Actually, she’s wrong: Metallica is making money off of Spotify. But Metallica structured their deal as a powerful, rights-owning label, not as an artist. And artists still don’t make anything from this platform. “My record isn’t on Spotify,” longtime indie Aimee Mann told Telegraph journalist David Gritten today, the latest penniless protester.
“People may be outraged, but artists don’t make money from Spotify.”
But are they (ie, music fans, artists, people) really that outraged? One question is whether a broader group of protesting artists will ever snowball, and, whether enough fans will ever actually care. Mann is now part of a holdout group that also includes heavy-sellers like Taylor Swift, Rihanna, Rush, and the Black Keys. Others, including Adele and Coldplay, have instituted long windowing delays based on similar financial concerns. But that’s still not a huge group.
February 28th, 2012: “Spotify Attacks Windowing as ‘Hostile,’ ‘Wrongheaded,’ & ‘Mind-Boggling…’“
And it doesn’t seem to be dissuading subscribers, curbing funding, or spooking Wall Street supporters like Goldman Sachs. Instead, Spotify is confidently plotting a dominant future, and telling artists to either get on board, or get lost in the shuffle. “Really, you risk being on the sidelines,” Spotify chief content officer Ken Park recently told Fast Company.
“You risk people not caring about your music.”
Which is, according to Mann, part of the bigger problem here. “I think people have a totally different relationship to music these days. There’s a feeling that it’s cheap, easy, disposable – and it’s free and it’s there.
“Then you start thinking it should always be free, and always be there.”