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IRVING ON VALUE OF YOUTUBE TO BIZ: "NONE"

"My report about the ‘Value of YouTube to the Music Industry’ would be really brief because I can summarize the benefit of YouTube to artists in a word: none,” says Irving Azoff, responding to a controversial U.K. study that has been the subject of much ink since its debut earlier this month. Azoff disputes numerous claims in the paper, prepared for YouTube parent Google by consultancy RBB Economics.

"They say without YouTube, users would look for sites that paid even less for music," Azoff adds. "I say good luck finding services that benefit so greatly from music and pay so little. Google’s Alphabet has a market cap of $660 billion, and YouTube itself is worth somewhere north of $90 billion—a value it acquired, in large part, on the backs of music artists. But they’d rather spend their money on dishonest studies to justify their measly payments than offer creators what they deserve for the use of their work."

"YouTube is worth somewhere north of $90 billion... But they’d rather spend their money on dishonest studies to justify their measly payments than offer creators what they deserve."

"The truth is that, despite having to compete with services like YouTube who hide behind outdated, safe harbor protections, legitimate services like Spotify and Apple Music are attracting more subscribers than ever" Azoff continues. "If YouTube had the same level of commitment, their subscription service would be more than a head fake—and they’d be working hard, like Spotify does, to convert users to the paid tier for unlimited music. Maybe Google should do a study on that."

"The music community isn’t fooled and continues to defend the value of what we cultivate,” he declares. “People are taking action—whether that means speaking out, legislation, litigation, brand boycotts or all of the above—until Google does the right thing."

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