CD Sales Plummet In First Half Of 2018, Streaming Accounts For 75% Of Music Sales Revenue In New RIAA Report


The Recording Industry Association of America has released a new mid-year report on the music industry which outlines how the sales of music shaped up in the first half of 2018. In encouraging news, music revenues are up to $4.6 billion already, a considerable jump from 2016’s $3.5 billion during the first half of the year and 2017’s $4.2 billion during its first half.

Unsurprisingly, streaming has a stranglehold on being the dominant choice of media consumption. Revenue from streaming music accounted for 75% of all music sales revenue from the the first half of 2018, while digital downloads totaled 12%, physical media accounted for 10% and synch made up 3%.

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While the increase in revenue is a welcome sign for the music industry, it may not be so warmly received by the artists themselves. The rate at which various streaming services pay royalties for their songs is considerably lower than that of what physical products offered in their heyday and remains a source of contention among many professional musicians.

Speaking of physical products, revenue from CD sales has fallen a drastic 41% during the first half of the year, while vinyl rose with a 13% increase. With big box stores such as Best Buy having abandoned the CD format altogether and chains like Target reworking their business model when it comes to selling CDs, it would seem that revenue from the once prevalent format will continue to hemorrhage.

If you want to delve into the numbers further, you can find the full report over at

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