On May 15, a long-awaited change debuted on the ARIA Albums chart, with qualifying on-demand streams contributing to the Album charts result. Already the case on the Singles chart, the change was designed to ensure that a small number of standout singles don’t artificially inflate the performance of their associated album.

However, according to Andrew Stone (Head of Chugg Music, AIR Board member, manager of Sheppard, Megan Washington, The Griswolds and others), the chart update has made it harder than ever for local artists to place in the upper echelon of the chart.

Stone’s op-ed below was transcribed from an interview. It has been edited for clarity.

The effect on Australian artists was immediate

Since the swap over to streaming hit the ARIA charts on May 15, there hasn’t been a #1 album from an Australian artist.

Bliss N Eso took the last one, and that was on May 8, a week before the change, and there was four this year before that. There hasn’t been a #1 Australian single this year and we’re in August already – there were two last year. It was Flume and The Veronicas in 2016, and there was Grace, Conrad Sewell and Delta Goodrem in 2015.

From an independent point of view, I know that there was a conversation happening amongst the ARIA people I would imagine, deciding whether to permit streaming numbers in the ARIA charts. One side of the argument, I suppose, is of course that they should permit it, because it reflects consumption and that’s what people are consuming – so let’s reflect that.