Elon Musk blasts streaming services for “crazy low payouts”

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Music creatives have long gotten the short end of the stick when it comes to music streaming royalties. Once the honey pot is divvied up between streaming platforms and music labels, artists and songwriters walk away with only a small piece of the pie.

Mercurial tech baron and founder of Tesla, Elon Musk, is the latest powerful voice to recently speak out on the issue of unequal distribution. The issue is no new struggle in contemporary capitalism, either. The fact of the matter is: when big business is involved, individuals lose out.

But it seems Musk now has a direct stake in the issue considering he’s now dating Canadian singer/songwriter, Grimes. The couple made their first public appearance as a couple at the Met Gala last week in New York City.

The conversation arose over Twitter when Musk was asked about his favorite Grimes song; for which, by the way, he has two:

One conscientious fan tweeted the tech baron wondering which streaming platform fans could engage with in order to most directly benefit Grimes financially.

Musk responded with an infographic showing Spotify, Pandora, and YouTube as the bottom three platforms in terms of gross payout per stream. XboxRhapsody and Tidal are among the top when it comes to artist payouts, with Apple MusicAmazon, Deezer, and Google falling somewhere in the middle.

While the issue of online streaming payouts continues to be a new frontier for the music industry — especially as it converges with tech giants and new platforms who want a piece of the pie — Musk should be commended for bringing the issue into public conversation. At the very least, it is a genuine show of online activism when powerful tech elites raise their voices for unheard, underpaid artistic creatives who often get no say in the matter.

Spotify halts promotion of R. Kelly’s music amid sexual misconduct allegations

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Spotify plans to remove R. Kelly’s music from its algorithmic and official playlists under its new hate content and hateful conduct policy, a set of guidelines that enables Spotify to remove “hate content,” defined by the streaming service as “content that expressly and principally promotes, advocates, or incites hatred or violence against a group or individual based on characteristics, including race, religion, gender, identity, sex, ethnicity, nationality, sexual orientation, veteran status, or disability.”

Although R. Kelly’s music does not promote “hatred or violence against a group,” the recent accusations of sexual misconduct on the singer’s behalf, alleged by several young women who claim that Kelly coerced them into being members of a “cult,” violate the “hateful conduct” branch of the policy. “When an artist or creator does something that is especially harmful or hateful (for example, violence against children and sexual violence), it may affect the ways we work with or support that artist or creator,” Spotify’s policy states.

Spotify will consequently refrain from supporting R. Kelly’s music. “His music will still be available on the service, but Spotify will not actively promote it. We don’t censor content because of an artist’s or creator’s behavior, but we want our editorial decisions—what we choose to program—to reflect our values,” Spotify said.

Kelly has since denied the allegations. Kelly’s representative told BuzzFeed News that Kelly “supports the pro-women goals of the Time’s Up movement.” “We understand criticizing a famous artist is a good way to draw attention to those goals—and in this case, it is unjust and off-target,” the rep added.

Photo Credit: BBC

H/T: The Hill

XXXTentacion’s “SAD!” Also Removed From Spotify Playlists Under New Policy

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As part of Spotify’s new hate content and hateful conduct policy, which officially went into effect today (5/10), the company announced that they would no longer be promoting R. Kelly’s songs on its editorial or algorithmic playlists on its service, though his music will still be available to stream on the platform. But he’s … More »

Spotify tests new ‘Friends Weekly’ playlist comprised of your friends’ favorite songs

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Some Spotify listeners might have noticed a new weekly playlist feature appear on their apps.

Although the playlist function remains in testing stages, Spotify has created “Friends Weekly,” a playlist featuring song selections curated from your friends’ recently played Spotify tracks, available to a group of subscribers. The feature was originally perceptible to a smaller number of Spotify users months prior, but has since been extended to more listeners.

Further incentivizing engagement is Spotify’s addition of a separate assortment of playlists titled “Friends’ Discover Weekly,” which will allow streamers to take a peek at the songs that make up their Spotify friends’ Discover Weekly playlists.

Spotify users currently have the capability to follow their friends’ Discover Weekly playlists —assuming that the given friend has made the playlist public — but will now be able to browse their friends’ Discover Playlists without needing to search for that specific friend. Like “Friends Weekly,” the row of “Friends’ Discover Weekly” playlists is also in developmental stages and will remain available to a select number of Spotify users, for now.

Photo Credit: u/reCAPTCHAmePLZ via Reddit

H/T: The Verge

Spotify Removes R. Kelly From Its Playlists

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Beginning today (May 10), Spotify users will no longer be able to find R. Kelly’s music on any of the streaming service’s editorial or algorithmic playlists. Under the terms of a new public hate content and hateful conduct policy Spotify is putting into effect, the company will no longer promote the R&B singer’s music in … More »

Calvin Harris Is Now The 5th Most Streamed Artist In The World On Spotify

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Calvin Harris is the most successful DJ in the game right now. He has been the highest paid DJ in the world for five years running now and continues to break the music industry with each new release. His latest track alongside Dua Lipa, ‘One Kiss’ has topped charts all over the world – and

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Instagram and Spotify introduce new story feature to simplify music sharing

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The days of screenshotting that track that you’ve been digging in order to share it on your Instagram story are over.

Instagram and Spotify introduced a new music sharing feature that allows Spotify listeners to share the song that they’re currently streaming with their Instagram followers. Spotify users need only to select the ‘Share to Instagram Story’ option from the ‘share’ dropdown menu to do so. Sharing a song unlocks exclusive art stickers specific to each song, album, artist, and playlist. Instagram users can then add the stickers to their music post to further customize the story addition.

The new ‘Share to Instagram Story’ button streamlines the music sharing process, one that is key to many Instagram account holders’ interaction with the app. “The music world lives on in Instagram–three out of the top five most-followed accounts belong to music artists,” Instagram said in a statement. “Music fans come to Instagram to express themselves and discover new content from their favorite artists and we’re making that easier with the ability to share directly from Spotify.”

When followers view a given song story, they will be presented with the ability to listen to the tune on their own Spotify app, via a ‘play’ button visible in the upper lefthand corner. “It adds a whole new level to music discovery since friends will be able to get a glimpse of what you’ve been listening to–and you can do the same with them,” Spotify said of the feature.

Spotify intends to extend the function to Facebook Stories at a later point.

H/T: NME

Spotify Launches Redesigned App For Free Users

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During Spotify’s event in New York City today, Spotify revealed a redesigned app experience for 90 million free customers. The Spotify redesign marks the first major change to Spotify’s free tier since 2014. With the update, Spotify’s free listeners will now get on-demand access to 15 ‘select’ playlists where you can play any song inside

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Nick Offerman’s New Music Movie Features Jeff Tweedy, A Spotify Indie Playlist, And A Character Watching Mitski On YouTube

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Fellow bearded Americana stalwarts Nick Offerman and Jeff Tweedy have collaborated on a number of projects, and now their paths will cross again in the upcoming Brett Haley-directed feature film Hearts Beat Loud. In it, Offerman plays a record … More »

Spotify’s This Is Avicii Playlist Updated To Reflect His Passing

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Earlier this morning, we received the news of Avicii’s passing. At just 28 years of age, Avicii passed away. Shortly after his passing, Spotify updated the official “This Is Avicii” Spotify playlist stating “Thank you Avicii. Your music will live on forever” along with an official post on Spotify. With the playlist currently pinned as

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