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It’s safe to assume that as soon as the music industry established streaming charts, people were trying to game them. In fact, at a panel during A2IM’s Indie Week on Tuesday, one panelist stated that 3-4% of all officially counted music audio and video streams are not legitimate.

On that note, a coalition of artist organizations — 24 major companies and organizations, including major and independent labels, publishers and digital service providers — today announced their support of a new “Code of Best Practices” aimed at preventing and detecting stream manipulation, as well as mitigating against its effects in the marketplace. Read the Code in the link below.

Variety has been contacted by some but not all of the involved parties, who confirmed their participation; Variety has also obtained a copy of an internal memo issued by Sony Music earlier this month outlining similar policies.

The announcement states, “For the first time, nearly the entire industry is coming together to get ahead of this issue and stop illegitimate activity — to declare a heathy music economy is an accurate music market. And most importantly, coming together to agree on the importance of stopping plays on streaming services that do not represent genuine listening.”

The full Code can be found here:

https://www.scribd.com/document/413966254/Anti-Stream-Manipulation-Code-of-Best-Practice 

Below is the full list of coalition members:

Amazon

American Association of Independent Music

Artist Rights Alliance

Concord Music Publishing

Deezer

IMPALA

International Artist Organisation

International Confederation of Music Publishers

International Federation of Musicians

International Federation of the Phonographic Industry

Independent Music Publishers International Forum

Kobalt Music Publishing

Merlin

Musicnotes

National Music Publishers Association

Recording Academy

Recording Industry Association of America

Sony/ATV Music Publishing

Sony Music Entertainment

Spotify

Universal Music Group

Universal Music Publishing Group

Warner Music Group

Worldwide Independent Network