This July the rest of the world will be moving in step with Australia and will be making Friday the official global album release day.
According to Music Week, the first worldwide Friday release date has been revealed to be July 10th 2015, and comes after the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) indicated last month that the change would come into effect in “summer 2015”.
The new date brings all regions in line with release dates in both Australia and Germany and is likely a reaction to Australia’s high rates of music and online content piracy. Writing about the change last month, the IFPI said Friday is “the day that best suits consumers”.
“Music fans live in the digital world of today,” said IFPI head Frances Moore. “Their love for new music doesn’t recognize national borders. They want music when it’s available on the internet — not when it’s ready to be released in their country. An aligned global release day puts an end to the frustration of not being able to access releases in their country when the music is available in another country.
“Friday and Saturday are the days of highest footfall in physical retail stores and the highest levels of purchasing traffic online. It’s also the time of greatest activity on social media, helping amplify the buzz around new releases everywhere. And the weekend is a time for greater spontaneous purchasing.”
The change hasn’t been received well by all industry figures, with Belgian independent record label group [PIAS]’s co-founder Michel Lambot voicing his concren that the global release date could lead to “the gradual erosion of local music culture”.
“If a global chart reigns supreme, development artists and local artists will have to get used to hearing the voice of America, everywhere. Big money, big global campaigns, will dominate. This can only help the blockbusters become even bigger, for a longer period of time, in more markets,” he wrote in a recent blog post.
The IFPI also conceded that not everyone’s going to be happy with the move. “Inevitably a global project involving more than 50 countries is not going to make every stakeholder in every country happy. There will be upheaval for some, no doubt. However, the truth is that there has been no credible alternative to a Friday proposed that would work at the global level.”