May 12th, 2015

Charts of RIAA data by format

Units, dollars, inflation adjusted dollars. Great work by Andrea Swensson over at Minnesota NPR.

Still trying to produce a rationale for guessing when CDs quit being "manufactured" in the old skool sense, and go to Disc On-Demand only, or small-lot production a la vinyl. The majors saw this coming back in 2004-5 time frame, when they sold off their manufacturing units and contracted with them for production. Then a few years ago, they started terminating some of those contracts and also working more with on-demand suppliers such as CreateSpace, initially for back catalog/out of print titles. That would _appear_ to be the "end game" for CDs, and that could last for the rest of our lifetimes and beyond. It seems like we'll have arrived in that era no later than 2022, and possibly within a year or three.