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The truth about Music Streamers?

Posted By: Brian Austin Whitney

The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/05/17 06:19 PM

Hi Folks,

I've been quiet of late for several reasons, but one thing I must share with you guys. Everyone knows that something is inherently unfair about digital streaming rates to artists. I've been told first hand directly from someone involved in it all how the scam is working. The rates are artificially low because in exchange for that, the labels are being given large (and progressively growing) ownership %'s in exchange for keeping special private negotiated super low rates so that the music creators get royally screwed and the format survives long enough for the founders/management of the streamers to get rich while eventually turning over the keys to the labels or a subsidiary of their small handful of parent companies. According to my source he named the "top" streamer as the most guilty and folks, he KNOWS what he is talking about.

I am cautiously researching and looking for more sources to confirm this, but as I said, this is someone who is positioned to know the truth. I am just running a free org for mostly independent artists and songwriters, but I have also spoken to some label artists among our members who are outraged by what I have learned.

I suspected some insider deals, but had no idea exactly how they were doing it. Now I know. I hope to be able to source enough witnesses to publish the names and practices, but for now, that's all the details I can share. Is anyone surprised? Big business is as corrupt as big politics and all of us are on the outside looking in. And it is getting worse and worse and the fairness gap is growing worse by the day.

Other than that, did you enjoy the play Mrs. Lincoln...

Brian
Posted By: Barry David Butler

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/05/17 07:15 PM

SO Sad as without the creators of ART in our Society it will crumble into a Black & White Re Run World. How long will all the creators just take this like a punching bag and start punching back. What can we do?
Posted By: MidniteBob

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/05/17 09:03 PM

Originally Posted by Brian Austin Whitney
Hi Folks,

Other than that, did you enjoy the play Mrs. Lincoln...

Brian


...And Mary Todd Lincoln replied: I thought the play was going fine until it suddenly ended half way through the second act, so I turned to my husband to ask if he knew what was going on, but he gave me no response."

Too soon??

Midnite
Posted By: MidniteBob

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/05/17 09:05 PM

But seriously, Brian, thank you for the information and for all that you do!

I'm looking forward to the responses and discussions about this.

Midnite
Posted By: Douglas Murphy

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/06/17 10:26 AM

Please keep us up to date.

Douglas
Posted By: Everett Adams

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/06/17 11:43 AM

Doesn't surprise me at all. Big business has always screwed the little man, and as they get bigger and bigger by swallowing up and squeezing out the smaller competition, it will get worst, as there will be too much power in too few hands.
Posted By: Brian Austin Whitney

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/06/17 12:40 PM

Well, people don't realize how big a deal this is. It explains a lot as well. Even with ridiculously low rates (again, not the statutory rates, but a super sweet special deal where they could single out individuals or classes of artists to treat differently at a whim based on internal deals and secret agreements. The paperwork is so obtuse and with your own label and publisher in on it, you have little chance of getting to the truth during any level of audit you manage to force, if you can at all. There are so many obvious conflicts of interest when a few companies own most of the music, most of the publishing, all of the promotional money and all of the power, and now have these secret deals to own the distribution and "play" (remember, radio is failing and no one is buying anything anymore.. it's all in the hands of these mega giant corporations who own eac and every step of the process from the artist having an idea to the consumer hearing in their ear. They even make the equipment, computers, software used by music makers and the equipment on the receiving end of the consumer. Can you imagine trying to fight through all those conflicting layers which are all or mostly controlled by the same companies? It's hopeless. Just how they want it.

Folks, between companies like Google/You Tube having their own "deals" with these entities, and no direct way for a creator to take them and their peers on legally on any issue without their own supposed side already being in bed with the company that might be abusing them, there's literally no where for you to go for justice. Everyone who might be a little out of the grasp of these few power corporations understands how easily they can be crushed into oblivion should they cross the elites. This is the same situation that people on the right fear from too big government who is deeply in bed with all these companies, and what the left fear from too big corporations who own the same government and have too much power and protection. The left and the right need to wake up and realize it is the same enemy... big government elites and big corporate elites who are in bed together keeping away competition from upstarts and who can use their power the crush employee compensation with cheap illegal labor who can't complain, and who use gov power to pass laws so mega corporations pay little to no taxes (and the tax they pay they get back 10 fold in corporate welfare) and the big talking heads on all issues that divide us all have their own special interest money vested in their actions. (example: in Hollywood, if they want to get cast and win awards and be in the "in" crowd, they must always virtue signal while their own personal lifestyles rarely back up any of their words, and the politicians on the right who railed against Obamacare for 8 years and voted it down over and over when they knew that Obama would just veto it, of course refused to vote it out once they had all the power to do it). It's the same BS on both sides and I hope people wake up.

