Young people "buying so many cassettes they're evolving fingers shaped like pencils to tighten the spools', BBC believe
Hey, you know what? Kids today! They're buying cassettes like they're coming back into fashion.
That's what the BBC say, anyway:
One in 10 young people has bought a music cassette tape in the last month, a new survey done to coincide with Record Store Day suggests.In the last month.
The research suggests that physical formats are still more popular than digital downloads.
In the last year, 57% of the people surveyed had bought a CD, while 39% had purchased an MP3 download.
There's just over four million 20-24 year olds in the UK, so that would imply 400,000 cassettes sold each month just to that proportion of the 18-24 year old age group. Let's be generous and assume 18 & 19 year olds bought no cassettes at all, and that for the other 11 months of the year, none of this age group bought any cassettes.
How does this figure fit with cassette sales?
Well, we know that in 2013, album sales on media other than CD, vinyl or digital download accounted for just 73,000 sales. That's cassettes, but also box sets of vinyl, DVD Audio and other strange beasts. But let's pretend that it's all tape, shall we?
Ah, but for singles, the figure for 'others' is six million or so. Could that be where all these cassette purchases are hidden?
Probably not - the other figure for 2012 was nearly four and a half million, and we know just 604 of those were cassingles. Even if we - again generously - assume a 100-fold increase in cassette single sales between 2012 and 2013, that's 60,400 sales.
So, even on the most generous and lax granting of licence, and over-estimating like we're Nigel Farage putting in his office running costs, we make that 133,000 cassettes sold in 2013.
So, for the Record Store Day figures to hold up, we're going to have to believe that a thin sliver of the national demographic suddenly bought four times as many tapes in March 2014 as the entire population in the whole of 2013 on the loosest possible reading of the figures.
In other words: this is absolute tock-widdle, and the BBC should be ashamed of running it as fact. But not as ashamed as Record Store Day should be of putting out such ramtwaddle.
If 1 in 10 "young people" bought a cassette last year, Record Store Day wouldn't exist. If you believe that survey you are a prize chump.— Hugh Platt (@HughDoVoodoo) April 16, 2014