Actions and events often have unintended consequences, and music exclusives and windowing are proving to have their share of both; as proven by consumer behavior since Prince's untimely death and Beyoncé's surprise Saturday release.
Since Prince's untimely death and Beyoncé s surprise album release, tens of thousands of copies of their albums have been download illegally. And in both cases, planned scarcity likely exacerbated the surge.
On the day after his death more than 100,000 people illegally downloaded Prince music on a single site, KickassTorrents, according to TorrentFreak.
Beyonce's surprise release "Leomonade" drove a similar flurry of illegal activity. It pushed Prince out of the number one spot on KickasssTorrents occupies #1 and #4 on the Pirate Bay. There Prince still holds 3 slots in the Top 10.
The industry beneficiary of fan interest in Prince and Beyoncé is unquestionably TIDAL, which holds exclusive streaming rights to both artists.
Recent exclusives, including Kanye West, and Prince's passing had helped push Tidal's iOS app to #3 behind Spotify and Pandora. But at the height of Beyoncé induced frenzy, it became the top grossing music app on iTunes. By mid-day Monday, as the Beyonce release became available for download elsewhere, TIDAL was back at # 3 on the App Annie charts.