And the comedy of errors continues at Tidal.
After promising an extra, free month to trialling subscribers, Tidal has now mistakenly charged a number of credit cards held on file. A smattering of mishaps were shared with Digital Music News on Monday, including a charge on a DMN account itself. In response to an inquiry this morning, Tidal has yet to respond beyond their robo-responder:
“Due to high ticket volumes, we will try to respond to tickets in the order they were received. We appreciate your patience, and are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause.”
The extension was prompted by a decision by Kanye West to modify his latest album, The Life of Pablo, a Tidal exclusive. The rework included a number of updated tracks, and some lingering controversy over the approach. Accordingly, the streaming platform announced an extra, free trial month roughly one week ago, designed to perk continued interest the service.
The Kanye exclusive worked wonders, with one report pointing to a massive leap in trial users to 2.5 million. It’s unclear how many of those will convert into bona fide, paying subscribers, though Kanye certainly seems to be bumping both awareness and exposure to the Tidal platform.
But that success is highlighting an endless string of errors, not to mention complications for part-owner Kanye. Despite searing success, Pablo didn’t even make the charts, thanks to a refusal (or omission) by Tidal to report figures to chart-tracker Nielsen. That, coupled with endless technical snags, recently caused the platform to become a punching bag for Saturday Night Live, whose skit included guest Ariana Grande singing missing tracks to compensate for Tidal file errors.
But all joking aside, a more serious question is whether Tidal’s relentless chopping of top-level executives could be stirring internal chaos and subsequent operational errors. And, creating competitive problems with near-flawless platforms like Spotify, which just announced its 30 millionth paying subscriber.
Image by B Rosen, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC by 2.0).