Published on February 22nd, 2012 | by Steven Hodson


Web music streaming companies could face the same type of 28-Day delay

When it comes to getting your movies only companies like Netflix and Hulu have to deal with what is termed the 28-day window that the movie companies demand from the streaming companies if they want to be able to stream any movies. This means that Netflix and Hulu have to wait 28 days before they can even think about streaming a ‘licensed’ movie. Some movie companies, like Warner Bros. have been considering making that an even longer window and now music labels are considering the same thing.

Rumors are beginning to circulate that the music industry worried about the so-called cannibalization of their sales from services like Spotify and Rhapsody are looking into implementing the same sort of 28-day delay between when the music hits the shelves or iTunes, and when streaming services can make the music available to paying consumers.

Coldplay, one of the bands that held their latest album from the steaming sites for several months, and their manager Dave Holmes believe that the subscription services hurt their sales.

Jon Irwin, CEO of Rhapsody, on the other hand doesn’t agree with this assessment and also suggests that bands that go this delay route could end up suffering from fan backlash, which would have a much bigger impact on sales. He also suggests that there is absolutely no evidence that services like his and Spotify’s do anything to cannibalize sales of the CDs or MP3s.

While Irwin believes artist adoption of streaming services is inevitable, some believe it could be the policy of “windowing” that is inevitable too. Music analyst Mark Mulligan anticipates that “windowing” will help artists release albums across various digital services. “That is a really easy way to mitigate a lot of the risk of streaming,” Mulligan told the Financial Times. “The relationship between streaming and the download could be the same as radio and the CD. Radio cannibalizes sales as well…but artists get many multiples higher on Spotify per play than they get on the radio.”

via Fast Company

The thing is, as pointed out by Irwin, that these streaming services have no say in the matter as it is the music labels and artists who making the decisions.

OF course we, the consumer – you know, the ones with the money we want to spend on good music, don’t have any say in the matter either.



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About the Author

Steven has been around the tech world long enough to see most of the stuff we think of cool happen before which leads to a certain bit of cynicism that has contributed to him being known as the cranky old fart of the Internet. Besides sharing some of the goodness that he finds with you here at 42x you can also find him curating some digital goodness at Winextra (tech type stuff) and Rotten Gumdrops (for your daily dose of WTF).

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