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Chart revamp means more streams needed to equal a sale

By | Published on Monday 19 December 2016

Official Charts Company

So, are you all excited about this week’s race for the Christmas number one spot? Perhaps thingy will win it. Or whatnot. I reckon it’ll be whatnot. But what an exciting battle it’s proving to be. Good luck thingy!

Anyway, the charts. Everyone likes chatting about the charts don’t they? Well, some people do. Record industry people for example. They like chatting about the charts, don’t they? Though it’s true that that chart chat might these days mainly consist of waffling on about how the inclusion of streaming data has “broken” the Top 40.

Worry not though, that’s all about to be fixed. From January, rather than 100 streams being equated to the sale of a track, it’ll take 150 whole streams for a dash to be chalked on the big chart counting board.

It’s hoped that the statistical rejig will halt a recent trend for the big streaming hits to clog up the charts for weeks on end, stopping newer releases and newer talent from getting a few days of chart-style glory. I mean, Drake’s ‘One Dance’ spent fifteen weeks at number one earlier this year and, as Bryan Adams will tell you, shit like that never happened in the old days.

Says chief chart overseer Martin Talbot about updating the Official Charts Company’s methodology just two and half years after first putting streaming data into the main singles chart: “It is testament to the rapidly changing nature of music consumption in the UK – and the huge shift we are seeing towards streaming – that we are updating the way we measure the contribution of streams to the make-up of the official charts as quickly as we are. Streaming is growing exponentially and the weighting we use to reflect its impact will inevitably keep evolving with it”.

Bruno Brookes was unavailable for comment.