HomeTop StoriesBreaking: Apple Agrees to Pay All Artist Royalties During Free Trials… Paul Resnikoff June 21, 201569It started with a leaked contract on DMN, and culminated with a high-profile pullout from Taylor Swift. Now, the biggest corporation in the world caving…(Eddy Cue = Apple senior vice president of Internet Software and Services) 69 Responses Anonymous June 21, 2015 Conspiracy theory:Taylor Swift received a nice fat check back in September/October 2014, followed by her pulling content from Spotify, and what we’ve just witnessed is the final step in a well orchestrated PR campaign. Bad, bad, Apple – Oh you’re our hero!To quote Miss Swift’s post:“I hope that soon I can join them in the progression towards a streaming model that seems fair to those who create this music. I think this could be the platform that gets it right.”How does a company get it right when they are copying EXACTLY the same business model and price points? Artists can’t be better off with a copycat.It would have been more genuine if Apple had responded to everyone else who complained. Goes to show that independents don’t matter. Fuck Apple! June 21, 2015 Your conspiracy theory is beyond ridiculous, no company would do that to itself.Apple is now industry enemy #2 — extremely close behind Google — and it’ll never be able to repair the damage. Anonymous June 22, 2015 Some Spotify employees are really pissed off today… Anonymous June 21, 2015 Wait, let me guess: you work for either Google or Spotify. Or both.It must suck to watch your company circle the toilet bowl before your very eyes tonight.Apple listens to artists. Anonymous June 21, 2015 “Apple listens to artists”No, Apple listens to the press. Edward Jennings June 22, 2015 Taylor Swift is not with the press. She is a music artist. Anonymous June 22, 2015 Apple doesn’t listen to Ms. Swift.Apple listens when New York Times print Ms. Swift’s letter. Anonymous June 22, 2015 More like they listen to the millions of fans who would follow Swift off a cliff if it meant they could catch a glimpse of her. If Swift’s not happy, those fans are not happy. And those fans buy Apple products. jdrefahl June 22, 2015 Do you really think Taylor Swift is writing these position papers? Seriously?!?! Anonymous June 22, 2015 “Hopefully that’s the start of a trend and a message to all the other platforms that rely on content from artists”Yes!But we need to simplify the following algo and decrease the time it takes to go from a to g:a) Big Tech rapes artists b) Artists protest c) Indie labels protest d) DMN and Hypebot leak embarrassing documents e) Embarrassing documents and indie protests reach the music press f) Taylor Swift steps in g) New York Times brings the story h) Big Tech company apologizes for rape — didn’t mean it, will never do it again.What we need is a user-friendly site where we can systematize and organize a SWIFT and unified response to next week’s rape. Troglite June 22, 2015 +1Unfortunately, DMN doesn’t appear to be that site (at least not yet). Sarah June 22, 2015 You know … if we just get rid of (a), then we don’t need the rest of the steps at all…. Truancy June 21, 2015 This whole operation reeks of PR STUNT. Artists are not relieved, Apple, we’re pissed you think our livelihood is a joke. You and Taylor Swift can flex all you want….I hope the next digital medium kicks your ass.Apple: “Well we ignored everyone else that was concerned and complained and actually needed to get paid, but when Taylor voiced her opinion, we flipped our entire introductory model…”mentirosa. Fuck Apple! June 21, 2015 “This whole operation reeks of PR STUNT”Because we really used to hate Apple, but now we definitely love them, eh?“Artists are not relieved, Apple, we’re pissed you think our livelihood is a joke. […] I hope the next digital medium kicks your ass.Apple: “Well we ignored everyone else that was concerned and complained and actually needed to get paid, but when Taylor voiced her opinion, we flipped our entire introductory model…””+1 PsyhoMedia X June 22, 2015 With 192 billion of cash sitting in Apple’s vault they don’t need to be giving artist property away for free . They gave my shit away with a free Pepsi–Access to a free track under the top winner and didn’t even have my permission: Fuck what that stupid ass Jew told you stink cracker bastards ! Both Apple and Pepsi are liable for the theft of my property and I want both of those fat asses ! pbody June 21, 2015 how much? or how about saying ‘paid fairly’? – hopefully Taylor’s response Anonymous June 21, 2015 APPLE 0 – SWIFT 1 GO TO HELL, APPLE! June 21, 2015 Go to hell, Apple! Anonymous June 21, 2015 Cue’s explanation is the lamest ever:“When I woke up this morning and saw what Taylor had written, it really solidified that we needed a change. And so that’s why we decide we will now pay artists during the trial period.”In other words:Without Taylor Swift, Apple would have screwed us all.Cue added that Ms. Swift was “very thankful and excited to see how QUICK we responded”.Quick!I’m not lying to you, that’s the word he used. After all this time… Paul Resnikoff June 21, 2015 Without Taylor Swift, Apple would have screwed us all.I don’t think so; it was already in motion. Swift just created extreme urgency in the matter. But over the weekend, speaking to several sources close this, I learned that Apple was planning on making the shift, and frankly was hoping for something quieter than