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Business News (more headlines) 06-30-2014

Official Singles Chart To Count Audio Streams For The First Time

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The Official Singles Chart is to include audio streams for the first time from next month (July), the Official Charts Company can confirm today.

The first Official Singles Chart to incorporate streams will be unveiled from 4-7pm on Sunday July 6 by BBC Radio 1, as the nation's favourite rundown is adjusted to reflect the growing popularity of streaming. The full Top 100 will be published on OfficialCharts.com at 7pm.

The move, supported by the UK music industry, follows an explosion in streaming in the UK with the total number of weekly audio streams selected by music fans growing from 100 million a week in January 2013 to 200 million a week in January 2014 to up to 260 million.

Daft Punk's Get Lucky became the first track to be streamed 1 million times in a week last spring, but 2014 has already seen 9 tracks generate more than 1 million streams in a single week, including two tracks passing the 1.5 million weekly barrier - Rather Be by Clean Bandit Ft Jess Glynne and Waves by Mr Probz.

The move to include streams in the Official Singles Chart was made possible by the agreement of on-demand audio streaming services including Spotify, Deezer, Napster, O2 Tracks, Xbox Music and Sony's Music Unlimited and rara (both powered by Omnifone), all members of the Entertainment Retailers Association (ERA), co-owners of the Official Charts Company, to supply weekly streaming data. To reflect the difference in weight between streaming and purchasing, 100 streams will count as equivalent to 1 single (download or physical single) in the chart compilation process.

Bastille have recorded a video message on behalf of the Official Charts Company about today's announcement. Their track Pompeii has been confirmed as the UK's most streamed track of all time.

In a forthcoming full interview on OfficialCharts.com Bastille front man Dan Smith comments: "Hearing Pompeii has had over 26 million streams is amazing and completely weird and we're really really happy. I think streaming going into the chart is definitely a good thing. I think for the charts to be fair it has to reflect how people digest music."

"I know with our album we've been really lucky and it's far exceeded what we expected in terms of how many it actually sold, but if you look at the live shows we do versus how many albums we've sold, it's clear that at least double, if not more, people have heard or own the album than have actually paid for it. I think bringing streaming in to that is pretty much as close as you can get to reality, so it's definitely a good thing."

This evolution of the Official Singles Chart has broad support from many interest groups across the industry, across independent and major labels, physical and digital retailers, managers, artists, as well as key media partners of the Official Chart - BBC Radio 1, MTV, Music Week and many more.

In a parallel move, the Official Breakers Chart will be launched to reflect the fastest growing new tracks. The rundown will showcase the 10 biggest new tracks of each week which have seen an increase in sales and streams.

In turn, the BPI (co-owners of the Official Charts with ERA) will also update the famous Platinum, Gold and Silver Certified Awards programme which it administers, to ensure that streams will now also count towards certifications of singles.

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