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More than 80% of music now listened to via streaming platforms

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An interim report by the Competition and Markets Authority in the UK (CMA) into the impact of streaming services on the music industry has revealed that approximately 80% of music is now consumed via music streaming platforms such as Spotify or YouTube.

The report, which was published yesterday, highlighted that:

  • Three large music labels – Sony, Universal and Warner – share a large proportion of the total number of streams in the UK.
  • There has been an increase in the number of individuals releasing music from around 200,000 in 2014 to 400,000 in 2020.
  • Streaming platforms encourage new people to join their customer base rather than focusing on persuading customers of other platforms to change service providers.
  • An artist whose music is streamed 1 million times in a month can earn about £12,000 annually.

The full report will be published early next year and the CMA is now consulting on its proposal not to make a Market Investigation Reference (MIR).

Commenting on the initial findings, Sarah Cardell who is the interim CEO of the Competition and Markets Authority said: “Streaming has transformed music. Technology is opening the door to many new artists to find an audience and music lovers can access a vast array of music, old and new, for prices that have fallen in real terms.”

Cardell added: “But for many artists it is just as tough as it has always been, and many feel that they are not getting a fair deal. Our initial analysis shows that the outcomes for artists are not driven by issues to do with competition, such as sustained excessive profits.”

The Musicians Union general secretary, Naomi Pohl, said in a statement described it as “disappointing” that what they describe as “competition issues” in the market “will not be explored fully by a CMA investigation”.

Pohl concluded by saying: “The CMA’s release today highlights what it sees as positive impacts of music streaming – but we feel they have failed to recognise the very serious problems posed to creators.”

Featured Image Credit: Pexels Photos

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