The music system is more fixed than ever in history and that is saying a lot. In fact, across the board, things have never been so corrupt on both sides and so unreachable between the elites and the rest of us little people.

I only hope those on the right and those on the left here in our little community wake up to the obvious fact that none of us are the enemy of the other. We're both victims Humans have been studied and found to be in two large groups with gradients between the two that blend. Some think emotionally and some think critically. Both can (and often are) correct if they have TRUE information to draw on. Sadly neither side has the full truth about much of anything. PR groups work to give these types of people the propaganda (one sided of course) that simply appeals to how their brain works. They know that when presented with the right propaganda, good people will oppose anything and anyone that violates those facts as they see them. But in truth, in most issues, especially the big wedge issues, both sides believe to their heart they are not only correct but that their side is the only one with morality and/or factual evidence behind it and their brains are rarely able to even consider the other side of the argument using the same thinking approach (factual versus emotional) and thus see the other side as the enemy. In truth we both need BOTH sides, mixed together on all issues to best solve problems. We need open and honest communication where even what seem like the worst ideas are heard so that when the most outlier solution which might solve the problems that never seem to get solved, only more deeply dug in, so we can move forward. The elites in power don't want wedge issues solved. Those are used to make money, to get elected, to keep us fighting instead of working together to grab power away from the unholy alliance of big government and their force backed by legal use of guns and big business and their stranglehold on both the money and the power.

This scam done by streamers is simply one example of how the scam works across the board. And we're ALL the victims. Together.

Brian
Posted By: Barry David Butler

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/06/17 01:12 PM

LOL You are starting to sound like ME.
It is a Monopoly and what about Anti Trust Laws.
If you read Ayn Rand's ATLAS SHRUGGED you will get a feel for this.
That Book is amazing and is all about the Creators and Moral Movers and Shakers just dropping out and then the World sees how important they were and begs them to all come back. People are dumb and don't realize beauty until they don't have it anymore.
BLACK & WHITE RE RUN WORLD...

Hey Brian what is your ideas as to how to fix it.
Posted By: Dave Rice

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/06/17 02:33 PM

Thanks, Brian:

Spot on reporting! ASCAP seems to believe streaming is not a good thing if you believe all the articles in their E-Zine each day.

Sad stuff. ----Dave
Posted By: Jody Whitesides

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/06/17 05:15 PM

Read up on the news about music services and you'd know that none of this has been a "secret." So don't be shocked by the so-called backroom deals. They've been reported upon in the past. Its no secret that major labels have purchased stakes in streaming companies.

The worst offenders are the people that ran the Music Genome Project. If there's anyone that's looking to cash in on streaming its the Pandora people. They've tried every shady trick in the book to avoid paying even legit royalties. There is one company that is at least being somewhat transparent about payouts and such. The rest are all attempting to hold their cards close to the chest, but that doesn't stop the news from being reported.

That being said: get to know how your own business works!! There is no excuse. Saying things are impossible is the easy way out.

Be diligent.

Hell even Brian's quote "Don't sit around and wait for success to come to you... it doesn't know the way." Is correct about streaming. You can't release music with no effort and expect it to magically be listened by millions on streaming sites. It takes awesome songs and diligent work and knowing where to collect the money when it comes.
Posted By: Stephen John (singch

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/06/17 08:33 PM

Thanks Brian, the payout is indeed very low. Keep us updated.
Posted By: Brian Austin Whitney

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/09/17 07:14 PM

Originally Posted by Jody Whitesides
Read up on the news about music services and you'd know that none of this has been a "secret." So don't be shocked by the so-called backroom deals. They've been reported upon in the past. Its no secret that major labels have purchased stakes in streaming companies.

