Union of Musicians and Allied Workers Launch “Justice at Spotify” Campaign for Higher Payouts


The rates Spotify pays artists per stream has been a source of ire since the very day the service launched in the U.S. in 2011. And those cries have continued for nearly a decade. Now, unaccepting of reality, a group known as the Union of Musicians and Allied Workers has launched a petition dubbed “Justice at Spotify” with one main goal: raising payouts to artists.

Look: I get it. I would love it if musicians were paid big bucks. They deserve it! But the rates they’re paid are dictated by music fans, and music fans have decided a subscription service with almost every song ever available with one click is worth only $10/month. The per-song payout rates are calculated based on that.

What’s more, Spotify still isn’t profitable. So clearly there isn’t any more money to go around.

Here’s what the petition says:

“Spotify is the most dominant platform on the music streaming market. The company behind the streaming platform continues to accrue value, yet music workers everywhere see little more than pennies in compensation for the work they make.

“With the entire live music ecosystem in jeopardy due to the coronavirus pandemic, music workers are more reliant on streaming income than ever. We are calling on Spotify to deliver increased royalty payments, transparency in their practices, and to stop fighting artists.”

In the “What We are Asking For” section, the UMAW lays out a series of completely unrealistic demands that will never in a million years happen:

“Pay us at least one cent per stream

“Adopt a user-centric payment model

“Make all closed-door contracts public

“Reveal existing payola, then end it altogether

“Credit all labor in recordings

“End legal battles intended to further impoverish artists”

The petition has already been signed by 9,737 artists and counting, including such luminaries as 12.13, 13nazd, 143days, Adam B and Karen.

Sign it here if you like.

[via Metal Injection]

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