Music Sales in U.S. Fell 2.4% in 2010; Digital Music Accounts for 46% of Purchases

katy perry

A top-selling digital song of 2010 was “California Gurls” by Katy Perry (4.4 million).

U.S. music sales fell 2.4% in 2010 to 1.5 billion units, as CD sales plummeted nearly 20% while digital track sales were up just 1%, according to a report from Nielsen and Billboard. Digital track sales were 1.17 billion in 2010, up from 1.16 in 2009. While CD sales fell precipitously last year, digital album sales rose 13% to 863 million. The report notes that digital music accounted for 46% of all U.S. music purchases in 2010, up from 40% in 2009 and 32% in 2008, and digital track sales broke the 1 billion sales mark for the third straight year.

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Pink Floyd Only Wants You To Download Their Entire Albums, Not Individual Songs

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By the way, which one’s Pink?

Pink Floyd has won a court ruling that will put an end to places like iTunes selling its songs individually. The band feels that their music can only truly be appreciated in the album format, from start to finish, and it never liked people being able to pick and choose what songs they wanted to download.

The gist of the ruling—The High Court in the UK, to be exact—is that EMI, the band’s record label, won’t be allowed to sell individual songs from its catalog online. That means, from now on, you’ll only be able to buy The Wall as a full album online, and not merely “In The Flesh?” and “The Thin Ice.”

That’s the debate: should consumers be allowed to buy whatever song they want without having to buy an entire album?

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