MUSIC: CLIMBING THE CHARTS TO BECOME NUMBER ONE
Techlife News|25, December 2021
Though Apple Music may still be playing catchup to Spotify in terms of users, new data from the Mechanical Licensing Collective has revealed Apple is the industry leader when it comes to royalties, demonstrating the company’s commitment to paying talent. As Apple continues to expand its services, the future looks bright, with new Music innovations coming their way.

AT THE TOP SPOT

In a perhaps unsurprising announcement, Apple was named in mid-February as the biggest contributor of music streaming royalties in the world, ahead of rivals Spotify, Amazon Music, and YouTube. According to the Mechanical Licensing Collective, streaming services have paid out more than $424,384,787 in revenue to musicians and labels to date, with Apple Music contributing the biggest share with $163,338,890 paid out. The figure represents “historical unmatched royalties from digital service providers,” and is made up of payments from 20 different providers. Whilst Apple Music remains smaller than Spotify globally, the company has paid out the most revenue since its inception, likely because Apple does not offer a free version of its music streaming platform outside of a free trial. Spotify comes in second place, paying out $152,226,039, whilst Amazon lags behind in third place with $42,741,507. The news comes two years after Apple Music overtook Spotify for paid subscribers in the USA, and proves that the company is continuing to add to its user base. What is important to note is that Apple does not disclose streaming service subscriber numbers, so analysts can do nothing other than speculate as to the size of the company’s music arm, but as the figures from the MLC suggest, Apple’s contribution reveals it’s performing well.

Speaking of the payments, the MLC said: “The transfer of these monies represents the culmination of a months-long effort on the part of The MLC and these DSPs to develop and implement the specifications for these usage reports. With these historical unmatched royalties and usage reports now in hand, The MLC can begin the process of reviewing and analyzing the data in order to find and pay the proper copyright owners.” The Mechanical Licensing Collective was incorporated following years of criticism and complaints about the way streaming service providers were handling music streaming royalties, with artists often left without revenue due to delayed pay-out practices or lower-than-expected play fees. It’s true that streaming has revolutionized the way we listen to music, and whilst it offers great value for consumers, it’s also benefitted the music industry. In the United Kingdom, for instance, streaming has contributed more than £3.5 billion to the country’s music industry, with consumers prepared to pay to listen to music as opposed to pirating content. Although new research has found that pirating is making a return as streaming sites disband and increase their prices, the vast majority of consumers are now comfortable paying for music from their favourite artists.

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