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Music Present

Page history last edited by Jessica Ostley 10 years ago


Music Group 

Music Past 

Music Present 

Music Future  










In the music industry today, as shown in the graph above, CD sales (blue line) are continuing to drop while single sales (red line) are growing. More than three quarters of music sales in 2012 were digital singles. Itunes is responsible for 63% of all digital music sales. In the past, in order to make it big in the music industry you had to be signed with a major record label, but now, independent labels are becoming more popular because of the technology advancements including YouTube. For example, which allows artists to upload videos and use it as a platform to build popularity without having to pay someone to advertise their music for them. Now artists are seeing the benefits of a independent label because that way they don't have to change their music style to fit into what the major label thinks will sell best. Single sales have been rising because of the cheap cost of usually 99 cents per song. Most people only like a few songs of an album therefore single sales allows them to only purchase the songs they like rather than the entire album. Soon after the development of Itunes came the iPod, which allowed people to listen to music anywhere they were. This is another reason why CD sales have dropped.









Universal, Sony, Warner and EMI were the major record labels, controlling 90% of the music industry. In 2012 Universals purchase of EMI was approved, therefore merging the two labels together. Because of this, they control over 40% of the music market, making them the gatekeeper for all innovation. There have been many concerns revolving around the merge of the two major labels, mainly coming from independent artists or supporters of them. The biggest concern is that EMI/UMG would have more power in controlling prices and licenses which would impact digital music retailers like iTunes and Spotify in a negative wayThe FTC made a condition when the purchase happened stating that digital music providers could negotiate more freely with customers without fearing universals power. The merge could prevent music platforms and indie musicians could see reduced compensations because they do not have any organization that represents them.  Sony eventually gets involved too in this deal, saying they will take over the publishing aspect of the newly merged label. This is separate from Sony's existing Sony music publishing. 


The "Big Four"

Sony Music Entertainment (publisher) 

Universal Music Group (recording)

Warner (both publishing and recording)

EMI (both publishing and recording)






In 2013 Nielsen SoundScans numbers show that streaming was up by 32% and digital downloading was down 6%. Streaming services such as Pandora, iHeartRadio, YouTube and Spotify are free apps or sites that you can listen to music on. With the growth of smartphones, streaming music is more accessible and convenient to people. There can be pros and cons when it comes to streaming music, bands like Mumford and sons see it as a platform, where people can listen to your music to see if they like it without having to buy it. If the person ends up liking the music from the artist, they will eventually end up purchasing the album or the single, merchandise and concert tickets to makeup for whatever income was lost by streaming the music. Other bands such as Radiohead and Black Keys think streaming music is a bad thing, and they have actually pulled their music from being played on streaming sites like Spotify.


Streaming music programs are also called the "Open Music Model" which allows artists to upload their albums for consumers to listen to while being paid by the ads that are popping up during the stream. Most, streaming providers also offer ads free verions at a monthly rate as low as 5.99 per month or as high as 14.99 per month. This is more or less the business model of today.



The graph above shows the increase in streaming (rise of digital) and the decrease in the sales of physical music (hard copies i.e. CDS)



The graph above shows that in 2013, 53% of people surveyed said they listen to online radio and compared to one year ago 67% of those people said they are listening to even more internet radio.










Ever since the rise of digital sales, there has been people who think they shouldn't have to pay for musical content. Piracy seems like one of the most harmless crimes a person could commit, but according to the RIAA they say otherwise. As shown above, of every internet user over the age of 12, 38% of these users have downloaded music illegally.



"The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) is the trade organization that supports and promotes the creative and financial vitality of the major music companies. Its members are the music labels that comprise the most vibrant record industry in the world. RIAA members create, manufacture and/or distribute approximately 85% of all legitimate recorded music produced and sold in the United States." 

     "According to a credible analysis by the IPI (Institute for Policy Innovation) it concludes that global music piracy causes $12.5 billion in economic losses annually, 71,060 U.S. jobs lost, a loss of $2.7 billion in workers' earnings, and a loss of $422 million in tax revenues, $291 million in personal income tax and $131 million in lost corporate income and production taxes. No doubt that piracy has had a severe, negative impact on the music industry." 








As you can see in the graph above, it shows the total mentions (how many times something has been tweeted about) and then the red dot shows how many people that mentioned it actually bought what they were tweeting about. When people see others tweet about something, then they will be interested in what all the talk is about, therefore they will Google it and possibly buy whatever is being talked about on social media. Social media is also good for musicians who are advertising their music. ollowing celebrities on twitter, you will get updates by them every time they release a new song, music video or album. They usually will include a link to where you can buy it on iTunes, making it even easier to buy what they are advertising.


(This graph shows that music is the 3rd most talked about topic on Twitter)



In a way, consumers have become the new gatekeepers of the music industry.

