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Tuesday, 21 August, 2001, 12:10 GMT 13:10 UK
Music sales slump in world markets
CDs, tapes and minidiscs
Germany and the US have seen drops in sales
Slumps in music sales in two of the world's biggest markets have been blamed on the rise of CD-copying.

Sales of all formats in America dropped by 10% over the last year, and the number of CDs sold in Germany fell by the same proportion, new figures show.

The British market has gone against the trend, with recent figures showing strong growth in the albums market.

Music industry officials in America and Germany have pointed the finger at the rise of CD "burning" - or copying songs onto blank CDs - as a cause of the problem.

Security devices

Their criticism comes after a victory in the online arena, after record companies blamed free online song-swapping service Napster for harming CD sales.

Record companies are now preparing to launch their own paid-for music download services after crippling Napster through legal proceedings.

Napster
Napster was blamed for harming CD sales
But the industry is now trying to develop a way to counter its latest problem and stop fans using their computers to copy CDs.

US figures showed a dip of 5% in CD sales and a drop of 43% in the sales of music bought on cassette.

An industry study found that half of those questioned had downloaded music from the internet in the last month, and 70% of those had burnt the songs onto CD.

Hilary Rosen, head of the Recording Industry Association of America, said she expected the figures to improve by the end of the year.

'Fear'

In Germany, Peter Zombik, head of the country's phonographic industry federation, said the decline in sales was the worst for 20 years.

"CD burners were the best-sellers in last year's Christmas sales and we fear it'll be the same this year," he told the music business's Popkomm conference, according to Handelsblatt.com.

Some 133 million blank CDs were used to copy music in the last year, compared with a total of 109 million CDs, tapes and records that were bought, he said.

Earlier this month, British figures showed that album sales have risen by 18% in the first half of the year.

See also:

28 Jun 01 | Business
Tax CD burners, says German court
05 May 01 | Sci/Tech
Computers burnt by CD software
07 Aug 01 | Music
CD sales continue to rise
26 Feb 01 | Entertainment
Napster blamed for CD singles slump
12 Jun 01 | New Media
Hunting the music pirates
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