Black Collar Workers



Century Media

Fans hoping to stream music by Nachtmystium, Inrtronaut, Nevermore and hundreds of other Century Media artists on Spotify are suddenly out of luck: in a move that leaves little doubt as to why the recorded music industry is in the shitter (key word: recorded), the label has suddenly pulled all of its artists off of Spotify. Word on the street is that they’re holding out for a better deal that pays more on a per-stream basis.

Full disclosure: Century Media regularly purchases ad campaigns with MetalSucks. Spotify never has.

In a nutshell, the mistake Century is making is this: it’s all about the long-term, not the short-term, you dummies.

This is an incredibly tough pill for the Century suits to swallow — they’re more concerned with posting impressive numbers to lock in their next contract than developing the careers of the label’s bands — but the value in services like Spotify is not in generating immediate revenue for the label and its bands, but in exposing fans to new artists, strengthening that artist-to-fan bond over time, and then capitalizing long-term on merch items, tour tickets, sponsorships and the like. Discovering new music has never been easier, and as such there is incredible value in having a label’s catalogue on Spotify. These bands will see profit from this exposure down the road in the same way that giving away a free mp3 on MetalSucks as an exclusive track premiere can be a boon for pushing sales of their new album. If Century is desperate for short-term revenue because they haven’t got their artists in Management / 360 deals (they’re the same thing), well, sucks for them, but frankly that’s not my problem.

This is the Napster debacle all over again, deja vu. Labels more concerned with numbers now than benefit later. Instead of fighting against technology, Century should be embracing it and figuring out a way to make it work for them.

In other news, the CD is going to experience a miraculous resurrection and solve all of Century’s woes! Phew! For a second there I was worried this new “digital” thing might take over.

Do what you can to get Century back on Spotify: ping them on Facebook and Twitter and let them know that you think they’re missing the boat.


Tim: MacQueen

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