US Music Shipments Down 15.8%
The fall in US music shipments is accelerating, says the RIAA. Total shipments during the first half of 2003 fell 15.8% from the same period last year to 398.5 million units, and the value of shipments was down 12% to $4.8 billion.
And "these illegal peer-to-peer services" and "illegal file sharing" are responsible for much of that decline, says RIAA president Cary-Sue Sherman.
This time last year, shipments were down 10.1% in units and 6.7% in value from the first half of 2001, and total CD shipments were down 15.3% in unit terms; this follows a 7% decline in first-half 2002.
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"The trade group attributes the declines, in large part, to music piracy on peer-to-peer networks and illegal CD copying," says a Billboard Bulletin story here.
It quotes Sherman as saying, "While there are other factors contributing to the decline of music shipments in 2003, including the fact that there are significantly fewer music retail locations, illegal file sharing continues to adversely impact the sale of physical CDs. We believe the use of these illegal peer-to-peer services is hurting the music industry's efforts to distribute music online in the way consumers demand."
In addition to the shuttered stores, the industry is beginning to feel the impact of a smaller pipeline as music retailers shrink their music inventory to make room for other merchandise lines, adds Billboard Bulletin.
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