SPOTIFY SURVEY – Does Spotify pay artists a fair rate?

Posted on July 19th, 2013 by in Music Industry News, Polls

In a week where Radiohead’s Thom Yorke generated a rousing debate regarding Spotify and the royalty rates they reward artists, we conducted a survey with our users and across our social media platforms to canvas industry opinion at a grassroots level.

We had an overwhelming response with over 1600 individuals completing the survey and over 640 people leaving comments.

A huge thank you to everyone who took part and for their contribution to the debate.

Here are the results of the survey and a selection of comments.

”Spotify is still in its early stages but it’s pioneered a sustainable platform for users to listen to music legally and relatively fairly. By supporting the model that Spotify have established, the company will grow even greater and the main beneficiary of this will eventually become the entire music industry. Refusing to support the model is essentially shooting yourself in the foot. Streaming music is here to stay and Spotify have calculated a fair system to pay the artists it promotes – a system which they have also stated will be reviewed in favor of the artists as soon as it becomes financially viable. Spotify potentially holds the key to a healthy future of the music industry.”

”I think that Spotify does pay artists a fair rate, as far as I know all artists are paid the same rate and the more plays you get the money you receive. I don’t think the question is one of fairness but whether the rate is good. I don’t believe that it’s a good rate considering the amount of work artists/producers etc put into their work especially if they’re a smaller artist as Spotify isn’t great for music discovery. But as they say “A cheque is a cheque”.

”Spotify, is an incredible app and allows everyone to the vast world of music, far quicker and more concisely then iTunes would or could ever do. It has a far greater data base, which is well laid out and immediately accessible. The down side is that many people will never need to buy a download album again, let alone a physical CD. However this is a sign of the times, and unless the internet miraculously disappears it is the future.”


”How would I know? I have no information what Spotify or any other industry pays artists. That they pay them any money is I would think a bonus rather than nothing.”

”They are exploiting a loop hole in a pay for use system. Web sites like Last.fm are classed as an on RADIO station so are design to pay artist the say fees as being played on the radio (or other places signed up to PRS). As an artist it is a catch 22 situation. Get mass distribution of your material and get paid very little or not be connected to millions of people. In the end they could be doing A LOT more to help artist,especially unsigned artists.”

”I chose not to add my music to Spotify – it doesn’t pay artists enough and devalues their music by allowing listeners to stream it at the click of a button. I can see how it is useful for artists’ back catalogs where the albums have already sold a large amount but doesn’t work for new music or more underground artists.”

”The problem is not necessarily the rate paid by Spotify, it’s the fact that there is still no workable model by which less established or more niche artists can recoup recording costs and make money from recordings. It’s my opinion that artists need to think outside of this idea of payment per stream or usage of their music. Performance should not be seen as a replacement revenue stream either – instead, artists should be looking to establish networks of patronage whereby the fans who support them and like their music are willing to support them financially too. What these fans would get in return depends essentially on the kind of music being made by the artist and what they can offer in terms of small scale intimate performances or exclusive content that those outside the patronage network would never have.”

”It makes recording an album for new artists impossible to fund through conventional means”.


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One Response to “SPOTIFY SURVEY – Does Spotify pay artists a fair rate?”

  1. Jiffster Says:

    Personally I’d like to thank Tom Yorke for making a complete prat of himself again proving he is at least a year or so off trend always, and highlighting it to the masses who are about 2 years (and counting) off trend to start complaining about Spotify being shit for music royalties.

    ”The problem is not necessarily the rate paid by Spotify, it’s the fact that there is still no workable model by which less established or more niche artists can recoup recording costs and make money from recordings.”

    That’s crap. The problem is exactly the rate made by spotify devaluing music to it’s lowest level and probably making huge profits at artists expenses by providing music too cheap. the artists can choose to record with 1 mic in a room or 100 and a gazillion pounds that’s up to them.

    “It’s my opinion that artists need to think outside of this idea of payment per stream or usage of their music. Performance should not be seen as a replacement revenue stream either – instead, artists should be looking to establish networks of patronage whereby the fans who support them and like their music are willing to support them financially too.”

    That has always happened in every payment system known to man and the music industry….

    “What these fans would get in return depends essentially on the kind of music being made by the artist and what they can offer in terms of small scale intimate performances or exclusive content that those outside the patronage network would never have.”

    You are being very patronising and If I were you think again about the point you are making.

    ”It makes recording an album for new artists impossible to fund through conventional means”

    Bullshit. It’s cheaper than ever to record. To sell recordings is harder than ever because of that fact and people still can’t be bothered to find new artists and prefer to be told what to buy. That’s why Spotify exists. To devalue music further, play more, pay less, and nobody gains but their bank account.

    Well done Tom Yorke again, give yourself a slap on the back again mate for someone who supposedly started the internet album sale revolution to the biggest wingemonger known to man, mate I feel soooooo sorrry for you…….oh my……and everyone who jumps when you fart!

    Try Bandcamp instead

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