Music Canada’s Gold/Platinum Certification Program was launched in 1975 to celebrate milestone sales of music in Canada. With over 20,000 albums, singles, digital downloads, ringtones, and music videos certified over the Program’s history, it provides a unique historical timeline of popular music in Canada.
Over the years, the Certification criteria have evolved to reflect changing market conditions, ensuring the currency of the Program for the evolving music industry. For example, in 2008, Music Canada added the Digital Downloads category to address the new way that consumers were enjoying music. In September 2016, Music Canada launched the new Single Award, which combines on-demand streams with digital download and physical single sales. The launch of that Award coincided with new bilingual branding for the Program, including Gold/Platinum-specific Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook pages. In July 2017, Music Canada updated the Album Award guidelines to include Track Equivalent Album (TEA) and Stream Equivalent Album (SEA) units toward Certification.
Music Canada’s Online Database can be searched for Gold/Platinum Award recipients over the years.
Applications for Music Canada’s Gold/Platinum Certification Program are open to any recording artist who has released music that is available to Canadian music consumers. Applicants must meet all Certification requirements, as more fully detailed below in these Guidelines. These Guidelines may be updated from time to time at the discretion of Music Canada.
Click here to view requirements for each of the Gold/Platinum Certification levels.
To be Certified, the rights holder (the artist, label, or whomever it may be) must submit an application through Music Canada’s Gold/Platinum online portal. Before doing so, the Applicant must first set up an Application account by contacting [email protected].
If an Applicant has a question about the Program or the application process, they may contact [email protected] for information.
Music Canada recognizes the following Single Award tiers:
The following formula is used to determine a track’s total units for Certification:
Digital & Physical Single Sales
+ On-Demand Audio Stream Equivalents
= Total Units for Single Award Certification
Units for Single Awards are calculated as follows:
Music Canada recognizes the following Album Award tiers:
*Note that different tiers are applicable to albums released before May 1, 2008. For those tiers, please visit here.
The following formula is used to determine an album’s total units for Certification:
Digital & Physical Album Sales
+ TEA (Track Equivalent Album)
+ SEA (Stream Equivalent Album)
= Total Units for Album Award Certification
Units for Album Awards are calculated as follows:
Please note that as part of the review of each Application, Music Canada reserves the right to use an independent and verifiable third party source (of its choice) to verify the units claimed in the Application. In the event of a discrepancy between that third party verification and that claimed in the Application, Music Canada can conduct further investigations or elect to refuse the Application in its discretion, in order to maintain the integrity of the Program. If an Application is denied, Music Canada will contact the Applicant to explain the reasoning.
The Gold/Platinum Certification Program reserves the right in its sole discretion to decline certification or awarding of a plaque if it is of the view that doing so could bring the integrity, reputation, or values of the Program into disrepute.
As of April 1, 2021, the certification categories for Ringtone and Music DVD have been retired. While Music Canada no longer accepts new certification applications for these categories, all previously certified Ringtones and Music DVDs will maintain their certification status and continue to be celebrated on our website and public historical database. The Digital Download and CD Single categories were retired on September 16, 2016, and units sold are eligible under the Single Award guidelines.
The Award Plaques are designed by Music Canada’s exclusive suppliers (selected at its discretion) and contain official “Certified Canadian [Gold or Platinum]” ingots and album art. Following Certification, Award plaques can be ordered through Music Canada’s online portal. Pricing will depend on certification level, customization, and shipping costs. Please contact [email protected] for more information.