirteen years, but also the tremendous change of the digital music market segment.

Continue reading ‘The recorded music market in the US, 2000-2013’


how bad is music file sharing? – part 2

In his working paper entitled “On-line Piracy and Recorded Music Sales”, David Blackburn used a dataset combining weekly album sales data from Nielsen SoundScan with data of file sharing activity on the 5 largest sharing networks in the U.S. (Kazaa, Grokster, eDonkey, iMesh, and Overnet) provided by BigChampagne over more than 60 weeks between September 2002 and November 2003. The results showed that “(…) file sharing is reducing the sales of ex ante popular artists while redistributing some of these lost sales to smaller, less well known artists” (Blackburn 2004: 41). However, “(…) the aggregate effect of file sharing on sales is quite strongly negative” (Blackburn 2004: 6). “[T]he estimates suggest that a 30% across-the-board reduction in the number of files shared would have resulted in an additional 66 million albums sold in 2003, an increase of approximately $330 million in profits” (Blackburn 2004: 6). Continue reading ‘how bad is music file sharing? – part 2’

April 2017
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