this. Anonymous June 21, 2015 According to Cue, Swift was the deciding factor:“When I woke up this morning and saw what Taylor had written, it really solidified that we needed a change. And so that’s why we decide we will now pay artists during the trial period.” Paul Resnikoff June 21, 2015 Yeah, of course. Swift made a big stink, it was an oil spill in terms of bad publicity. So Apple acted really fast to plug the leak.But this was already in motion, Apple was already planning to give up its gratis, no royalty free trial proposal. No indies were going to participate, and they have a launch date June 30th. Anonymous June 21, 2015 Well… whatever happened in Cupertino, you’re as responsible as anyone.So, thank you! Anonymous June 22, 2015 Paul, I wonder if there is a catch: Last week, Apple offered to pay a few % more than Spotify. But is that offer still good?Here’s what Cue said today:“We’ve been hearing a lot of concern from indie artists about not getting paid during the three-month trial period, which was never our intent. We never looked at it as not paying them. We had originally negotiated these deals based on paying them a higher royalty rate on an ongoing basis to compensate for this brief time. But when I woke up this morning and saw what Taylor had written”So are they just going to reduce that rate now? Paul Resnikoff June 22, 2015 I’m asking around, not sure yet. Sarah June 22, 2015 Nice catch. That is curious phrasing.If Apple’s smart, Apple will not change what they “originally negotiated” at all, simply pay out for the 3 months in addition to the (slightly) higher royalty. Whawha June 22, 2015 “So are they just going to reduce that rate now?” According to Billboard who got an interview with E.Cue, no, they will maintain the rate. It was still a dumb move to start with, but at least they do repair their errors , unlike other companies. Anonymous June 21, 2015 Top 5 Enemies:1) Google 2) Apple (post Jobs) 3) Spotify 4) ISPs 5) Pirate Bay Anonymous June 22, 2015 Whatever happened to the evil empire that was Micro$oft? Anonymous June 22, 2015 The opposite of what happened to Apple. Edward Jennings June 22, 2015 I don’t consider Microsoft a player in the digital music business. They can do much better than X-Box Music. They don’t leverage their software clout in this category. Ironic when they are a Cloud first, Mobile first company and music is imperative on both. There is something... June 22, 2015 I think all Apple haters should put their money where their mouth is and just remove all their music from iTunes. Why use a service from a company you hate ? Anonymous June 22, 2015 “I think all Apple haters should put their money where their mouth is and just remove all their music from iTunes”Good suggestion!Bandcamp’s cut is just 10-15% — compared to Apple’s 30%. Bandcamp also offers considerably more options and flexibility (pricing, email lists, links to social media, merchandising, etc.).And Bandcamp doesn’t force you to work for free! Compare to iTunes: Long previews and iTunes Radio are mandatory (Beats1 may be mandatory too, but that’s next week’s scandal). Anonymous June 22, 2015 “And Bandcamp doesn’t force you to work for free! Compare to iTunes: Long previews and iTunes Radio are mandatory”i love bandcamp, but you”re wrong. Full length previews of your tracks is mandatory on Bandcamp, unless you pay a $10 option per month. Anonymous June 22, 2015 “unless you pay a $10 option per month”Oh wow, that just ruins everything. 🙁Seriously, fellow Anonymous — you don’t even have to pay an aggregator, what’s $10 a month? Ray June 22, 2015 CD Baby has a free option that allows you to just put digital tracks on their site. You have the option of a 30 second preview or full streaming. They take 15% for downloads that sign up for the free service. Anonymous June 22, 2015 “They take 15% for downloads”…which is just plain ridiculous. Anonymous June 22, 2015 Bandcamp also takes 15% cut on downloads. Anonymous June 22, 2015 http://bit.ly/1K60Tyg jeffserrano June 22, 2015 the merlin indies will still bitch. they are not getting advances and that is what the complaining is really about. mark my words. Anonymous June 22, 2015 Plus, if Apple pays artists during free trials now, the royalty rate will probably be reduced. Here’s what Cue said today:“We’ve been hearing a lot of concern from indie artists about not getting paid during the three-month trial period, which was never our intent. We never looked at it as not paying them. We had originally negotiated these deals based on paying them a higher royalty rate on an ongoing basis to compensate for this brief time. But when I woke up this morning and saw what Taylor had written”Aside from that, Apple Music is going to cannibalize iTunes like there’s no tomorrow… DAn June 23, 2015 Merlin has no contractual relationship with iTunes – never has never will. Anonymous June 22, 2015 So can we expect 1989 on the June 30th launch? Didn’t think so. Anonymous June 22, 2015 So? It’s her album, she can do whatever she wants with it.Hate artists much? Anonymous June 22, 2015 Not at all. But I don’t like people who blame others to justify their own unpopular actions. She blamed Apple’s 3 month unpaid trial for the reason she is withholding 1989. That she was standing up for the little guy and for what was right. We all know that’s not true. She’s withholding it because that’s what she does. She wants the most money she can get. It