Inside the Changes in Germany's Music Charts

Katy Perry performs during the semi final show of 'The Voice Of Germany' on December 13, 2013 in Berlin, Germany.

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The official German Top 100 singles and album charts are now being published one week earlier than before, under the title "Official German Charts." The charts are now being released immediately after the conclusion of the calculation period (Friday through Thursday), with the first publication scheduled for today (May 8).

"The official German charts are the beacon for the music business," Dr. Florian Drücke, managing director of the Federal Association of the Music Industry (BVMI), told Billboard.

The charts' new website (offiziellecharts.de) will act as a central source of up-to-date information on the charts and the music industry as a whole, with social media activities also getting an expansion via dedicated Facebook and Twitter pages. The service is available from today and will be supplemented with the hit lists of various streaming platforms.

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At present, the charts cover 14 different genres and formats ranging from classical music and German pop to streaming and music-download formats. The official German hip-hop chart was launched just a few weeks ago.

One purpose of the restructured chart system is to implement a uniform Top 20 system across all genres. The publication cycles have also been adjusted, with all genre charts to be updated on a weekly basis with the exception of classical music and jazz, which will continue to be released once a month.

The charts are published by BVMI in conjunction with market research institute GfK Entertainment in Nuremberg, which has been compiling the charts covering more than 90 percent of all music purchased for many years.

"The charts are based on sales and utilization data collected from 2,800 retailers in all sales channels. These include stationary retailers, e-commerce merchants, download portals and music streaming platforms”, Drücke said. The industry has been compiling the charts since 1977.

Says Tom Bohne, president of Music Universal Music GmbH: "The new Official German Charts constitute a major evolutionary step forward. Never before in the history of the music industry has there been such a comprehensive, diversified and immediate view of music consumption in Germany. The Federal Association of the Music Industry, GfK Entertainment and all the other participating companies and partners have set themselves the goal of establishing the Official German Charts as the only relevant, universally applicable and internationally comparable benchmark of success in music business."