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Jim Liebelt Christian Blog and Commentary

Teen Music-Purchasing Habits Shift Again

Teens increased their listening to music via online radio and satellite venues in 2008 resulting in a decrease in purchases of CD and digital formats. Peer-to-peer file sharing was down as well. The bad economy is one dynamic affecting music purchases, with 24 percent of teens saying they've cutback on entertainment spending.

Teen CD and digital music purchases surprisingly fell 19 percent in 2008 as buyers cited dissatisfaction with the music available and said that their current music needs were met.

The study of 4,000 consumers, conducted by The NPD Group, said CD purchases by teens, 13 to 17 years old, had been expected to decline and fell 26 percent, but in a surprising turn, paid digital downloads dropped 13 percent. Another unexpected move was the 6 percent falloff in the number of tracks downloaded from peer-to-peer music sites and the 28 percent decline in the number of CDs borrowed from friends to rip or burn.

One reason NPD cited for sales and downloading declines is the increase in teen music choices. The survey found a jump in online and satellite-radio listening, with 52 percent using online radio last year, up from 34 percent in 2007. Satellite usage jumped to 31 percent in 2008, from 19 percent in 2007.

The other new music venue is social-networking sites. NPD said 46 percent of the respondents reported listening to music on these Web sites last year, compared with 26 percent in 2007.

Source: TWICE (This Week In Consumer Electronics)