It has become very, very fashionable to bitch about the low payouts artists are receiving from streaming music services like Spotify, Rdio and Pandora. But let’s pull back the curtain, shall we? This graph is based on an audit done in France.
The rates which streaming music services are negotiated by labels. Note where the revenue flows.
- Labels: 45.6%
- The platform (i.e. the streaming music company): 20%
- Taxes: 16.7%
- Songwriters and music publishers: 10%
- The artist: 6.8%
If you take out the 20% owed to the platform and the 16.7% that goes to taxes, the record label takes 73.1% of the revenue.
Wow. What’s wrong with this picture? Pando Daily takes a great look at the situation here.