Research firm Luminate presented some of its latest data on Canada at the recent Canadian Music Week conference in Toronto.
It noted that streaming growth in Canada is accelerating, with total on-demand song streams up 18.3% year-on-year in the first 19 weeks of 2023.
That was 50.6bn streams, although when video streams are stripped out, the total was 45.7bn of on-demand audio streams – up 15.9% year-on-year. That means video streams grew by 48.5% year-on-year, which is a datapoint to chew over.
Something else being chewed over by Canada’s music industry is the new Bill C-11 legislation (aka the Online Streaming Act) with its requirement for streaming services to fund and promote Canadian content – music included.
Former Spotify chief economist Will Page has criticised it before, and he returned to the topic in a column for The Globe and Mail last week following the conference.
“There is a disconnect between how Canadian artists are performing on global streaming platforms and how well the intervention of Bill C-11 will succeed in its aims,” wrote Page, noting that Justin Bieber’s famous appearance on a version of ‘Despacito’ in 2017 “would not have qualified as Canadian content” under the new rules.
“So if a Canadian artist is to succeed through cross-border collaboration, her work shouldn’t be considered to not meet the conditions of Canadian content…”