Friday, January 15, 2010

Is Soundscan Relevant?

Jeff Price, the founder of TuneCore has a post asking for a new way to quantify music sales. He points to a recent CNN piece The Plan to Save the Music Business. The focus of the piece is on A&M/Octone records, but it also speaks of the amount of new records released last year and those that sold more than 250,000 copies. From Jeff's blog:

"...106,000 new (music) releases in 2008" In 2009, TuneCore released approximately 90,000 releases This means, if their numbers hold true, almost every single new music release in 2009 was distributed via TuneCore.
In addition, the article went on to quote the following Neilsen statistic
"Of the 63 new releases that sold more than 250,000 copies last year, 61 were issued by major music companies." Well then, according to Neilsen, there are now four major "music companies" - Sony, Warner, EMI and, according to Neilsen, TuneCore as all of the following TuneCore artists sold over 250,000 copies....and mind you, this is a not a complete list:

He goes on to list 11 acts and concludes with the following:

And what about the arbitrary concept of looking at a weeks worth of sales, why not a days, or a months, or a years? Things are moving much faster. More music is being recorded and released. Music buyers are moving faster too. Seems to me that the age-old concept of weekly album sales has lost its relevancy. It’s time to get a new system that more accurately reflects the new “IT” – and this time, its important not to consolidate the power of the reporting into the hands of one company.

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