Coketunes down while digital up

May 24, 2007


Music download site Coketunes has announced their shut down earlier this summer.

Coketunes, which started in late 2005 – when it was New Zealand’s biggest legal music download site – will wind up on August 10, at a time when digital music is about to make a big impact on the nation’s singles and album charts.

The news comes as the Recording Industry Association launches a new-look sales chart based on counter sales, radio airplay and, for the first time, digital music downloads.

Coca-Cola says the demise of Coketunes has nothing to do with competition from other websites and the hotting up of the digital music market since the Apple iTunes store opened in November.

Coca-Cola communications manager Alison Sykora says the website had served its purpose and it was time to focus on new ideas.

“When we came up with the concept it was to provide something that wasn’t available in terms of having a mass online music store with most of the major record labels on board,” Sykora says. “It’s basically a case of the job having been done. It did what we wanted by providing what our consumers wanted at the time.”

She says one of the main objectives of Coketunes was to channel the profits from the website back into a music fund to help promote emerging New Zealand artists.

Only two received grants- singer Ladi6 got $15,000 for her debut album and the Madison Press received $12,000 worth of music equipment.

The new music charts start next week and the Recording Industry Association expects the singles chart to take on a very different look given that digital music sales will be taken into account.

It will also be a more accurate reflection of what New Zealanders are listening to compared with the old system which was based mostly on radio airplay.

Changes in the album charts will be less obvious because the actual album – not a digital version – is still the dominant format.

The digital sales data will be collected from sites that include digiRAMA, Vodafone, Telecom, Textunes, Amplifier, RipIt and iTunes.


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