Global music streaming revenues overtake CDs for first time

27/04/2018

Global streaming music revenues have overtaken income from the sale of traditional formats for the first time last year, as the booming popularity the service put an end to the era of the CD.

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According to the IFPI, which represents the global music industry, the music market was worth $17.3bn (£12.4bn) last year, up from $15.7bn the year before.

However, it noted, this is only two-thirds of what the industry made at the peak of the CD era in 1999.

Revenue from music fans paying for services such as Spotify, Apple Music and Amazon Music increased more than 41% to $6.6bn (£4.7bn), accounting for more than 38% of the total global market for recorded music.

By comparison, the sale of physical formats, primarily CDs, fell 5.4% to $5.2bn to account for 30%.

Global recorded music revenues enjoyed a third straight year of growth in 2017, up 8.1% to $17.3bn.

The chief challenge, said the IFPI, is getting fair compensation from websites like YouTube and Facebook, which currently argue they can't be held liable for any videos uploaded by their users which infringe on copyrighted material.

"There is a structural fault in the system," said Frances Moore, the organistion's chief executive. "There's a mismatch between what platforms are making from [music] and what they're returning."

The IFPI is working to introduce legislation in Europe which would require these websites to offer greater compensation for musicians.

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