The Gaon Music Chart tabulates the relative weekly popularity of songs or albums in South Korea. It is compiled by the Korea Music Content Industry Association and sponsored by South Korea's Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, with an aim to create a national chart for Korea similar to the Billboard charts of the United States and the Oricon charts of Japan. It started tracking sales since the beginning of 2010. It was officially launched in February 2010 with a launching ceremony held on 23 February 2010 at the Westin Chosun hotel in Seoul. The launch also included a small awarding ceremony, which awarded girl groupGirls' Generation with top artist of January and boy bandSuper Junior with best album of 2009. Meanwhile, Hit single "We Fell In Love", performed by Jo Kwon of 2AM and Ga-in of Brown Eyed Girls, took the title of best weekly mobile ringtone.
It originally started in 2009 for monthly top single sales, and has expanded to contain weekly single and album sales. The charts are released each Thursday.
In February 2011, it published information on both online and offline album sales of 2010, including a detailed breakdown of online chart data and was the first time that off-line album sales was released since 2008 when the Music Industry Association of Korea stopped compiling data.
There are two primary charts: Gaon Albums Chart and Gaon Singles Chart. The charts lists domestic artists' sales, international artists' sales and a combined overall sales in weekly, monthly and year-end format.
The Gaon Singles Chart ranks best-selling non-physical, digital music sales listed as streaming content, downloads, background music, ringtones, karaoke and a combine overall singles charts, but excludes radio airplay and different versions of a song are listed as separate entries. It is complied from online data provided by web-based music providers: Olleh Music, genie, Melon, Mnet, Soribada, Cyworld, Naver Music, Daum Music and monkey3.