The worst offenders are the people that ran the Music Genome Project. If there's anyone that's looking to cash in on streaming its the Pandora people. They've tried every shady trick in the book to avoid paying even legit royalties. There is one company that is at least being somewhat transparent about payouts and such. The rest are all attempting to hold their cards close to the chest, but that doesn't stop the news from being reported.

That being said: get to know how your own business works!! There is no excuse. Saying things are impossible is the easy way out.

Be diligent.

Hell even Brian's quote "Don't sit around and wait for success to come to you... it doesn't know the way." Is correct about streaming. You can't release music with no effort and expect it to magically be listened by millions on streaming sites. It takes awesome songs and diligent work and knowing where to collect the money when it comes.



Jody, I stated what I could without risking getting sued. The number of people these entities crush is unreported and inhuman. You mentioned one company, and yes, I am sickened that I used to talk to their founder on the phone regularly about his business freely offering advice and any help I could give him and it seems to me that everything he said to me was either a lie or a manipulation of words at best. We were one of the entities that worked hard to help him build the music genome project from the start and to see what he's become is sickening. They are public enemy #1 in terms of ripping off music creators any way they can, but their actions simply lit the way for the establishment to go even further. And since he isn't a big media corporation, he doesn't own every aspect of the system like his competitors, and from what I hear, they are in big trouble. (Though I recall his pleas that if the rates weren't changed they would have to close their doors YEARS ago. That was a lie. I said it when it was happening that it would NOT shut them down and of course it didn't.

Sure, people can still make a few bucks on their music if they expertly manage all aspects of their career and have the talent to back it up, but it is much less than ever before and there was a time when at least your publisher would go against the PRO's and/or the Labels and/or Radio and/or online theft etc. and vice versa to protect their own interests, but when most of these entities all work under the same global umbrella or have back room deals (which are much worse than what is portrayed in the public you must realize) with anyone outside of the artists/writers to make sure they have no real power or recourse, it is worse than it has ever been. From the top tier to the bottom tier, it's a travesty.
Posted By: Jody Whitesides

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/11/17 12:07 AM

Originally Posted by Brian Austin Whitney
Jody, I stated what I could without risking getting sued. The number of people these entities crush is unreported and inhuman. You mentioned one company, and yes, I am sickened that I used to talk to their founder on the phone regularly about his business freely offering advice and any help I could give him and it seems to me that everything he said to me was either a lie or a manipulation of words at best. We were one of the entities that worked hard to help him build the music genome project from the start and to see what he's become is sickening. They are public enemy #1 in terms of ripping off music creators any way they can, but their actions simply lit the way for the establishment to go even further. And since he isn't a big media corporation, he doesn't own every aspect of the system like his competitors, and from what I hear, they are in big trouble. (Though I recall his pleas that if the rates weren't changed they would have to close their doors YEARS ago. That was a lie. I said it when it was happening that it would NOT shut them down and of course it didn't.

He's been cashing out millions a month in stock options. That's no secret either. Claiming the company couldn't pay discounted royalties and then pocketing millions every month.
Posted By: MidniteBob

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/11/17 01:01 AM

Hey, Jody & Brian...Thank you for your insights on this!

Earlier in this thread, Jody said:

"...That being said: get to know how your own business works!! There is no excuse. Saying things are impossible is the easy way out.

Be diligent.

Hell even Brian's quote "Don't sit around and wait for success to come to you... it doesn't know the way." Is correct about streaming. You can't release music with no effort and expect it to magically be listened by millions on streaming sites. It takes awesome songs and diligent work and knowing where to collect the money when it comes."

Fup! ....Thanks for the info & dialogue you two!!!

Midnite

P.S...."Fup" is the title of a wonderful little paperback...It's about an orphaned duck, named Fup, and the duck was given his name because Grand-daddy Jake said: This whole damn world is "Fup-ducked"....and that story was written decades ago, and I found the book in a discount bin....The best 50 cents I've even spent:-)
Posted By: Brian Austin Whitney

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/11/17 11:18 PM

Originally Posted by MidniteBob
Hey, Jody & Brian...Thank you for your insights on this!

