Update, It appears Radiohead thinks comScore study is flawed…
Radiohead’s representatives said in a statement. “However, they can confirm that the figures quoted by the company comScore are wholly inaccurate and in no way reflect definitive market intelligence or, indeed, the true success of the project.”
Radiohead chose to release its new album — “In Rainbows” — online and allowed fans determine the price. This was a great social experiment to determine the necessity of record labels and whether fans would pay for music if given the opportunity to have it for free.
According to comScore about 1.2 million people visited the album site in October (assumably most came for the album), but only 38 percent were willing to pay for it. The other 62 percent just downloaded it for free. It gets worse…as the average download was $2.26 ($6 for those that included some amount of payment).
I still love the idea of cutting out the middle man and selling directly to your fans, but perhaps the next band will realize its poor judgment to allow fans to pick the price. To Radiohead’s credit…the $2 all goes to the band(instead of a label), but I still have to think they were shooting for a number higher than that.