Journal of Cultural Economics

, Volume 38, Issue 4, pp 315–330 | Cite as

On the complementarity between online and offline music consumption: the case of free streaming

  • Godefroy Dang Nguyen
  • Sylvain Dejean
  • François Moreau
Original Article


From a representative survey of 2,000 individuals, we study whether consumption of music through streaming services, like Spotify or YouTube, is a substitute or a complement to physical music consumption modes, such as CDs and live music. Controlling for the taste for music, various socio-demographic characteristics and the usual determinants of music consumption either offline (radio, TV, friends/relatives) or online (online recommendations, social networks), our results show that free music streaming (where the consumer does not possess the music but only has access to it) has no significant effect on CD sales and affects positively live music attendance, but only for national or international artists who are more likely to be available on streaming services.


Music consumption Streaming Substitutability 

JEL Classification

L2 L86 Z1 



We thank two anonymous reviewers as well as the participants at the 2012 ACEI Conference and the 10th ZEW Conference on the Economics of Information and Communication Technologies for their comments and suggestions.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Godefroy Dang Nguyen
    • 1
  • Sylvain Dejean
    • 1
  • François Moreau
    • 2
  1. 1.Telecom Bretagne, M@rsouin, Technopôle Brest-IroiseBrest Cedex 3France
  2. 2.CEPN (UMR CNRS 7234) and LABEX ICCAUniversité Paris 13VilletaneuseFrance

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