IFPI digital music report 2013: engine of a digital world

Digital communications Information technology

The global recorded music industry is on a path to recovery, fuelled by licensed digital music services and rapid expansion into new markets internationally. Recorded music is also helping drive a broader digital economy, according this report.

Global recorded music industry revenues rose by an estimated 0.3 per cent to US$16.5 billion in 2012, the first year of industry growth since 1999. Digital revenues saw accelerating growth for the second year running, up 9 per cent, with most major digital revenue streams - downloads, subscription and advertising-supported - on the rise.

The digital music business is globalising fast, as smartphones and new licensed services span new and emerging markets. In January 2011, the major international download and subscription services were present in 23 markets. Today, they are in more than 100.

Licensed music services are demonstrably meeting consumers' needs. New consumer research published today by Ipsos MediaCT, covering nine markets in four continents, shows that 62 per cent of internet users have used a licensed music service in the last six months. (A summary of the Ipsos MediaCT research is provided in annex)

Canadian artist Carly Rae Jepsen topped the 2012 global singles chart with Call Me Maybe. British singer-songwriter Adele achieved phenomenal success with 21, the first album to top the global albums chart for two consecutive years since IFPI began reporting global best sellers in 2001.

Despite the optimism, key barriers to further growth remain - the biggest being unfair competition from unlicensed music services. Governments have a key role to play in addressing this problem. The key priority remains to secure effective cooperation from intermediaries including advertisers, ISPs and search engines, who have a major influence on levels of copyright infringement.

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