The Dark Side of the Tune
A new report for MusicTank, an information hub for the music business, aims to open up debate around the hidden energy costs of digital music consumption and the implications for the industry.
It focuses on the environmental impact of shifts from ‘ownership’ of physical or digital products towards the use of cloud-based services. The report by Dagfinn Bach highlights some of the energy costs inherent in a range of digital music services. Streaming an album can use 27 times more energy than manufacturing its CD equivalent, it says.
“The uptake of smart devices, combined with the advent of mass connectivity and high speed broadband continues to revolutionise our consumption of music. These changes also have considerable implications for the environment,” said Keith Harris, Chair of MusicTank and Director of performer affairs at PPL.
“Whereas, in the pre-digital era, music fans stuck a needle on the groove or hit a play button, today they are increasingly turning to cloud-based streaming services powered by energy-hungry server farms.”
The findings will be discusssed at an event launching The Dark Side of the Tune on 11 October.