Music Industry, Problems & Sales Charts

for 'Digitally Remastered' - an Economist Article dated 9th June 2011 - click here


Today's Music Industry faces several challenges. Declining sales, distribution methods, technological advance, piracy, downward pressure on costs and the speed with which tends and fashion are changing are only the tip of the iceberg and all seem somehow to be interlinked and interdependent. Almost like a spiral, one problem seems to bring on another.

For an almost grossly-negligent length of time, central institutions and parts of the industry tried to simply shut their eyes, hoping the troubles would be temporary and go away by itself. But their hopes have been dashed and for the last two decades, the speed with which the changes are sweeping through seem only to increase.

First there were records, then there were tapes, mini-discs, CDs and now we have embraced digital downloads and online music streaming. But despite, or probably precisely owing to these technological advances, music sales worldwide are in steep decline, regardless of the occasional reflux of traditional formats, such as vinyl nostalgia.

Music tracks and albums these days are distributed online, no need to go shopping in, what these days have become known as 'bricks-&-mortar' retailers. First there was the death of the independent Record Stores, and now, more or less rapid, even once well-established powerhouses of distribution, such as HMV seems to run out of ideas. The spectacular fall of Tower Records more than a decade ago is just one example of the fatal consequences of ignoring these changes. In a desperate attempt to stay solvent, aforementioned HMV is currently struggling to stay above water, by selling off their book business Waterstones this week.
But the suffering of the distribution arm of the music industry is only a symptom.

A good look at the creative aspect and the production of music worldwide quickly reveals that the problems start far earlier. For more than half a century, independent records labels, the grass roots of creativity and talent spotting, have been snapped up by their giant rivals, often killing off innovation and individuality. It is similar to the IT or Supermarket sector, perhaps also Banking: the big fish swallow the small but do not know how to integrate them properly, risking talent becoming lost in corporate equalisation. Coupled with the interest to maximise profits and shareholder satisfaction, this rarely ends happily: Microsoft stalled for innovation, Tesco killed off the diverse high street stores, banks became too big to allow them to fail - and - in the music industry, changes in trends were silenced. Look at EMI, which became do inflexible that a private equity house bought it out, with major artists deserting them.
I believe, that until this trend is rectified, so-called 'unit sales' will continue to drop, caught in a vicious circle of producing low quality results, which only remain in the charts for the blink of an eye, often forgotten weeks following release. There are, of course, exceptions, but these are numbered.
Today's market share in the Music Industry is to about three quarters in the hands of the 'Big 4': Sony BMG, Universal Music, EMI and Warner Music, with more eating & being eaten already on the horizon. This leaves only a jaw-dropping 28% for independent music labels. After intensely focussing on other industries, perhaps several competition commissions around the world should take a closer look at what's going on and, with the input of the International Federation of Phonographic Industry (IFPI), should press for equally sweeping changes, which should be to the benefit of the industry; making it less dependent on pressures from everywhere else, ensuring it takes technological developments to heart.

The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, IFPI

The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, IFPI, represents the recording industry worldwide with some 1400 record companies in 66 countries and affiliated industry associations in 45 countries. IFPI is head-quartered at No.10 Piccadilly in London and is linked to regional offices in Brussels, Hong Kong and Miami. It's mission is to promote the value of recorded music, safeguard the rights of record producers and expand the commercial uses of recorded music in all markets where its members operate:

Size of the Music Industry by Value (as of 2005)


Market Share of Music by Genre


Argentina


Organisation:
Cámara Argentina de Productores de Fonogramas y Videogramas - CAPIF

Website:
www.capif.org.ar

Charts: here

Certifications:
- Albums: Gold: 20,000, Platinum: 40,000, excl. Digital downloads
- Singles: do not get certified
- Digital Downloads: Gold: 10,000, Platinum: 20,000

Australia


Organisation:
ARIA - Australian Record Industry Association

Website:
www.aria.com.au

Charts: here

Certifications:
- Albums & Singles: Gold: 35,000, Platinum: 70,000 albums
- based on shipments, not sales