Earlier in this thread, Jody said:

"...That being said: get to know how your own business works!! There is no excuse. Saying things are impossible is the easy way out.

Be diligent.

Hell even Brian's quote "Don't sit around and wait for success to come to you... it doesn't know the way." Is correct about streaming. You can't release music with no effort and expect it to magically be listened by millions on streaming sites. It takes awesome songs and diligent work and knowing where to collect the money when it comes."

Fup! ....Thanks for the info & dialogue you two!!!

Midnite

P.S...."Fup" is the title of a wonderful little paperback...It's about an orphaned duck, named Fup, and the duck was given his name because Grand-daddy Jake said: This whole damn world is "Fup-ducked"....and that story was written decades ago, and I found the book in a discount bin....The best 50 cents I've even spent:-)



I am not worried about those who don't put in the work, I am worried about those WITH the talent AND the work ethic who earn millions of plays and STILL don't make any money. It would be very difficult to achieve those types of play levels without a major label, yet some do and they aren't reasonably compensated for it. THAT is what I worry about.
Posted By: Jody Whitesides

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/12/17 06:14 AM

As a NARAS member, I'm actually heading to meet with my local HOR rep to talk about such matters for some upcoming bills. Too bad we don't have more musicians in my area doing it.
Posted By: Johnny Daubert

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/20/17 08:04 PM

Yes, thanks, Brian and Jody! I was about to sign up with Tunecore, to TRY them out for possibly selling single song downloads. I have studied, worked and recorded many years worth of music to maybe get to a point where I could maybe sell downloads. ( I don't wish to sell crappy sounding songs, or crappy songs, for that matter.

I may not be ready to even try doing that. I record on a Mac with Logic Pro X now, and have learned a lot from Mike Caro, (Sub), while at his Staten Island home studio. Thanks Mike! But, even if any of my recent material is worthy of someone's money, (which I respect), now I am stopped in my tracks from reading all of the above. (YIKES)! On one hand, I wold happy making ANYTHING, for I have tried other day job hunting to no good results so far. BUT, on this other hand, I don't want to further help those in control of ripping id Indies off, especially with the mentioned NO justice to be had if there is any legal issues down the road.

So, I will ONLY try to sell downloads on Soundclick, for although NO SALES will happen there, I can at least try to fool myself and think that I have songs up for sale.

I will take advice from Brian and Jody on the matter of where if any downloading site is ok to try to make 70 cents or so on a song's download. If not, not. I will also check out NARAS. I have been so much up to my neck in all aspects of recording and family, that I am not sure what NARAS even is. I still have a LOT to learn, I clearly know that.

Thanks guys!
John, (Struggling with what to do about my music, any potential day job, and getting older). Tinnitus and Hyperacousis is not cancer, but, are no fun on their own terms. I don't know who to stop playing music, as I thought I could do, so I do wish to TRY to make some bucks somehow. I am selling studio session work all the time around here. And for online session work. Thanks again for any advice, and more info on selling downloads, IF my material is even worthy of that.
Posted By: Jody Whitesides

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/21/17 12:08 AM

Originally Posted by Johnny Daubert
Yes, thanks, Brian and Jody! I was about to sign up with Tunecore, to TRY them out for possibly selling single song downloads. I have studied, worked and recorded many years worth of music to maybe get to a point where I could maybe sell downloads. ( I don't wish to sell crappy sounding songs, or crappy songs, for that matter.

I may not be ready to even try doing that. I record on a Mac with Logic Pro X now, and have learned a lot from Mike Caro, (Sub), while at his Staten Island home studio. Thanks Mike! But, even if any of my recent material is worthy of someone's money, (which I respect), now I am stopped in my tracks from reading all of the above. (YIKES)! On one hand, I wold happy making ANYTHING, for I have tried other day job hunting to no good results so far. BUT, on this other hand, I don't want to further help those in control of ripping id Indies off, especially with the mentioned NO justice to be had if there is any legal issues down the road.

So, I will ONLY try to sell downloads on Soundclick, for although NO SALES will happen there, I can at least try to fool myself and think that I have songs up for sale.

