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People Still Buy Music: Vinyl and digital sales are up even as overall music sales are down

Music industry doomsayers, get the handmade signs ready: Album sales for 2012 are down 4.4 percent compared to this time last year. Though there have been individual pockets of good news in the music business this year for British folk artists and Linkin Park, the broader outlook for the industry still seems fairly poor.

Looking for a bright spot in the sales decline? Check out the type of albums being sold. Most of the decline in sales has come from CDs, which have sold only 129.7 million units compared to 151.6 million at this time in 2011. But digital downloads are up 15.3 percent to 85.5 million units, which means the kids must still be buying music, right?


And what's more, totally justified music snobbery also seems to be making a comeback, as vinyl sales are up 16.3 percent. (Except that vinyl still makes up only 1.5 percent of all album sales.)

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