Austria


Organisation:
IFPI Austria – Verband der Österreichischen Musikwirtschaft

Website:
www.ifpi.at

Charts: here

Certifications:
- Albums: Gold: 10,000, Platinum: 20,000
- Singles: Gold: 15,000, Platinum: 30,000

Belgium


Organisation:
BEA - Belgian Entertainment Association

Website:
www.belgianentertainment.be

Charts:
Flanders: Ultrapop 50
Wallonia: Ultrapop 40

Certifications:
- Albums & Singles:
- Domestic (French and Dutch language, incl. Jazz and Classical): Gold: 10,000, Platinum: 20,000
- International (non-French, non-Dutch): Gold: 15,000, Platinum: 30,000

Brazil


Organisation:
ABPD - Associação Brasileira dos Produtores de Discos

Website:
www.abpd.org.br

Charts: here

Certifications:
- Domestic Albums: Gold: 40,000, Platinum: 80,000, Diamond: 300,000
- International Albums: Gold: 20,000, Platinum: 40,000, Diamond: 160,000
- Digital Downloads: Gold: 50,000, Platinum: 100,000, Diamond: 500,000
- based on sales

Bulgaria


Organisation:
BAMP - Българска асоциация на музикалните продуценти

Website:
www.bamp-bg.org

Charts: here

Certifications:
- Albums only: Gold: 15,000, Platinum: 30,000

Canada


Organisation:
CRIA - Canadian Recording Industry Association

Website:
www.cria.ca

Charts: here

Certifications:
- Albums: Gold: 40,000, Platinum: 80,000, Diamond: 800,000
- Singles: Gold: 5,000, Platinum: 10,000, Diamond: 100,000
- based on shipments

Chile


Organisation:
IFPI - International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, London
No local Association. The local IFPI hub was shut down in March 2008 in a police raid and investigation linked to fraud and illegal distribution of music files

Website:
www.ifpi.org - was www.ifpichile.cl before

Charts: here

Certifications:
- Albums only: Gold: 5,000, Platinum: 10,000

China


Organisation:
SARFT - 国家广播电影电视总局 (State Administration of Radio, Film, and Television), a state controlled body, which centrally controls (and censors) the country's media

Website:
Chinese only: www.sarft.gov.cn
English with Google Translate: www.sarft.gov.cn

Charts: here

Awards: (no awards given, just for international statistics)
Albums only: Gold: 20,000, Platinum: 40,000

Colombia


Organisation:
ASINCOL - Convenio Antipiratería para Colombia, not strictly an association of the music industry, but a national body against piracy

Website:
www.convenioantipirateria.org.co

Charts: here

Certifications:
- Albums only: Gold: 10,000, Platinum: 20,000

Czech Republic


Organisation:
IFPI - International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, London
No local Association

Website:
www.ifpi.org

Charts: here

Certifications:
- Albums: Gold: 6,000, Platinum: 12,000
- Singles: Gold: 1,000, Platinum: 2,000

Denmark


Organisation:
IFPI - International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, London
with local hub IFPI Denmark

Website:
www.ifpi.dk

Charts: here

Certifications:
- Albums: Gold: 10,000, Platinum: 20,000
- Singles: Gold: 15,000, Platinum: 30,000
- based on shipments

Ecuador


Organisation:
IFPI - International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, London
with local hub IFPI Ecuador

Website:
central: www.ifpi.org
local: n/a

Charts: n/a

Awards:
Albums only: Gold: 3,000, Platinum: 6,000



Europe





Organiation:
Billboard, a New York-head quartered Music Publication, with office in London (although Billboard announced in Feb 2011 to close their London Office)

Website:
www.billboard.com/#/charts/european-hot-100

Charts: Eurochart Hot 100 Singles

Awards: n/a



Finland


Organisation:

Website:

Charts:
Finland's Official List
Finnish Singles Chart
YLE Top40

Awards:



France


Organisation:
SNEP - Syndicat National de l'Édition Phonographique

Website:
www.disqueenfrance.com/fr

Charts: SNEP

Certifications:
- Albums: Gold: 50,000, Platinum: 100,000, Diamond: 500,000
- Singles: Gold: 150,000, Platinum: 250,000, Diamond: 400,000
- based on sales

Germany


Organisation:
Bundesverband Musikindustrie

Website:
www.musikindustrie.de

Charts: Media Control AG

Certifications:
- Albums: Gold: 100,000, Platinum: 200,000
- Singles: Gold: 150,000, Platinum: 300,000
- based on shipments

Greece


Organisation:

Website:

Charts:
Greek IFPI Singles and Albums Charts

Awards:



Gulf States - Middle East - Gulf Coorporation Council


Organisation:

Website:

Charts:

Awards:



Hong Kong


Organisation:

Website:

Charts:
Hong Kong IFPI Music Chart

Awards:



Hungary


Organisation:

Website:

Charts:
Mahasz

Awards:



Ireland


Organisation:

Website:

Charts:
IRMA
Irish Albums Chart
Irish Singles Chart
Irish Downloads Chart

Awards:



Italy


Organisation:

Website:

Charts:
Federation of the Italian Music Industry
Musica & Dischi

Awards:



Japan


Organisation:

Website:

Charts:
Oricon
Music Labo
Music Research
Planet chart
Japan Hot 100
SoundScan

Awards:



Mexico


Organisation:

Website:

Charts:
AMPROFON

Awards:



Netherlands


Organisation:

Website:

Charts:
Dutch Top 40
MegaCharts
Mega Single Top 100
Mega Top 50

Awards:



New Zealand


Organisation:

Website:

Charts:
Recording Industry Association of New Zealand

Awards:



Norway


Organisation:

Website:

Charts:
Norsktoppen
VG-lista

Awards:



Poland


Organisation:

Website:

Charts:
Polish Airplay Chart - Top 5
Polish Airplay Chart - New Singles
Polish Airplay Chart - Greatest Jumps
Polish Videos Chart
Polish Dance Top 50
OLiS - Album Top 50 (weekly
ZPAV - Album Top 100 (monthly)

Awards:



Portugal


Organisation:

Website:

Charts:
Top Oficial da AFP

Awards:



Romania


Organisation:

Website:

Charts:
Romanian Top 100

Awards:



Russia


Organisation:

Website:

Charts:
Russian Music Charts
Russia Top 25. Albums
Russia Top 10. Digital Tracks
Airplay Detection Tophit 100

Awards:



Slovenia


Organisation:

Website:

Charts: Slo Top 40

Awards:



South Korea


Organisation:

Website:

Charts: Gaon Chart

Awards:



Spain


Organisation:
PROMUSICAE - Productores de Musica de España

Website:
www.promusicae.es

Charts: PME

Awards:



Sweden


Organisation:

Website:

Charts
Svensktoppen
Sverigetopplistan
Tracks
DigiListan

Awards:



Switzerland


Organisation:

Website:

Charts:
Swiss Music Charts
Swiss Albums Top 100
Swiss Airplay Top 30
Swiss Singles Top 100
Swiss Compilations Top 25

Awards:



Turkey


Organisation:
Mü-YAP (IFPI Türkiye Milli Grubu)

Website:
www.mu-yap.org

Charts: Billboard Türkiye

Certifications:
- Albums only: Gold: 100,000, Platinum: 200,000, Diamond: 300,000

United Kingdom


Organisation:
BPI - British Phonographic Industry

Website:
www.bpi.co.uk

Charts: Official Music Chart Company

Certifications:
- Albums: Silver: 60,000, Gold: 100,000, Platinum: 300,000
- Singles: Silver: 200,000, Gold: 400,000, Platinum: 600,000
- based on shipments

United States


Organisation:
RIAA - Recording Industry Association of America Inc.

Website:
www.riaa.com

Charts: Billboard

Certifications:
- Albums & Singles: Gold: 500,000, Platinum: 1,000,000, (Diamond: 10,000,000 - Albums only)

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