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ERA gets physical with IFPI; IFPI hits back


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Last week we covered the publication of the IFPI’s Music Consumer Insight Report (based on AudienceNet data) which looked at, among other things, how much time consumers spend listening to music and how they listen to it. There were also new numbers on why IFPI argues digital copyright among consumers is still a concern. Of course, digital featured heavily in the report. But the Entertainment Retailers’ Association in the UK felt that this was the problem at its heart and has responded by calling the report a “blinkered view of the world” for not mentioning physical music formats once. ERA CEO Kim Bayley wrote to IFPI saying, “No one is more enthusiastic about the rise of streaming than ERA. Indeed it is our members including Spotify, Amazon, Deezer and Google who are substantially responsible for the recent upturn in the recorded music industry’s fortunes. She added, “[T]he key to a healthy music ecosystem is a diverse channel landscape, embracing physical as well as digital formats.”

In a statement shared with Music Ally, an IFPI spokesperson responded to the criticisms. “Our Music Consumer Insight Report focuses largely on emerging trends and activities related to music consumption around the world,” they said. “Whilst we don’t have a specific section on the consumption of music through physical formats, the sections looking at time spent listening to music, the activities carried out whilst listening to music and the parts throughout looking at the most popular genres all include physical formats as a listening method. We fully recognise the importance of physical formats to the global music market.”

In its global figures for 2017, the IFPI reported that, in a recorded music market worth $17.3bn, streaming had the biggest share ($6.6bn). Even so, physical made up just a third of the market ($5.2bn) and was the second-largest driver of recorded music revenue around the world last year.

Eamonn Forde

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