HITS Daily Double


It's a Done Deal: IFPI Announces Friday as Global Release Day

The IFPI has announced Friday as the global release day for new music. The move brings all territories in line with Australia and Germany, with the global street date to be implemented this summer.

In a statement, the organization's Frances Moore describes the move as "an important milestone for our whole sector" that was "long in preparation, and long in consultation."

"So the target is a big one but a manageable one: by the summer this year new releases will be issued at 00:01 on Fridays," Moore declared.

Moore's announcement reinforces his prior claims that a globally aligned Friday street date will relieve the frustration of consumers who see music they want available in other territories but not their own; that it will spike enthusiasm for new music and take advantage of increased weekend "footfall" at retail; and that it will reduce piracy.

The IFPI has also posted a number of supportive quotes from industry folk, including the RIAA, Concord Music Group, Rdio and numerous international retailers, here. A statement from Spotify's Chief Content Officer Ken Parks, supplied separately, reads: "We very much welcome the concept of a global release day which should truly work for everyone; for music fans around the world, major and independent labels, digital and physical distributors, music retailers of all sizes and across all platforms, and of course the music creators themselves--artists."

Objections have come from indie label peeps, including BeggarsMartin Mills, several independent retailers in Europe and the U.K., who expressed frustration with the decision and claimed not to have been "consulted," despite the IFPI's assertions to the contrary, and merchants such as Target, which has threatened to drop music from its stores as a result of the change.

"There will be upheaval for some, no doubt," allows Moore's statement.

“The whole dynamic of the global release day consultation has been driven by one thing and one thing only—how best to serve the music consumer,” Moore told Music Week recently. “We’ve had a long consultation involving retailers, artists and record labels, and we have looked at a large amount of insight and research. The good news has been the widespread support we’ve seen around the world for global release day—no one has seriously questioned the concept, the only debate has been about the day. The artist organizations and many retailers and record companies internationally support Friday, and this is backed by consumer research in many countries.

“There are other voices who prefer other days, and that’s not surprising. It would be very surprising if a project like this, involving over 50 national markets, didn’t lead to some objections in some markets.”

Stay tuned for much more reaction.