Video streams to count towards UK Albums Chart from next year

For the first time in UK Albums Chart history, video streams will count towards an album’s overall success from the start of next year.

Central Cee Doja Cat

The move has been introduced to take account of a wider variety of music consumption and followed months of discussion between the Chart Supervisory Committee, comprising record labels, digital platforms and retailers in the industry.

It means that streams of videos from the likes of YouTube, Spotify, Apple Music and Amazon Music will now count in the UK Albums Chart in the same way as audio streams.

For those who enjoy a bit of detailed rules, video streams will feed into what’s called the ‘SEA-2 methodology’, which is essentially designed to calculate the overall popularity of an album and not have an inflated popularity based on the viral success of one track – which can be especially relevant for videos.

Streaming music

Under the method, first introduced in February 2015 (when the concept of going ‘viral’ began to really take off), the streams of an album’s 16 most streamed tracks are aggregated. The top two tracks are then neutralised to the average of the next 14. The total streams from this is then divided by 1,000 to create an album stream.

Video streams have been recognised by the Official Charts before. Since 2018, they’ve counted towards the success of singles – but it was thought at the time they would skew the overall charting of a full album, since videos are predominantly played separately to albums.

That view’s now been shifted, however; helped by the fact that video streams now account for some 6.7% of total music consumption in the streaming market.

Charlotte De Burgh-Holder, Official Charts chair, has said: “As the music market evolves, so too does the way we measure success.”

“Official Charts have always set the gold standard for chart compilation, and their addition of video to the albums chart reflects their dedication to always having the clearest picture of how the UK consumes their favourite music.”

The knock-on effect of this, of course, is that we may well be getting some flashier music videos from now on – ones that try and grab our attention that little bit more.

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