The Internet has disrupted the music industry in countless ways in the past two decades, but one thing has stayed the same: the day of the week each country puts out records.
In Canada and the United States, Tuesdays have long been the the day consumers would line up at record stores to get their hands on new releases. In France and the U.K, it's been Mondays. And in Germany and Australia? Fridays.
With albums just a click away online – whether legally or illegally – that doesn't make much sense any more, and the global recording industry is finally acknowledging this Internet-led discrepancy. Beginning Friday, at least 45 different countries will shift their weekly album release days to Friday, giving music fans even more reason to look forward to the weekend.
Led by the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, the recording industry's global lobbying group, the shift to "New Music Fridays" has been in the works for months. Fridays were selected after a seven-market consumer research study that saw two-thirds of respondents prefer weekend release dates.
"The switch to New Music Fridays is about getting new music to fans at the time they most want to enjoy it, whether in physical stores or online," Frances Moore, the IFPI's chief executive officer, wrote in a press release.
It's not a perfect shift; some major albums are released significantly earlier in high-sales markets like Japan. Canadian pop star Carly Rae Jepsen's new album E.MO.TION, for instance, has had strong sales in Japan since launching there in June, but won't be available in Canada until August.