Slacker introduces music charts based on how listeners interact with streaming music

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Issue Date: 
Jun 6 2013 - 12:05pm

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Online radio/on-demand music service Slacker has launched what it calls a better and more advanced way to measure how listeners engage with the music they're streaming.

Billboard charts, long the industry's go-to for measuring song popularity, until recently were based solely on sales of music. Other charts evolved to reflect only broadcast radio play. But today, music listeners don't buy as much music as they used to, nor do they listen solely to AM/FM for music -- instead streaming it from on-demand sources or Internet radio. The Slacker EQ Score reflects a song's popularity based on "millions of data points" every week, "in a world where access to music is quickly trumping ownership," as the company describes it. 

Each song is give a score from 1-100, based on specific positive and negative actions listeners take when hearing the song, which include: "Starts" (the number of times a song was started on Slacker), "Completes" (the number of times a song was listened to in its entirety), "Hearts" (the number of times a user "hearts" a track, requesting to hear it more frequently), plus "Shares" on social media, "Skips," Station changes during a song or "Bans" the song or artist.

Weekly charts will rank the 40 "most engaging songs" from across the service (from which Slacker has also generated a listenable online radio station), plus six genre-specific rankings for Pop, Rock, Country, Hip Hop/R&B, Alternative/Indie and Electronic/Dance. Slacker will publish the rankings every Thursday beginning today.

Alternative rock band Imagine Dragons topped Slacker's inaugural Top 40 chart with their song "Radioactive." Pop artists Justin Timberlake and Icona Pop and Country artists Randy Houser and Easton Corbin were also in the top five. See this week's charts and read more in Slacker's blog here. You can see the full-size Slacker image here.

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