business news in context, analysis with attitude

In Minnesota, the Star Tribune reports on how Best Buy, after a decade in which the sales of compact discs have been in “freefall,” has decided to put all of the CDs it has left in the bargain bin. For the most part, the story says, the discs are from artists like “Lynyrd Skynyrd, the Who, Cat Stevens, Billy Ocean, Lionel Richie — all a nod to the aging demographics of those who still buy them.”

In fact, the story says, Best Buy now displays and sells more iTunes cards than it does CDs. “Best Buy is also in the process of removing CDs altogether from its website,” the Star Tribune writes. “It only has a handful of audio systems with a CD player left in stores as streaming takes over the music business.”

The story goes on: “Target, too, is cutting back on its CD selection. The Minneapolis-based retailer still sells new releases, but in October 2016 it pulled back on the number of catalog, or previously released, CDs it carries from about 300 to 100.

“Target is in the midst of an aggressive push to modernize hundreds of its stores. As stores are remodeled, the space for CDs, especially those catalog titles, will be further squeezed, said Joshua Thomas, a company spokesman.”

And there are some music stores - smaller, more niche-oriented businesses - that still are selling plenty of CDs; the story references a Minneapolis store called the Electric Fetus, where CDs still account for half of sales.

The other half? Vinyl records, which have been seeing a resurgence among dedicated audiophiles.
KC's View:
I can’t even remember the last CD I bought. I’m not surprised by this , but I also know that this technology/cultural change is creating collateral damage … and it so happens that this is the subject of Thursday’s FaceTime with the Content Guy.

So stay tuned.