Artist pay from streaming services has been a hot topic in recent months and lots of artists have been voicing their opinions on the matter, like Taylor Swift, who pulled all of her music off of Spotify and wrote a letter
to Apple Music about her views on the issue.
The latest artist to voice his opinion is The Black Keys' Patrick Carney. Things started Monday night when Apple Musics Chief Creative Officer, Nine Inch Nails frontman Trent Reznor, harshly criticized Youtube saying, "It is built on the backs of free, stolen content and that's how they got that big."
Hearing Reznor's words, Carney tweeted "A sell out in my book in 2016 is anyone that takes a share in a streaming company who also is an artist and doesn't advocate for fair pay." Carney went on to tweet "Give me five minutes on @youtube and I probably can find 250 songs that are available which the artist isn't getting paid for. At least."
Lots of artists have taken a stand against streaming services, like Adele, who will not make her latest album 25
available on any streaming sites. Streaming services completely demolish digital download sales, which is detrimental to artist's success.
says an average per-stream payout to rights holders of between $0.006 and $0.0084, and if you are a super-popular artist like Beyonce, there are millions of users who are streaming your music, so at the end of the day you are still making a ton of money, but what if you aren't Beyonce? What if you are an indie-rock band with a way smaller fan base? These kinds of bands and artists are barely making the rent, let alone money from streaming services, and yet they don't seem to be much of anyone's concern.
Spotify is currently working with the National Music Publishers Association to find a system to be able to pay songwriters and publishers royalties more effectively. What Spotify should be doing is making their service completely unavailable unless you pay. All Spotify users should have to pay a membership fee.
For example, if all of Spotify's users who don't pay, suddenly started paying $10 a month to use the service, like most of their paying members, Spotify would be making $450 million a month. That extra $450 million dollars could go towards paying songwriters and publishers better royalties. Problem solved.