(Hypebot) — While frustration with Spotify and other streaming platforms is nothing new in the music biz, movement by two leading industry groups could hint at the possibility of change.
Guest post by James Shotwell of Haulix
Complaints about streaming are as old as the medium itself, but two leading industry groups have recently taken steps to demand change.
How much is a song worth, and who should pay the bill? Those two questions are at the heart of the streaming debate, which has persisted since the medium rose to popularity at the dawn of the new millennium. Some believe every song is worth at least a dollar and that every person who enjoys the song should pay for access. Others believe music should be freely available to all. Somewhere in the middle is where the vast majority of services and offerings fall, but the arguments for both sides rage on.
Spotify, the world’s most significant music streaming platform, is most often criticized for its treatment of musicians. While major labels can negotiate unique royalty rates, the vast majority of musicians are left to fight over fractions of pennies that rarely add up to enough to cover their expenses. The average stream on the platform earns musicians $0.0038, and some earn even less.
Recently, two industry professional groups from different continents took steps to make their demands for fair compensation heard. The Union of Musicians And Allied Workers, a community of creatives from the United States, launched a petition seeking a flat-rate royalty of $0.01 per stream. Another, The European Music Managers Alliance, developed a list of four reforms they feel the industry needs to implement ASAP.
In the latest Music Biz episode, host James Shotwell breaks down the cause of the groups’ concerns and their demands. He also investigates the value of each request and weighs the likelihood that anything comes from these actions.
You can find more information on Spotify’s recent changes and how the industry is responding by subscribing to our YouTube Channel.
James Shotwell is the Director of Customer Engagement at Haulix and host of the company’s podcast, Inside Music. He is also a public speaker known for promoting careers in the entertainment industry, as well as an entertainment journalist with over a decade of experience. His bylines include Rolling Stone, Alternative Press, Substream Magazine, Nu Sound, and Under The Gun Review, among other popular outlets.