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As of 1st January any track that is downloaded in the UK will count towards the UK Singles Chart. This is massive news for anyone into music and whilst on one hand is really good on the other could leave us with a chart swamped by 'Golden Oldies'

Under the new rules 'any' download counts towards the chart. Be it a current or old single, a b-side, or an albumn track. This will mean the return of a lot of older tracks which have previously fallen out of the charts as the old rules stopped including downloads after two weeks of the actual physical single being deleted from stores.

For instance this weeks chart has seen the return of Snow Patrol's "Chasing Cars" (in at #9 but previously reached #6 last July), Gnarls Barkley's massive summer hit "Crazy" (back in at #30), Nelly Furtado's "Maneater" (#1 last June) and outside of the Top 40 the effects are even more astounding with Gary Jule's 2003 Christmas #1 making a re-entry at #58 with his version of "Mad World".

Apparently EMI are thinking of releasing the Beatles back catalogue for download for the first time with industry experts expecting the Top 10 Singles to be entirely Beatles tracks once this happens under the new rules!

Wham's "Last Christmas" - along with many other festive tracks - would have been back in the Charts throughout December too.

So yes, I'm glad that the music industry is taking note of digital downloads but I'm not convinced it'll help with the diversity of the charts nor for the discovery of new talent.

Top 40 Changes Help Snow Patrol (BBC News Online; Monday 8th January 2007)

Chart Revamp Puts Downloads First (BBC News oNline; Friday 29th December 2006)


( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 8th, 2007 10:43 am (UTC)
" I'm not convinced it'll help with the diversity of the charts nor for the discovery of new talent."

Cant speak for diversity... But its odd to think that under these new rules one of the prime movers for discovering new talent (or even sharing music from around the world), could end up being th much hated Advertising Executive...

After all, thanks to some website like http://www.commercialbreaksandbeats.co.uk/search.asp (odd their front page appears to be broken), when advertisers look for undiscovered music for a cheaper soundtrack the downloads will gain a boost (we know it works, after the old 80's levi ad chart entries, and with more recent car advert tracks and the like.)...

But will they one day include free downloads too? One of my firm beliefs is that a few free tracks on an album as a sampler (or remixes), via the artists web page will help push sales and fight those 'dangerous illegal downloads', and in the meantime free samples can be used by up-and-coming bands via MySpace and own websites.

This might help with true discovery of new talent.
Jan. 8th, 2007 11:46 am (UTC)
yeah but it depends on the source doesn't it...?
Forinstance itunes US will have vastly fif tunes availbe to iTunes UK and Napster will have diff tunes again ...

it's all rather stupidand just illustrates that the commercial 'charts'vcan't kepe up with the tastes of every niche, so they will tend torward stating at the lowest demoniator will rise to the top.

For instanc eif every beatles fan in the world dicedes to digitise their catalouge via downloads tomorrow, then the top 40 could easily be all beatles tracks. ditto michael jackson, or heaven forbid oasis....
Jan. 8th, 2007 12:21 pm (UTC)
Re: yeah but it depends on the source doesn't it...?
It will depend on the source. Certainly illegal/personal file-sharing and downloads will not count. Nor will non-UK based sites (although many of these sites now block computers from IP's outside their territories).

If you're interested in the current Chart Rules check out the PDF rules document at http://www.theofficialcharts.com/docs/NEW_Single_Chart_Rules_2007.pdf
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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