I will take advice from Brian and Jody on the matter of where if any downloading site is ok to try to make 70 cents or so on a song's download. If not, not. I will also check out NARAS. I have been so much up to my neck in all aspects of recording and family, that I am not sure what NARAS even is. I still have a LOT to learn, I clearly know that.

Thanks guys!
John, (Struggling with what to do about my music, any potential day job, and getting older). Tinnitus and Hyperacousis is not cancer, but, are no fun on their own terms. I don't know who to stop playing music, as I thought I could do, so I do wish to TRY to make some bucks somehow. I am selling studio session work all the time around here. And for online session work. Thanks again for any advice, and more info on selling downloads, IF my material is even worthy of that.

I wouldn't recommend Tunecore. That's my opinion. You're best bet is still CD Baby for distribution (as it is with most unknown artists).

As for not distributing to streaming sites and then choosing to go only Soundclick?!? My opinion is that is akin to shooting yourself in a major artery in the foot so you can watch yourself bleed to death while you feel good that you can still walk around as you wait to pass on. I do recommend doing digital distribution to all paying download sites and streaming sites. Pretty easy to do with CD Baby. Despite the "doom" Brian is referencing, consumers have picked streaming. Thus to avoid it is silly.

Keep making music!
Posted By: Brian Austin Whitney

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/21/17 04:00 AM

I predicted streaming would win in 1998 and also told people to stop making albums, and focus on singles back when EVERYONE in Indie music was doing and saying the opposite because it was possible and affordable to finally release your own albums that way. I was saying this all the way back to the days when blank CDR's cost $10s a piece. (I still have some of those in a box unused... ouch!).

I am not against streaming and I prefer it and have since Virgin Digital offered that including JPF member music back in the 90's and early 00's. They were more than a decade too early in what they did and paid the price (first to market is a myth.. let someone else blaze the trail and spend the money and effort to make people aware of the format and potential, then swoop in with your warchest and start up money on their back and take over the marketplace.. MySpace to Facebook anyone? Amazon rode the backs of the zillions of initial dot com busts to condition people to what was possible, then picked those companies bones clean and built their foundation on the rubble of their dead companies.

Streaming has always been the way things were going to end up.. ownership is over and that goes for pretty much everything including houses and cars (cars will first become auto driven then people will be banned from driving themselves, then no one will "own" a car but will simply order them as needed when they rarely actually leave their homes.

Brave New World and 1984 were almost naive in their predictions because though they had the right ideas, neither went nearly far enough. It's 20 times worse.
Posted By: Maroon_Corey

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/26/17 07:04 PM

Interesting discussion. I will forgo the more broad discussion regarding whether our nation resembles an oligarchy and concentrate on the streaming issue. It would seem that streaming services have cut out BMI, ASCAP, and SESAC which effectively cuts out composers. Incidentally, I have always had a slight curiosity over the level of value these rights organizations provide to the creators they represent.

I have seen mention of the ownership deals you mentioned in threads like these. These stock transfers could probably be verified in company 10k filings if the company is publicly traded. I'm sure that many of us have seen comparisons of radio to streaming revenue such as this one.

Streaming is unique in that it represents an evolution in the format change of both broadcast media and, through subscription fees, physical media. It seems to be outpacing digital downloads which had eclipsed physical media sales. Of course, that is not to say that radio and physical sales will not continue to exist and have a niche market such as with vinyl. When you consider that no mechanical rights are paid out as per government regulations with physical recordings, there is much more potential loss of composer revenue.

All this begs the question of whether commissions/ advances to composers from labels have increased to compensate for the lost revenue. I would imagine not. To an established composer with a back-catalog of songs that are owned by a major label, I can see how this is a concern when they see their monthly checks dropping or going away.

To small-time musicians like myself, I suppose it is a reminder to either use alternative streaming services that pay fairly, avoid streaming altogether, or just realize that the big streaming players represent exposure and branding opportunity only. Before signing a contract with a major label, it would seem wise to future-proof it by having clauses that address any future form of distribution. However, I'm sure that most times contracts involve the performers and not the composers (unless you are both).

