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Is This the End of Freemium for Spotify?

Photo by M-SUR via Shutterstock

This article originally appeared on musicindustryblog.wordpress.com.

 

"Leaked" Spotify numbers emerged recently indicating that the streaming service has just hit 37 million subscribers, which puts more clear water between it and second-placed Apple Music, despite the latter’s recent growth. It also means that Spotify is now nearly 10 times bigger than Tidal and probably Deezer (which hasn’t reported numbers since its France Telecom bundle partnership ended). It's beginning to look suspiciously like a two-horse race.

But there's a more important story here: Spotify’s accelerated growth in Q2 2016 was driven by widespread use of its $0.99-for-three-months promotional offer. Which itself comes on the back of similar offers having supercharged Spotify’s subscriber growth for the last 18 months or so. In short, $9.99 needs to stop being $9.99 in order to appeal to consumers. Which is another way of saying that $9.99 just isn’t a mainstream price point.

What Musicians Need to Know About the DMCA Fight That Hundreds of Artists Are Taking Part in Right Now

Photo by Todd Bernard via Flickr / CC BY 2.0

Every once in a while, the music industry collectively comes together, with many of the biggest names in the game joining forces to fight something that's hurting everybody. It doesn't happen too often, but sometimes when it does, it is a powerful moment, and it can be very effective.

Right now, an enormous group of musicians have banded together to both educate the public and attempt to alter a law that many outside of the industry have never heard of from a company that everyone else seems to love: DMCA and YouTube, respectively.

So what’s going on, and why are people so upset? Many would say that YouTube is a good thing, as it allows artists to promote their work and even make some money from advertising revenue. That may be the case, but it doesn’t mean that all is fair. In fact, many in the music industry would argue that very little is “fair,” and that things need to change immediately.

7 Types of Releases You Should Put on Spotify (Other Than Albums)

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Having a Spotify profile that appears to be bursting at the seams with music is a good idea, as it shows that you're productive and prodigious, even if you’re still new to the music industry. If you only have one full album up there, it doesn't give people a lot to choose from, and options are always welcome. It’s difficult if you only focus on 10- or 12-song collections, because those only come along every so often, and they’re expensive to create!

Between full-length releases, there's a lot you can do to keep people coming to your profile and listening. Here are seven ideas for what you can upload to Spotify aside from your next album.

Could Berklee and MIT's Open Music Initiative Solve Payment Issues in the Music Industry?

Image by Mattia Panciroli via Flickr / CC BY 2.0

The issues with music licensing in the digital era of music are frustrating and certainly abundant, but there may be a solution in the works. 

Recently, the Berklee Institute for Creative Entrepreneurship (BerkleeICE) teamed up with the MIT Media Lab with the goal of creating a shared and open database of ownership rights. The partnership is appropriately titled the Open Music Initiative (OMI) and involves other major names like Spotify, Pandora, YouTube, Netflix, SoundCloud, NPR/WBUR, Sony, Universal, Warner, and more. This new initiative may have the power to help solve major transparency, distribution, and payment issues that occur within the music industry. 

How Much Do Music Aficionados Actually Spend on Music Now? [Infographic]

Photo by Björn Olsson via Flickr / CC BY 2.0

It's obvious that the way we consume music has changed drastically within the last few years. Music streaming services allow us to listen to nearly any song at any given moment for free or for a small fee. As a result of these changes, the ways in which people buy music is also affected. But has streaming changed the habits of music superfans or, rather, "music aficionados"?