Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Radiohead Free CD Music Experiment Leads to More Sales

Radiohead’s album was bought three million times across all formats and sold more physical CD copies than the band’s last two records, despite its initial availability online at potentially no cost. Despite being available potentially for free online, the record still sold 1.75 million physical copies (2001’s Amnesiac sold just 900,000 copies, 2003’s Hail to the Thief shifted 990,000; each less loved than the latest). The band even managed to make £4 million from the 100,000 people that bought the lavish In Rainbows boxed set at £40 each. The juicy bit: before physical CD copies went on sale, publishing income from In Rainbows‘ pay-what-you-like digital experiment reached higher than the band’s entire previous digital sales publishing income. Remember, this is not sales income and, true, before In Rainbows, the band had made scant little from digital anyway as it refused to sell via iTunes - but even so, the album also scored more retail sales from digital than Hail to the Thief did across all formats.

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