Apple’s Quick, Positive Response Surprised Taylor Swift


Apple’s positive response to the letter from pop star Taylor Swift was a surprise to her, Swift acknowledged in an interview published on Tuesday. She previously sent a letter to the iPhone firm criticizing its music royalties policies.

Swift was not very sure of writing the letter

In an interview with Vanity Fair, Swift said her concern was that people would perceive her as being obsessed with royalty issues as in 2014, she withdrew her music from the popular music service app Spotify, owing to payment issues.

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“My fears were that I would be looked at as someone who just whines and rants about this thing that no one else is really ranting about,” Swift said. What led Swift to write the letter was a screenshot of the Apple Music contract sent to her by one of her friends with the phrase “zero percent compensation to rights holders.” This attracted her attention, and she chose to raise her voice against it through an open letter to Apple. She received her mother’s approval before submitting the letter for publication, Swift told Vanity Fair.

Apple much better than Spotify

Prior to the letter from Swift, Apple decided to make no payments to music owners for the tracks listened to by users during the three-month free-trial period of the Apple Music service. Swift’s letter brought about a sudden turnaround. If Apple had chosen to stick to its decision, it would have meant huge financial losses for musicians, publishers and songwriters. This attracted opposition from several other artists and record labels as well. Even for Apple it would have been a big loss. Had Swift withdrawn her album 1989 from Apple Music, it would have resulted in a huge loss for the launch of Apple Music as Swift is among the most popular musicians in the world.

Swift said she found Apple’s way of treating artists far better than that of Spotify. Comparing the responses from the two companies, Swift said, “I found it really ironic that the multi-billion-dollar company reacted to criticism with humility, and the start-up with no cash flow reacted to criticism like a corporate machine.