Kendrick Lamar, The Weeknd Earn Platinum Certifications Through New RIAA Changes
Congrats are in order for Kendrick Lamar and The Weeknd as both of their albums, To Pimp a Butterfly and Beauty Behind the Madness, respectively, earn platinum certifications thanks to the Recording Industry Association of America now counting streaming sales.
This new change follows after Rihanna broke streaming records last week with the release of her new album ANTI, which went platinum -- at least digitally -- thanks to Samsung buying 1 million copies and giving them out as free downloads to their customers. Physical copies of the "Work" singer's album will drop in retail stores on Friday (Feb. 5).
The rule change breaks down like this: On-demand video and audio streams will be calculated into the RIAA certifications, with 1,500 streams counting as the equivalent of ten track sales or one album sale. In addition, 150 streams will now equal one download, rather than the previous 100.
As of now, Big Sean's Dark Sky Paradise and K.Dot's TPAB are both platinum, while The Weeknd's BBTM is now double platinum and Michael Jackson's Thriller is 32 times platinum. Finally, Wale's 2011 album Ambition is gold at 500,000 copies.
While this may be exciting news for rappers and singers, Top Dawg Entertainment CEO Anthony “Top Dawg” Tiffith is not happy about the new changes. The music executive went on Twitter to voice his opinion on the matter.
“We don’t stand behind this RIAA BS,” he tweeted. “Ole [school] rules apply. One million albums sold is platinum. Until we reach that [number], save all the congrats. No cheat codes [to] platinum.”
What do you think? Does the new RIAA rules make it easier for artists to cheat their way to platinum? Or is this the proper way for albums to be counted? Tell us in the comments below.