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Any performer that ever sells a product on television is for now and all eternity removed from the artistic world. I don’t care if you shit Mona Lisas out of your ass on queue, you’ve made your fucking choice.
Bill Hicks (1991)
We always stand on the shoulders of artists who came before us, but we don’t often remember to wipe our feet.
Saying “most artists make their real money through touring” is like saying, “the front guy in the human centipede was the lucky one.”
9 things Spotify would be doing if they actually cared about artists
- Promoting “Buy Now” links on album pages and next to individual tracks.
- Allowing artists to edit their own profiles.
- Displaying links to artists’ websites, FB pages, twitter profiles, etc.
- Allowing users to “Like” and “Follow” an artist right from the Artist page.
- Allowing users to sign up for artists’ email list from the Artist page.
- Serving ads in a way that did not encourage users to interrupt their listening mid-album/playlist in order to listen to or do something else.
- Supporting seamless playblack, so that albums whose sequence and segues are important to its experience will be delivered in a format true to the artist’s vision. They could give artists the option of removing ads from their album streams in exchange for a waving of their royalty for that album.
- Paying independent artists the same rates as major label artists (One could argue that major labels should be paid lower rates than independents, since their overall revenue from Spotify is offset by an 18% share of the company).
- Paying artists a flat rate for their streams, instead of tying their royalty rate to advertising revenue over which the artist has no control. Artists should not be taking on risk along with Spotify unless they’re also given stock options in the company. The current Spotify model treats artists like investors but without any long-term benefits.