UMG’s DIY distribution service Spinnup is going invite-only. Musicians without invites have two months to find a new distributor.
A message posted to the Spinnup website reads,” Spinnup is changing.” The service launched in 2013 in Sweden before going global in 2016. Spinnup, which is owned by Universal Music Group, allowed artists to distribute their music to major streaming platforms for a flat fee while keeping 100% of their royalties and ownership. During the pandemic, Spinnup waived fees for a single-track upload. Spinnup has been an artist discovery service, with at least 80 getting upstreamed into UMG.
Spinnup artists received an email on May 19th announcing the new changes and the invite-only direction.
Spinnup says on July 19th, the platform is “changing from an open DIY music distribution service to a curated artist discovery and distribution platform. This means we will be reducing the number of artists on the platform as we move into this new chapter,” the email reads.
“Artists who are leaving Spinnup are being asked to takedown their releases and transfer to a new distributor by July 12, 2022,” the Spinnup FAQ further elaborates about the changes. “After that date we will begin taking down any remaining live releases from departing artists.”
The FAQ also explains that artists on the Spinnup platform will receive an invite or be approached by Spinnup staff. “Invitations will be sent to artists who are in contact with or have been approached by the Spinnup team or any other affiliates within Universal Music Group,” it reads. “We ask that you please don’t contact our support team or message us on social media asking for an invitation.”
More and more music distribution platforms that formerly offered DIY services are pivoting away from it. In 2019, Los Angeles-based Stem pivoted away from DIY distribution. Now Stem curates the artists it works with, choosing them from a select number of VIPs from an online membership application system. It’s a system that resembles AWAL or Create Music Group.