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Billboard changing albums chart to count YouTube streams

The update might benefit specific genres, like Latin, hip-hop, and electronic.


Alexandra Samuels


Posted on Dec 14, 2019   Updated on May 19, 2021, 8:27 pm CDT

Billboard made an important announcement Friday for musicians around the world: It will now count YouTube streams toward the publication’s weekly album charts, including the Billboard 200, the New York Times reports. 

According to the Times, YouTube streams will be counted in the same way as Apple, Spotify, Tidal, and Vevo streams in the chart’s calculations. 

“It’s an important part of music consumption, and it’s time to recognize that,” Deanna Brown, the president of the Billboard-Hollywood Reporter Media Group, told the Times.

The change is slated to take place on Jan. 3. User-generated content—like song covers—will not count. 

Though this is a drastic change for the Billboard charts, YouTube data has factored into the Billboard Hot 100 and other singles charts since 2003, Forbes reports. 

According to Vulture, YouTubers Jake Paul and Rebecca Black have previously cracked the Hot 100 list.

In a statement to Forbes, Lyor Cohen, YouTube’s global head of music, emphasized how the update might benefit specific genres and work toward “making the chart a more accurate representation of what people are listening to.” 

“Genres like Latin, hip-hop and electronic, which consistently dominate the YouTube charts, will now be properly recognized for their popularity,” Cohen said.


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*First Published: Dec 14, 2019, 2:43 pm CST