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Apple reportedly pressing labels for exclusive content as digital music sales dip

post #1 of 96
Thread Starter 
Sources within the music industry say Apple is pushing major record labels to offer exclusive content on iTunes, which would be sold using windowing strategies to boost slumping track and album sales.

Beyonce
Apple's iTunes music store as seen on the release of Beyonce's latest album.


According to Billboard, people familiar with Apple's recent moves said iTunes director Robert Kondrk has been aggressively going after labels to release exclusive content. The model would be similar to that of Beyonce's highly successful "visual album" released late last year.

In December, Beyonce dropped her self-titled album on iTunes and kept it an Apple exclusive for one week. Sold as a full album with 14 songs and 17 accompanying videos, "BEYONCE" moved over 800,000 copies worldwide in just three days, a record for Apple.

Key to the so-called "visual album's" success was the windowed sales strategy employed by Beyonce's Parkwood Entertainment and Columbia Records, which kept single tracks off streaming services until the second week of availability. The singer even kept YouTube videos to a minimum and only offered 30-second teasers at launch.

Windowing is used in a number of consumable content industries as a means to spur sales. A good example of the strategy is the sale of hardcover books, which bring in more money for publishers than the cheaper softcover versions released a few weeks later.

Sources claim Kondrk engaged in discussions during Grammy Week in January to push major labels to release new albums under similar sales models. The executive even suggested that new albums did not have to be iTunes exclusives as long as streaming services were shut out, the people said.

"The iTunes theory was that because of the easy availability to access albums on YouTube it has punctured sales globally for track and albums," said an unnamed executive from a major record label.

Kondrk also asked that individual tracks be windowed for a certain period before being sold separately from the full album and before being made available to streaming services. This is counter to the original iTunes model that sought to disrupt the space by breaking up albums and selling tracks individually.
post #2 of 96

I know why I don't buy as much music as I used to from iTunes and it's got nothing to do with Apple:

 

Apple Products: So good that their ‘faulty' products outsell competitor’s faultless ones...
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Apple Products: So good that their ‘faulty' products outsell competitor’s faultless ones...
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post #3 of 96
Maybe if music these days didn't suck so hard, people would buy more. Can't even blame file sharing anymore, so now that that skapegoat is out of the picture, the major labels have no one to blame but themselves.

As for Apple, they were just late to the streaming game, and when they finally joined the party, they didn't show up with anything that distinguished them from the established competition. They honestly think "exclusive content" is going to bring consumers back? Hardly. The labels can pull a Beyoncé only so often before they piss off the other distributors to the point of losing their business entirely. Target is still fuming over that little debacle that cost them millions in album sales. If Tim keeps trying to play this game of "our way or the highway," he's going to be looking down the barrel of another anti-trust lawsuit. What one calls "windowing," another would describe as "anti-competitive." Your hardcover analogy is way off, btw, as hardcovers are available at multiple outlets at once, and they add value to collectors. What value does a "digital extra" add, when it's neither tangible nor exclusive, as they all find their way to YouTube etc eventually?
Edited by Cash907 - 3/1/14 at 3:37am
post #4 of 96
Here's a wild idea. Lower the prices.
post #5 of 96
I suggest this exclusive content is released on a new label like this .... 1biggrin.gif


From Apple ][ - to new Mac Pro I've used them all.
Long on AAPL so biased
Google Motto "You're not the customer. You're the product."
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From Apple ][ - to new Mac Pro I've used them all.
Long on AAPL so biased
Google Motto "You're not the customer. You're the product."
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post #6 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by dequardo View Post

Here's a wild idea. Lower the prices.

Here's a wild idea. Get a job.

Daniel Swanson

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Daniel Swanson

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post #7 of 96
Originally Posted by GTR View Post
I know why I don't buy as much music as I used to from iTunes and it's got nothing to do with Apple:

 

I was going to comment more on the fact that the song seems to be a “XXX tweaker mix”, but then I remembered it’s “twerking” and that a tweaker has a valid use in society. 