While it really comes as no surprise that large labels are cutting out composers, it would seem that leverage will be hard to come by. Public knowledge has not changed spending habits. Artists could boycott streaming services but most of them are likely unable to do so, at least with their existing catalog, due to contracts. I could see the issue causing a writers' strike from unionized composers, but I wonder how effective it could really be. Another alternative would be a class-action lawsuit if a lawyer could effectively equate free streaming to radio and paid streaming to physical media, thus putting it under law. Or, composers could push for legislation covering streaming.
Posted By: Jody Whitesides

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/27/17 05:12 AM

This smells a bit like troll bait, but I'll bite:

Originally Posted by Maroon_Corey
It would seem that streaming services have cut out BMI, ASCAP, and SESAC which effectively cuts out composers.

This is new news. Exactly how have these streaming services cut them out? Cite source material please.

My experience shows me that SESAC, SoundExchange, Harry Fox and Music Reports are all respectively collecting my writing, publishing, performers, and mechanical splits from streaming services, so if any of them got cut out from any streaming service, someone forgot to send them the memo to quit paying me.

Originally Posted by Maroon_Corey
All this begs the question of whether commissions/ advances to composers from labels have increased to compensate for the lost revenue. I would imagine not.

Increased? Or do you mean decreased?

Originally Posted by Maroon_Corey
To small-time musicians like myself, I suppose it is a reminder to either use alternative streaming services that pay fairly, avoid streaming altogether, or just realize that the big streaming players represent exposure and branding opportunity only.

Why not use all paying streaming methods and let your fans decide which service they prefer (chances are, its not some alternative service). Big streaming services pay for each stream. One of them even goes so far to create a website specifically for artists to get a detailed understanding of how the money works in their system. That same service also recently released an app to allow any artist to see exactly how many streams they get for each song in real time. It rhymes with hottie pie.

Originally Posted by Maroon_Corey
Streaming is unique in that it represents an evolution in the format change of both broadcast media and, through subscription fees, physical media. It seems to be outpacing digital downloads which had eclipsed physical media sales. Of course, that is not to say that radio and physical sales will not continue to exist and have a niche market such as with vinyl. When you consider that no mechanical rights are paid out as per government regulations with physical recordings, there is much more potential loss of composer revenue.

Actually its already a fact that streaming has already outpaced all other forms of delivering music.

Streaming does not pay a mechanical royalty?!? Cite the source of this falsehood please. As stated above, Harry Fox and MusicReports pay mechanicals for streaming and [sarcasm] I bet they would love to know they they're not supposed to be paying streaming mechanicals so they can save themselves money.[/sarcasm]

Originally Posted by Maroon_Corey
While it really comes as no surprise that large labels are cutting out composers, it would seem that leverage will be hard to come by. Public knowledge has not changed spending habits. Artists could boycott streaming services but most of them are likely unable to do so, at least with their existing catalog, due to contracts. I could see the issue causing a writers' strike from unionized composers, but I wonder how effective it could really be. Another alternative would be a class-action lawsuit if a lawyer could effectively equate free streaming to radio and paid streaming to physical media, thus putting it under law. Or, composers could push for legislation covering streaming.

Labels are cutting out composers? Cite source material please.

Public knowledge isn't changing spending habits? That's backwards, public knowledge is showing that consumers prefer streaming, which generates more music industry revenue than selling plastic. Any artist holding out from being on the major streaming services is fooling themselves out of income from zero effort distribution.

You are aware that "free" streaming is still paid for on the big streaming services, and it pays like physical media, as does a premium (paid) stream. They pay different rates, but they both pay Master, Writer, Publisher, and Mechanical royalties. So exactly what kind of class-action lawsuit do you need?

In regards to legislation: On October 18th 2017, hundreds of composers/artists met with their house of representatives across the nation to talk about several bills in regards to streaming, music producers, consent decrees (which affect BMI & ASCAP, but I still believe they should be fixed) and radio. How do I know? I was one of the hundreds pushing for the legislations. Would be much more effective if greater numbers of us "composers" got involved.
Posted By: Maroon_Corey

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/27/17 12:17 PM

Nice to meet you, Jody, and thanks for speaking from firsthand experience. No trolling intended. I obviously have a lot to learn about how royalties are paid through streaming services. My only experience stems from a couple of covers where an intermediary posted payments directly.

