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-- In light of yesterday's news that music sales have been in the increase in Sweden, it's worth looking at the country's Internet traffic over the last 12 months. As these graphs show, traffic dropped sharply in early April and has steadily increased since then. Current traffic levels, however, currently exceed those seen in March. Sweden's tough anti-piracy law was implemented in early April. The Pirate Bay lost its court case the same month. If the new law sparked sales and reduced Internet traffic, then sales could very well have fallen as traffic has resumed. Time will tell. At the very least, the news of Sweden's sales spike is timed well for content owners who seek similar laws in other countries. (Internet traffic graphs, via Ars Technica)

-- has gained nearly one million users through its integration with Microsoft's Xbox. That's a big gain in just once week - joined the Xbox on November 17. CBS says Xbox users have already streamed 120 million minutes of music. Only paying Xbox members get access to It goes to show that partnerships with hardware and service companies will be integral in the growth of music streaming services. For a video of on Xbox, click here. (paidContent)

-- Music marketers should read the results of a recent study by market strategy and research firm Decitica that looks at four consumers groups emerging from the recession: steadfast frugalists (20% of American consumers), involuntary penny-pinchers (29%), pragmatic spenders (29%) and apathetic materialists (22%). Many consumers have taken on new habits during the recession - some of them long-lasting habits. They are going to be more price-sensitive than in the past. That could provide a good impetus for consumer adoption of new, inexpensive music services. Or it could signal the need for a lower, easy-to-remember price for some (definitely not all) digital albums. It worked for Subway and its $5 foot-long campaign.

-- SXSW has released the names of some of the bands that will play the 2010 festival. (

-- Warner Music Group and Sony Corp. music-publishing units dropped a copyright-infringement lawsuit against XM Satellite Radio Holdings, according to Bloomberg. The suit was over XM’s Pioneer Inno portable satellite radio which allows XM listeners to record and store songs. The companies’ joint request to dismiss the claims was approved yesterday by U.S. District Judge in New York. A settlement with EMI Music Publishing and EMI Music Group came in June 2008. (Bloomberg)

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