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
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Originally Posted by Marvin

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post #8 of 96

Drops in sales have little do with Apple and iTunes and more to do with shifts in 1) consumer consumption and 2) overall demand. Many are quite happy, especially in younger generations to stream on demand through Spotify or even iTunes Radio. I don't buy the YouTube argument. The second part is how many times can people build/buy their music libraries to begin with?

I'm not a pessimist. I'm an optimist, with experience.
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I'm not a pessimist. I'm an optimist, with experience.
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post #9 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by thataveragejoe View Post
 

Drops in sales have little do with Apple and iTunes and more to do with shifts in 1) consumer consumption and 2) overall demand. Many are quite happy, especially in younger generations to stream on demand through Spotify or even iTunes Radio. I don't buy the YouTube argument. The second part is how many times can people build/buy their music libraries to begin with?

Since my kids have started using Google music streaming, they haven't bought a single song, nor have we had to gift them cards for purchasing music. That's been over 6 months now. We used to spend easily $200/year on both kids.

post #10 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by DanielSW View Post

Here's a wild idea. Get a job.

I have a nice one. Hate much?
post #11 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

I suggest this exclusive content is released on a new label like this .... 1biggrin.gif



Those lawsuits against Apple Corps were a long and winding road.

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #12 of 96
I use a music subscription service so I don't buy music through iTunes any more. I'm hopping apple does a media subscription service with music, movies, & tv (book magiznes would be a bonus). Looks like amazon is moving in that direction. I'd pay $20 a month for that.

First I would apple to fix the iOS :\safari crash bug. It has crashed 5 times trying to post this!
post #13 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

Those lawsuits against Apple Corps were a long and winding road.

But to the benefit of both they found a way to come together
melior diabolus quem scies
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melior diabolus quem scies
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post #14 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post

But to the benefit of both they found a way to come together

And now they both have a ticket to ride. (this will all end with someone else saying let it be.)

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #15 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

And now they both have a ticket to ride. (this will all end with someone else saying let it be.)

This topic is so yesterday.
post #16 of 96
For a second there I thought I was reading a description of Grand Admiral Thrawn. An appropriate heir to the empire.
post #17 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by jungmark View Post

This topic is so yesterday.

Can you guys just let it be already?
"Few things are harder to put up with than the annoyance of a good example" Mark Twain
"Just because something is deemed the law doesn't make it just" - SolipsismX
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"Few things are harder to put up with than the annoyance of a good example" Mark Twain
"Just because something is deemed the law doesn't make it just" - SolipsismX
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post #18 of 96
I would like AI to explain its use of "aggressively going after," "pushing" and "pressing" in this context. As far as the actual content of the article, it states that Kondrk "asked" for things. So why not say Apple asked labels for exclusive content?

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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post #19 of 96

Apple needs a good Spotify competitor, not just Radio.

An on-demand streaming service for music and video is meant to happen somewhen. A 15-20$ a month for unlimited everything would be amazing!

post #20 of 96

This would be great for Apple because then everyone would have to buy an Apple product to listen to their music. 

post #21 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Zahran View Post

For a second there I thought I was reading a description of Grand Admiral Thrawn. An appropriate heir to the empire.

Not for long.
http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2014/01/op-ed-disney-takes-a-chainsaw-to-the-star-wars-expanded-universe/

Pretty soon, the Star Wars Ewok Holiday Special will be more canon than Thrawn and Friends.

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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post #22 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post

Can you guys just let it be already?

Just as Soli predicted. 1biggrin.gif

Ya gotta watch for the sneaky white type.
melior diabolus quem scies
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melior diabolus quem scies
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post #23 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Zahran View Post

For a second there I thought I was reading a description of Grand Admiral Thrawn. An appropriate heir to the empire.

I posted this under Tim Cook's biography, how did it get here?  

post #24 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

Not for long.
http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2014/01/op-ed-disney-takes-a-chainsaw-to-the-star-wars-expanded-universe/

Pretty soon, the Star Wars Ewok Holiday Special will be more canon than Thrawn and Friends.

There was an Ewok special? I thought only the Wookie special ever saw the light of day.
post #25 of 96

How about monetizing iTune's in some original and imaginative way instead of trying to wring blood out of an old stone? Wake up Apple!

post #26 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post

Just as Soli predicted. 1biggrin.gif

Ya gotta watch for the sneaky white type.

