Sam Smith's debut album, In The Lonely Hour, has officially gone platinum.
Sam Smith’s debut album In The Lonely Hour has been certified Platinum by the RIAA, following Multi-Platinum (4X) certification for his debut single, “Stay With Me,” and his current Platinum smash, “I’m Not The Only One.”* In addition to In the Lonely Hour selling more than one million copies by the traditional measures of physical and download album sales, it has sold an additional one million when factoring in the newer metrics of track- and stream-equivalent albums (as computed by Nielsen SoundScan).
This is the part where Ariana Grande breaks free from the rest of 2014 releases as her latest album, My Everything, was certified platinum by the RIAA, making it only the third album of the year to break the one million mark.
So far there are a big fat zero platinum albums issued this year. Taylor Swift -- you are our only hope.
Yet the year is not a complete wash, as 60 individual songs have been certified as platinum, and this is a clear reflection of the overall shift that the industry has made back to a singles-based focus. Thanks to digital downloads, buyers are no longer required to purchase an entire album, but when compared to last year, the number of platinum-certified singles is still down more than 20%.
The RIAA wants to "fix" music licensing. Glenn Peoples, writing for Billboard, explains:
The RIAA believes any fix to the music licensing system should include a simplified, blanket license that pays a fair market value to creators and copyright owners. In its 52-page filing to the Copyright Office, the RIAA argues that a market-derived royalty system would benefit rights holders and creators, product greater consumer choice, cost savings for digital services due to simpler licensing procedures, improved transparency and accuracy of royalty payments, and help spur new business models and services by providing greater transparency of the costs and eliminating the delays caused by litigation.