UPDATE: Apple Will Now Be Paying Artists During Full 3-Month Trial
In a few short hours, it seems that Apple have already heard Taylor’s cry across the interwebs and jumped into action. In a tweet written by the Vice President of the company, Eddy Cue, he briefly reveals that the service will now be paying artists, big and small, during the first three months of trial membership.
#AppleMusic will pay artist for streaming, even during customer’s free trial period
— Eddy Cue (@cue) June 22, 2015
I am elated and relieved. Thank you for your words of support today. They listened to us. — Taylor Swift (@taylorswift13) June 22, 2015
While this is fantastic and inspiring news, we must remember that Taylor Swift has yet to officially sign on to Apple’s streaming service. Only time will tell if and how this generosity will continue.
Apple has not yet reached out to any artists beyond @taylorswift13. Deals withe publishers already on board stand.
— John Paczkowski (@JohnPaczkowski) June 22, 2015
Taylor Swift has just written an open letter to Apple, regarding their soon to be released streaming service and her opinions on the support (or lack thereof) they plan to give to the smaller artists. Her new album 1989, she says, will not be available to Apple Music’s users.
The main issue Swift takes with the service is the lack of payment to artists for the initial 3-month trial period offered to all users. “I find it to be shocking, disappointing, and completely unlike this historically progressive and generous company.”
This isn’t the first time she’s taken action against streaming services that don’t play fair. Back in November, Taylor pulled her album off of Spotify and refrained from granting TIDAL access, despite having the rest of her material up for use.
This is not about me. Thankfully I am on my fifth album and can support myself, my band, crew, and entire management team by playing live shows. This is about the new artist or band that has just released their first single and will not be paid for its success. This is about the young songwriter who just got his or her first cut and thought that the royalties from that would get them out of debt. This is about the producer who works tirelessly to innovate and create, just like the innovators and creators at Apple are pioneering in their field…but will not get paid for a quarter of a year’s worth of plays on his or her songs.
Taylor makes sure to acknowledge the company for everything else they’ve given to their loyal customer base over their long history. There’s no doubt, however, that Apple has enough money to pay these artists for the first three months of users’ free trial, as she points out. While this business model may draw more of an initial customer base in, as they can try out Apple’s features before dedicating themselves to payment, it will noticeably affect the artists who will be freely dedicating their catalogues for a quarter of a year.
But I say to Apple with all due respect, it’s not too late to change this policy and change the minds of those in the music industry who will be deeply and gravely affected by this. We don’t ask you for free iPhones. Please don’t ask us to provide you with our music for no compensation.
It seems that until Apple changes their policy, they’ll be feeling the absence of Taylor Swift’s work on their site indefinitely.