The N.Y Times has a story up about how the music industry is starting to shake at a horrible thought for them: After years of massive growth, digital music sales rose only six percent in 2010, potentially meaning that digital sales as a whole have plateaued. Coupled with the news that overall music sales fell eight percent, that means that digital music isn't replacing revenues for physical sales.
In each of the past two years, the rate of increase in digital revenue has approximately halved. If that trend continues, digital sales could top out at less than $5 billion this year, about a third of the overall music market but many billions of dollars short of the amount needed to replace long-gone sales of compact discs.
“Music’s first digital decade is behind us and what do we have?” said Mark Mulligan, an analyst at Forrester Research. “Not a lot of progress.” “We are at one of the most worrying stages yet for the industry,” he continued. “As things stand now, digital music has failed.”
Big words, big worries. There's also info in the story about how music companies are probably going to start going hard at pirates, which is big news for all of us. Let's just hope they bungle that as badly as they have digital music sales. Amirite, guys? ZING! Read it at NY Times.