Apple has gone into defensive mode after Taylor Swift threatened to pull down her album 1989 from the company’s streaming music service over royalty payments. Swift disagrees with the company of not paying artists over its three-month free trial offer for subscribers.
Apple should not expect free music
In her blog post on Sunday morning, she justified her decision of not making 1989 available on the service at launch. Taylor Swift mentioned that Apple Music will not pay writers, producers or artists for those three months, and this, according to her, is very shocking, disappointing and does not go with Apple’s image of being historically progressive and a generous company.
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In a letter on Sunday morning, Swift said, “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.” Swift went on to say that since no one expects a free phone from Apple, the company should not expect artists to offer music for no compensation. Swift mentioned in her letter that she wasn’t concerned about herself and was speaking for new artists or bands that just released their first singles and would not be paid for their work.
Apple changes its plans
Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet software and service, responded to Swift’s messages late Sunday night, stating that Apple Music will pay artists for streaming during the free-trial period by customers. “We hear you @taylorswift13 and indie artists. Love, Apple,” Eddy tweeted.
Swift was quick to respond to Cue’s tweet, saying that she is happy, and acknowledged the words and support of Apple.
The Cupertino, Calif.-based company unveiled the music service earlier this month. The company, for now, is following a strategy to lure in paying subscribers. One of the executives previously told Re/Code that Apple’s payments for songs, “are a few percentage points higher than the industry standard, in part to account for the lengthy trial period; most paid subscription services offer a free one-month trial.”
However, It’s not just Apple that had to face the brunt of Taylor Swift. Previously, Spotify saw her album stripped from its archive due to compensation issues. The letter “To Apple, Love Taylor” was shared tens of thousands of times within few minutes, demonstrating the power of the artist’s megaphone and potentially creating a publicity nightmare for Apple.