Taylor Swift’s new album 1989 is set to be the biggest commercial success this year, coming in ahead of even Beyoncé hugely successful self-titled surprise album. But that hasn’t kept Taylor and her label from pulling out from the way that many fans will get ahold of the album without actually paying for an individual copy of it — Spotify.
Swift recently told Yahoo! News that she sees the rise of streaming music services as detrimental to the industry itself, saying that it furthers the lowering value of music to listeners that began with online piracy in the first place.
“I’m not willing to contribute my life’s work to an experiment that I don’t feel fairly compensates the writers, producers, artists, and creators of this music. And I just don’t agree with perpetuating the perception that music has no value and should be free.”
In an interview with former Motley Crue frontman Nikki Sixx, a representative for Taylor echoed her comments. Scott Borchetta, president of Big Machine Label Group, says that streaming services are rude to consumers who choose to purchase the album.
“We never wanted to embarrass a fan. If this fan went and purchased the record, CD, iTunes, wherever, and then their friends go, ‘Why did you pay for it? It’s free on Spotify,’ we’re being completely disrespectful to that superfan.”
He went on to say that Spotify in itself is dangerous to the music, not just to artists like Swift on his own label.
“They have a very good player. It’s a good service. And they’re going to just have to change their ways on how they do business. If you’re going to do an ad-supported free service, why would anybody pay for the premium service? It can’t be endless free. Give people a 30-day trial, and then make them convert. Music has never been free. It’s always costs something and it’s time to make a stand and this is the time to do it.”
Taylor and other pop divas, of course, don’t have much to worry about when it comes to finances. Smaller musicians, however, have a lot of risk involved when they are only in their early days of notoriety — especially if that success is split between several members. Swift’s rep says that Spotify needs to develop a more symbiotic relationship with the music industry.
“They take [the music], and they say, ‘We’re going to put it everywhere we want to put it, and we really don’t care about what you want to do. Give us everything that you have and we’re going to do what we want with it.’ And that doesn’t work for us…. They just need to be a better partner.”
Would you buy Taylor Swift’s 1989 if it wasn’t on Spotify?
[Image via Wallpapers Wide]