(Hypebot) — YouTube paid the music industry more than $4 billion during the 12 months that ended in March of 2021.
YouTube is often criticized for lower-than-Spotify payments for music used in both official and user-generated ad-supported videos.
But in a reminder of just how large that pool of revenue has become, YouTube noted that of the total $4 billion paid out over the last 12 months, 30% or $1.2 billion came via User Generated Content (UGC).
The paid premium side of YouTube also grew, adding more paid members in Q1 ’21 than any quarter in its history. No specific subscriber numbers were offered.
Direct-to fan grows
YouTube is continuing to add direct-to-fan monetization options including ticketing, merch, memberships, paid digital goods, and virtual ticketed events. BLACKPINK’s paid live stream – THE SHOW – sold nearly 280,000 channel memberships across 81 countries and helped the group earn 2.7 million new subscribers to their official artist channel, according to YouTube.
“As a visual-audio platform, our goal is to become the leading revenue generator for the music industry and to help artists around the world build a career making music,” said YouTube exec Lyor Cohen “We are uniquely positioned to achieve this goal because YouTube monetizes the end-to-end music experience globally.”