Five years ago, if you were a major label artist and your record leaked ahead of its intended release date there was very little you could do outside of crying foul and complaining online. With time comes wisdom, however, and now the majors are starting to figure out new ways to curve the hurt that comes with big releases getting out early.
It may seem like the obvious move, but the latest development from labels facing major leaks is to turn around and legitimately release the album earlier than anticipated. The theory here is that everyone will hop online to find the leak and will be persuaded to instead purchase it if they see it is already available for sale. Small labels have been doing this for a few years now, but this week Kid Cudi became one of the first major artists to pull such a move in quite some time with his new effort, Indicud. The highly anticipated release was scheduled to hit shelves at the end of this month, but an early leak lead Cudi to put the album up a week early. This could have had an adverse effect on his sales given the marketing push for a different date, but instead Cudi has found success. Indicud is currently number 2 on the iTunes Hip Hop charts.
Whether or not this kind of last minute planning will work for others remains to be seen, but if it does prove viable on a large scale the music industry as a whole may soon start handling leaks in a similar fashion. Do you think this is a good move? Comment below and let us know.