has nothing to do with helping anyone else. Now Apple has caved and she has no excuse for not releasing 1989. But it is highly unlikely we will see 1989 on June 30th. Anonymous June 22, 2015 Oh shut up, you ridiculous Google stooge. Anonymous June 22, 2015 You really need better insults if you think calling someone a stooge for one of the most innovative and highly regarded companies of all time is an insult. DavidB June 22, 2015 I don’t buy the idea that it was all a conspiracy from the outset, but I wouldn’t rule out the possibility that Apple had prior knowledge of Taylor Swift’s blog, and were happy to take the opportunity to dig themselves out of a hole with an appearance of good grace. Yep June 22, 2015 The math…Spotify premium does about 30 billion paid streams a quarter right now. Apple Music is FREE, so lets say 10 x as many streams from the service in Q3. EVEN Apple will find that a tough bill to pay. Even if they go as low as $0.005 per stream, that’s 840 million dollars, for 3 months, for labels. From 0 income, and most likely a massive PR bill.And if the rate is lower than that, Label will withdraw content for sure. There is something... June 22, 2015 And what will be Spotify per stream payout during their 0.99 premium offer ? Anonymous June 22, 2015 Your “math” is inane.You’re assuming Apple will have the exact same amount of users as Spotify the first 3 months. It won’t. Anonymous June 22, 2015 Tweet of the day:“I just played a gig inside a giant owl and my girl just changed the entire music industry what a day”SOURCE: Calvin Harris, Twitter There is something... June 22, 2015 Changing the entire music industry ? Ah ah, sorry but no…If you really think about it, nothing is changing… But it makes people talk. It’s a very good PR for TS, and not a so bad one for Apple Music (and nobody is speaking about Tidal anymore). The “industry” itself will be about the same than it was because people are moving to streaming whatever TS is saying or not. pahahahahaha June 22, 2015 ‘It started with a leaked contract on DMN….’really? REALLY?? you are trying to claim some credit in this shambles???? Anonymous June 22, 2015 “you are trying to claim some credit in this shambles?”Why wouldn’t he? A lot of articles link to DMN stories. [email protected] June 22, 2015 I dreamed I saw a joust between Anonymi. Nobody could tell who won. Sarah June 22, 2015 🙂 lol channeledbymodem June 22, 2015 I’m sure I’m missing something since this was not brought up, but surely Apple is paying labels, not artists and labels are still screwing artists, are they not? So how does Apple agreeing to pay labels even more money help artists? Sincere question; I’m not in the business. Anonymous June 22, 2015 Labels pay in turn the artists they signed, according to whatever percentage is in their contract. Also some artists are self- distributed on iTunes, so Apple pays them directly. It’s the same in all stores. MarkH June 22, 2015 So 3 months of streaming payouts is a big deal now? I thought streaming revenue was crap. Anonymous June 22, 2015 Good point! GGG June 22, 2015 Well sure, the actual payouts might still be an issue, but at least the principle of the most valuable company in the world not paying out anything is fixed. One step at a time. Willis June 22, 2015 Hooray! Taylor Swift fixed the world…again. superduper June 22, 2015 Sure, they’re paying something, but will it be enough to replace iTunes sales, keeping in mind that the payouts are only marginally higher than 0? Just Say No To Streaming June 22, 2015 The 3 months doesn’t matter. How many downloads (and yes they are downloads when they are offline cached) do you have to sell to make 1 US $ ?The majors, Crapify, Apple just ended any chance of making money from recorded music.And they did it because they can skim off the top of ever single thing ever recorded and have zero outlay. Lyle David Pierce III June 23, 2015 In general, rather than describing songs that are cached offline as “downloads,” I think those songs are more properly defined as copies (duplicate copies to be more precise), hence, the necessity of streaming services such as Apple Music and Beats 1 radio obtaining the prior informed consent and authorization of those rights holders before duplicating and performing the same – savvy?http://www.soundexchange.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/2014-11-14-Order-on-Summary-Judgment-Flo-and-Eddie-v-Sirius-XM-SDNY.pdf Lyle David Pierce III June 24, 2015 On the other hand, Harper & Row v. Nation Enterprises makes clear that, among other things, “The [pre-existing common law] right of first publication encompasses NOT ONLY THE CHOICE WHETHER TO PUBLISH AT ALL, but also the choices of when, where, and in what form first to publish a work.” [Emphasis mine.]The fact that a work is unpublished is a critical element of its “nature.” [Citations omitted.]Thus, the necessity of streaming services such as Apple Music and Beats 1 radio obtaining the prior informed consent and authorization of those rights holders before publishing the same – savvy? It gets worse June 23, 2015 …If the user is part of iCloud, the streams do not count as “Royalty Bearing”. Therefore you will get nothing since most Apple users are now using iCloud. Just Say No To Streaming June 23, 2015 Well, who cares anyway? I mean when they ‘pay’ it’s a fraction of a penny anyway.I have 32 albums on itunes, and they are not going to Apple Music.