I do think it could be argued that labels are cutting composers out since the revenue obtained from streaming services doesn't look like it could ever come near revenue from comparable radio airplay. At the same time, the labels receive special payments and stock arrangements from the streaming companies. Was this discrepancy part of the motivation behind the push for legislation you mentioned?

I would also venture to guess that if you compare the life of a streaming track to a CD sale that the mechanical rights money would not compare on average to the 9.1 cents per physical copy. Another huge difference in my opinion is that with the physical media, the money comes up front with some level of investment from the label since it is paid regardless of whether the product is sold and listened to.

One clarification - when I mentioned public knowledge I was referring to public awareness that many musicians consider streaming services' payment schemes unfair. This general awareness seems to have done nothing to stem the tide of streaming use. As you mention, it has eclipsed other delivery methods.

In full disclosure, I admit that I don't really have a dog in the fight as an unpublished writer and that I was an early adopter of Spotify that continues to use it personally and even professionally with integrations my DJ software offers through the Spotify application program interface. So the conversation is interesting to me from both sides.
Posted By: Douglas Murphy

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/28/17 01:59 PM

So when everything is said and done and the good advice about knowing what and how and who you are getting into bed with any 'good' streamers out there?

Douglas
Posted By: Ray E. Strode

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/28/17 02:30 PM

I would believe any music on a Streaming Service is under a legal contract so all royalties would be distributed. If a streaming service "Cut" someone out they would be subject to being sued under copyright law. It is always advised to learn about the music business so you are aware of what you may have signed up for. According to posts on Indie-Music Streaming has helped the bottom line of revenues being paid.
Posted By: Jody Whitesides

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 10/28/17 06:10 PM

No problem. Nice to meet you too.

If you're properly doing the licenses on your covers, then the streaming services are paying the writers, publishers, and such for each stream that occurs. You'll only be getting the master royalty.

Originally Posted by Maroon_Corey
I do think it could be argued that labels are cutting composers out since the revenue obtained from streaming services doesn't look like it could ever come near revenue from comparable radio airplay. At the same time, the labels receive special payments and stock arrangements from the streaming companies. Was this discrepancy part of the motivation behind the push for legislation you mentioned?

Actually, if you work out the mathematical percentages (which I have done), the percentages are better than the best record deal you could ever hope to get. The difference is that streaming proves whether or not music actually gets listened to. In the prior age of selling plastic, no one knew if anyone actually listened to the music.

Many musicians may think its unfair, however, as I stated its better percentages wise. What the real shock is - knowing if you're actually getting listened to, or not. Streaming is hands down the most efficient means of distribution and consumption based on our current technology. To think otherwise is silly.

Like you, I have a premium Spotify account. Its the best way to listen and explore music, right now.

Even right now during Grammy voting, I keep getting people wanting to send me their CDs and I tell them that I want a Spotify link. That way they'll get paid when I explore their music. But so many don't have their submissions on streaming services, or want me to stream it off of some free site where they won't get paid. That's the silly reality. Hell, even the Grammys are using digital ballots this year. No more paper. No more fuss.

Originally Posted by Maroon_Corey
Another huge difference in my opinion is that with the physical media, the money comes up front with some level of investment from the label since it is paid regardless of whether the product is sold and listened to.

Actually, its not the "label" that pays for that, its the artist that covers it. Also, what you're looking for is free money based on "regardless of whether the product is sold and listened to." Streaming pays based on what is listened to and for how long.
Posted By: Brian Austin Whitney

Re: The truth about Music Streamers? - 11/01/17 03:54 PM

Originally Posted by Ray E. Strode
I would believe any music on a Streaming Service is under a legal contract so all royalties would be distributed. If a streaming service "Cut" someone out they would be subject to being sued under copyright law. It is always advised to learn about the music business so you are aware of what you may have signed up for. According to posts on Indie-Music Streaming has helped the bottom line of revenues being paid.


The problem is the artificially low secretly negotiated "special royalty pricing" the labels have with Spotify in exchange for ownership in Spotify over the years, where the current owners will have milked it dry and then hand it over to the labels and walk away. And apparently there's little artists/writers can do if their publishers and labels make these rip off deals.

Brian
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