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Spotify

ISLANDS IN THE STREAM: Is Spotify’s recent PR push—ostensibly in support of their Spotify Artists site with tools for artists and managers—intended to throw the majors under the bus? The streaming service says it’s paid out “$1 Billion USD in royalties to date, $500 million of which were paid in 2013 alone” to rights holders, then goes on to address “skepticism” from artists (such as Pink Floyd and Radiohead) who’ve pulled their music. The implicit upshot? We pay the music companies 70% of all streaming monies, so if you’re not getting paid, take it up with them. Though it revealed that it pays between $0.006 and $0.0084 per stream (calculated based on an artist’s percentage of total music streamed), Spotify’s “transparency” is still rather murky. One thing, though, is clear: The top artists and hits make up the lion’s share of all streaming revenue. Without them, Spotify would have virtually no listeners.  And with Beats Music launching in January, a much more label-friendly streamery will be in the marketplace. (12/9p)

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