Online streaming has undoubtedly changed the way artists promote themselves and the way fans access to the music they love. Remember those days when you used to like a song, and had to tape record it to play it later? Or when you used to call to the radio and ask them to play it for you? Or maybe you still reminiscent the time when you used to go to a record’s store to buy the new album from your favorite band. Well, those days are long gone, as streaming services such as iTunes or Spotify are taking over the industry. And as far as video goes, YouTube has been by far the number one choice, since its wide variety of free content allows everyone to even listen to a full album without having to spend one single cent.
Yet, up until now there has been a big dilemma around this issue: are those songs that you play on YouTube over and over again, getting recognised somehow? Is the popularity of these artists escalating thanks to you? Are you contributing to your idol’s success? Well, to reply to these questions, it seems that soon you won’t have to feel guilty anymore, as rumors say YouTube play counts will start to be taken into consideration for Billboard 200 Albums Chart.
The action, although it still has to be confirmed by Billboard, comes from the need to reflect the evolution of music production in the digital world. Currently, YouTube is taken into account for the Top 100 Singles Chart, and their influence is already being evaluated by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) when awarding gold or platinum statuses, as their Chairman and CEO Cary Sherman expressed:
“Modernizing our Album Award to include music streaming is the next logical step in the continued evolution of Gold and Platinum Awards, and doing so enables RIAA to fully reward the success of artists’ albums today.”
Whether or not this update takes place, we cannot deny that this new game will set chart-topping as a more realistic goal, thus giving the artists more tools to climb up the ranks. So just bear with YouTube’s must-watch ads, it will definitely be worth it.