From the start of Myspace, onto Face Book, Twitter, and YouTube, all materials you and I use on a regular basis, consumers are promoting their favorite artist by buzzin' about them on these popular social networking sites. Whether we, the consumers, intend to "advertise," by gossiping on these sites it creates a trend, and every musician/artists wants to be trending. 





Downloading music is growing because of the new technology such as iPod's and smart phones, which allow people to listen to music anywhere they are, at any time. The increase in downloading music can lead to less profit for musicians because the money from downloads must be split among band mates and the record label. As for streaming, where consumers pay a monthly fee and then have access to the music. Even so, musicians get less revenue from streaming than digital downloads. Artists earn only about one cent per stream. Most of the artists income comes from selling CD's and touring. Musicians will need to become more creative in order to increase their profits since digital downloading is now more popular than purchasing physical copies of albums. An example of what some artists have been doing is signing CD's at their concerts so that people are more likely to want to buy them. 



 Past                          Present                    Future  




Since the Introduction the ITunes Music Store on April 28. "A Decade of ITunes Singles Killed the Music Industry." CNNMoney.      Cable News Network, 25 Apr. 2013. Web. 16 Feb. 2014.

"Nielsen SoundScan Mid-Year Report: Digital Album and Single Sales Slow." Billboard. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 Feb. 2014.

"Online Radio Reach & Consumption, September 2013 [CHART]." EStrategy Marketing Trends RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Feb. 2014.

"Digital Music Services Go Mainstream." Statista Infographics. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Feb. 2014.

Byrne, David. "David Byrne: 'The Internet Will Suck All Creative Content out of the World'"The Guardian. Guardian News and      Media, 12 Oct. 2013. Web. 14 Feb. 2014.

"Pandora Effect: Digital Music Sales tumble." New York Post. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Feb. 2014.

Owsinski, Bobby. "The Music Industry Moves Kicking and Screaming Into A Streaming World." Forbes. Forbes Magazine, 10 Jan.      2014. Web. 17 Feb. 2014. 

"Streaming Boom Can't Offset Decline in Physical Music Sales." Statista Infographics. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Feb. 2014.

"Best Music Streaming Services Roundup." Maximum PC. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Feb. 2014.

"Brendan Smyth - Internet Effect on Music." YouTube. YouTube, 10 Oct. 2010. Web. 28 Feb. 2014.

Griggs, Brandon. "How ITunes Changed Music, and the World." CNN. Cable News Network, 01 Jan. 1970. Web. 06 Mar. 2014.

"ITunes at 10: How Apple's Music Store Has Transformed the Industry." NY Daily News. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Mar. 2014.

"Blog." Brandwatch. N.p., n.d. Web. 07 Mar. 2014.

"How UMG-EMI Merger Affects Future of Indie Music and You." Way Too Indie RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Mar. 2014.

"Future of Music Coalition." Why the EMI-UMG Merger Is Bad for Artists and Fans. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Mar. 2014.

"The Merger of Universal and EMI." Music Business Journal Berklee College of Music RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Mar. 2014.

The Wall Street Journal. Dow Jones & Company, n.d. Web. 31 Mar. 2014.

(Added by Mattie Sutherland)

Arango, Tim. "Digital Sales Exceed CDs At Atlantic." The New York Times. The New York Times, 25 Nov. 2008. Web. 03 Apr. 2014.

 "2000 Industry World Sales". IFPI annual report. 04 September 2001. Apr. 2014.

 Knopper, Steve. Appetite for Self-Destruction: the Spectacular Crash of the Record Industry in the Digital Age. Free Press. October 2009. Apr. 2014.

(Added by Jessica Ostley) 



Comments (7)

Jessica Ostley said

at 8:17 pm on Mar 11, 2014

Hey Brandon I see you're editing right now, take a look at the future page - I see you're also highlighting info in yellow. Try to bold that info and enlarge the font size so the class can see it better :)

Brandon plain said

at 9:34 pm on Mar 11, 2014

the weirdest thing happened to me! i saved my work to make sure i wouldn't lose it and now every time i try to edit the present page it just goes to a blank space where i can't do anything...? Mattie agreed to help me out but has this happened to anyone else or just me? i tried it on two separate computers and neither worked..

Brandon plain said

at 9:35 pm on Mar 11, 2014

i can literally edit any other page except the one I'm assigned lol

Jessica Ostley said

at 12:19 am on Mar 12, 2014

Haven't had that happen to me... restart your computer? That's weird. I can help with formatting.

Jessica Ostley said

at 1:53 am on Mar 12, 2014

Actually that totally did happen right after I commented that. When I restarted my computer it worked again, but things were funny like when I tried highlighting a section to change the font size it wouldn't scroll. I had to do it word by word which made it frustrating.

Lashauna Franklin said

at 9:47 am on Mar 28, 2014

I fixes thw Present page

Lashauna Franklin said

at 9:49 am on Mar 28, 2014

oops, I mean I fixed the present page.

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