A change in RIAA certifications now includes on-demand audio and video streams of songs.
As the music industry continues to adjust to the age of the Internet, The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) has announced a new change in their certification of Gold and Platinum awards.
The RIAA will now count the amount of audio and video song streams towards gold and platinum certification. The stream counts come from on-demand streaming sources like MOG, Muve Music, Rdio, Rhapsody, Slacker, Spotify, and Xbox Music, as well as video streaming sources such as YouTube, VEVO, MTV, and others.
These streams are not only going to start on future certifications, but will be added to already-certified gold or platinum songs. This means that, for example, Kanye West's "Stronger" is now 5x platinum, and Eminem's "Love The Way You Lie" is now 11x platinum. J. Cole's "Workout" is now 2x platinum.
According to HHNM, RIAA says of the included types of streams, "On-demand streams on digital music services that are authorized by and reported to the record labels, whether paid for by the consumer through a subscription or free to the consumer through ad-supported services, will be accepted for RIAA certifications."
Cary Sherman, RIAA's CEO & Chairman, said on the decision, "Including music streaming in Gold & Platinum awards marks the continued evolution of the industry’s premier program for recognizing artistic achievement, and it reflects the wide spectrum of ways consumers enjoy music from their favorite bands. The music business, along with its incredible array of digital service partners, is offering fans more access to music than ever before. We’re thrilled that our awards will now more fully recognize artists’ commercial success today."
Billboard announced a similar change in their charting system this past year as well. See a list of some of the updated certified tracks above, now taking into consideration the on-demand streams.