Since Napster was launched in 1999, the music industry has struggled to adapt to the proliferation of digital music, especially peer-to-peer file sharing and piracy. This year, though, the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry reports that there has actually been an increase in revenue for the first time in 13 years.
According to the IFPI's 2013 Digital Music Report, global recorded music revenues grew by .3 percent in 2012, the best result since 1998. Additionally, digital revenues are estimated at $5.6 billion, an increase of 9 percent on the previous year, and accounting for 34 percent of total industry revenue. The IFPI's report calls the increase "a sign that the improvement in market conditions seen in 2011 has been sustained."
Furthermore, according to a press release from consumer market research agency NPD Group, there has been a serious decline in illegal music file sharing in 2012. The study shows a 17 percent drop in the number of consumers using P2P services to download music over the previous year. At the height of illegal file sharing in 2005, 33 million people were reported as using P2P services, in contrast to the 21 million currently reported.
The combination of increased revenue and fewer illegal downloads is likely linked to the increase of both free and paid subscription based services, in addition to increased digital sales. Regardless of the reason, it's good news for the recording industry for the first time in a long time. The industry may have finally secured a solid footing in the digital realm.
Via: Hollywood Reporter