Doh!!! It doesn't show up on the mobile version.
"Few things are harder to put up with than the annoyance of a good example" Mark Twain
"Just because something is deemed the law doesn't make it just" - SolipsismX
Reply
"Few things are harder to put up with than the annoyance of a good example" Mark Twain
"Just because something is deemed the law doesn't make it just" - SolipsismX
Reply
post #27 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post

Doh!!! It doesn't show up on the mobile version.


"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply
post #28 of 96

If Apple is "pressing labels" can I have one too? I'm gonna stick it on my bumper.

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
Reply
post #29 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by jungmark View Post

There was an Ewok special? I thought only the Wookie special ever saw the light of day.

 

Two Ewok specials saw the light of day:

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0087225/

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0089110/

 

Sounds like George Lucas "double downed" on the furry critters. I mean, they did defeat The Empire.

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
Reply

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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post #30 of 96

That's smart, if people can't get stuff anywhere else, they'll have to pay more.  Great plan for both Apple and the music industry.  Win/win

post #31 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post

Just as Soli predicted. 1biggrin.gif

Ya gotta watch for the sneaky white type.

That should have been the end, but I've got a feeling, I should have known better.

Life is too short to drink bad coffee.

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Life is too short to drink bad coffee.

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post #32 of 96

I haven't purchased any music from iTunes in a couple of years. Even then, it was just a nostalgic thing at a get together with some old friends. Someone said "remember that song..." so I just downloaded it so we could all reminisce for the moment.

 

Mostly listen to Radio Paradise online or with the app.

Life is too short to drink bad coffee.

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Life is too short to drink bad coffee.

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post #33 of 96
What's funny about this article is that they saw Apple is pushing Beyonce's last release as an example.

So tell the labels you want them to release more of an album that was a non label release.

A non tech's thoughts on Apple stuff 

(She's family so I'm a little biased)

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A non tech's thoughts on Apple stuff 

(She's family so I'm a little biased)

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post #34 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post


Can you guys just let it be already?

Yeah, enough of the quotes. I've had a hard day's night.

"If the young are not initiated into the village, they will burn it down just to feel its warmth."
- African proverb
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"If the young are not initiated into the village, they will burn it down just to feel its warmth."
- African proverb
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post #35 of 96
The real poison pill for the music industry is their approval of the streaming model. It's absolutely moronic offering all you can eat for a small monthly fee, or totally free with ads. What did they expect? It's like buying all the gas you can use for $10 or 20 a month - it's not sustainable. The songwriters and artists are the ones getting screwed.
post #36 of 96
I would like iTunes Radio to be available here in NZ.

My last album purchase was Pearl Jam's latest. Before that I can't remember it was a while ago.
post #37 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by FreeRange View Post

The real poison pill for the music industry is their approval of the streaming model. It's absolutely moronic offering all you can eat for a small monthly fee, or totally free with ads. What did they expect? It's like buying all the gas you can use for $10 or 20 a month - it's not sustainable. The songwriters and artists are the ones getting screwed.

 

True, but unless they stop putting their music on YouTube, they're going to have trouble getting people to pay more than that. You can put together YouTube playlists of all your favorite songs for free, and with AdBlock there's not even any advertising. 

post #38 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by Benjamin Frost View Post
 

Yeah, enough of the quotes. I've had a hard day's night.

 

 

When I think about what is released by the labels I have just one thought: "Help!"

post #39 of 96

Exclusive content is a mistake. People will simply turn to piracy. The extra effort to pirate music is so minimal that few people would resist it.

 

Also I laughed quite hard at 'get a job'. As if not buying enough music is the consumer's fault instead of a bad market.

post #40 of 96
Originally Posted by ItsTheInternet View Post
Exclusive content is a mistake. People will simply turn to piracy.

 

Yeah, I’m sure¡

 
As if not buying enough music is the consumer's fault instead of a bad market. 

 

Stealing music because you don’t have the money to buy it… IS.

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
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Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
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