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Pandora/Rdio media round-up: Best reading on both companies and the streaming economy

Monday’s news that Rdio had declared bankruptcy, with Pandora purchasing the company’s remaining assets and making big future plans, turned the tech, business, and music media on its head. The major consolidation in the streaming music space sparked lots of features and think pieces. Here, we’ve collected some of the more useful and insightful writing on the subject. Continue Reading

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Chicago getting sued for amusement tax on streaming entertainment services

The city of Chicago ruffled some feathers earlier this year with the announcement of an amusement tax levied against online entertainment services. The tax would cover video and audio platforms including Netflix, Amazon Prime, Spotify, Hulu, and Xbox Live. However, the city has hit a snag in getting that tax off the ground. The Liberty Justice Center has filed a lawsuit in Illinois circuit court to challenge several aspects of the proposed tax. Continue Reading

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Report shows growth in radio and streaming, declines in physical and digital sales

Pricewaterhouse Coopers released a report about the global entertainment and media markets. The research covered both the radio and music market segments. The report found that radio had total revenue of $20.67 billion in 2014. On the other hand, the music industry was valued at $15.06 in 2014 and total recorded music revenue was $6.01 billion. Continue Reading

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Spanish music association launches unified chart to include streaming counts

One of Spain’s music charts announced the launch of a new Top 100 Songs list that will incorporate streaming numbers as well as downloads and physical sales. PROMUSICAE (Productores de Música de España) will use the new joint chart to replace its weekly Top 50 Songs and Top 100 Streaming charts. Several charts organizations worldwide have made shifts to include data about streaming. Continue Reading

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Nielsen year-end report: Streaming continues to shine as album sales fall

Nielsen SoundScan released its 2014 year-end figures for both music sales and streaming in the U.S. Streaming totaled 164 billion songs, up 54% from the 106 billion songs streamed the previous year. According to the Wall Street Journal (paywall), the overall music consumption didn’t change extensively between 2013 and 2014 based on an equivalence where 1,500 song streams or 10 individual song downloads count as an album sale. Continue Reading

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Daniel Ek responds to Taylor Swift with comprehensive defense of Spotify

The decision by Taylor Swift and her label, Big Machine, to remove her entire back catalog from Spotify sparked a wave of debates and arguments about the pros and cons of the streaming music economy. Swift herself said in an interview with Yahoo that the reason for her action was her skepticism about streaming platforms. Spotify CEO Daniel Ek wrote a lengthy blog post in an effort to clear up misunderstandings about the streaming ecosystem that have sparked many of the most vocal diabtribes. Continue Reading

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Bono and other music leaders talk streaming’s positive future at Web Summit

Several leaders from the music industry spoke last week at the Web Summit in Dublin about the role of streaming for musicians and listeners. One panel included several managers discussing the current environment for music. Jonathan Dickins, who represents popular singer Adele, spoke favorably about the role of streaming. Another panel from the Summit focused on Music and Movies in the 21st Century. At that discussion, U2’s Bono also spoke out in support of a streaming music economy. Continue Reading