After being out for less than a week, Jay-Z's latest album, "4:44," has already been certified platinum by the RIAA (Record Industry Association of America). Since its release, the album has been making headlines for a variety of reasons, including lyrical references to his feud with Kanye West, to his mother's sexuality, and to his disdain for rappers who flash their money on social media.

"4:44" is currently a Tidal exclusive. However, it's been announced that there are plans to make the album available on other platforms in the near future.

A string of platinum releases

This isn't the first time one of JAY-Z's albums has gone platinum in such a short amount of time. Back in 2013, with the release of his album "Magna Carta... Holy Grail," the rapper sold over a million digital copies of the album to Samsung, who then gave vouchers to customers, allowing them to download it for free.

According to Billboard, the RIAA even changed their rules regarding platinum certification and allowed the album's Samsung sales to count as traditional sales, effectively allowing the album to go platinum after only one day of being on the market.

Rihanna, another one of JAY-Z's TIDAL copartners, did the same thing in 2016 when she also partnered with Samsung and gave away free downloads of her album "ANTI" to fans on the night of its release. The album was accidentally leaked a few hours before its official release; however, according to Grace Kim, TIDAL’s Director of Marketing, over 1.4 million copies were still legally downloaded in less than 24 hours — 15 to be exact.

The album ["ANTI"], which remained a TIDAL exclusive for its first week, was also streamed more than 13 million times on the night of its release, making it another huge success for the music streaming service — Beyoncé's "Lemonade," and Kanye West's "The Life of Pablo" being others. However, in Rihanna's case, her album was only certified platinum by the RIAA, but not by Billboard and Nielsen.

RIAA controversy

Not everyone is impressed with the rapper's tactics.

Plenty of fans and critics have taken to social media and made it clear that they don't consider this, or any other past example of it, a legitimate accomplishment. Many of them view it as a form of statistical inflation, where a business lies about or skews its numbers in order to make itself seem more successful than it actually is.

While this is up for debate, it's no secret that TIDAL's numbers aren't as high as other services, such as Spotify and Apple Music.

This has led music industry analysts to question whether or not the "4:44" album is anything more than a marketing product for TIDAL.

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