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Businesses Music The Almighty Buck The Internet The Media Entertainment

Pandora Pays Artists $0.001 Per Stream, Thinks This Is "Very Fair" 305

journovampire writes with this story about how much artists make on Spotify. "Pandora founder Tim Westergren has claimed that the company is paying out 'very fair' sums to artists, despite its per-stream royalty weighing in at just one sixth of Spotify's. The digital personalized radio platform has previously gone on-record as saying that it pays music rights-holders approximately $0.0014 for each play of their tracks: Westergren blogged in 2013 that Pandora pays ‘around $1,370 for a million spins’. That’s around 80% smaller than Spotify’s per-stream payout, which officially stands somewhere between $0.006 and $0.0084."
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Pandora Pays Artists $0.001 Per Stream, Thinks This Is "Very Fair"

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  • by Eponymous Coward ( 6097 ) on Monday February 23, 2015 @11:21AM (#49111627)

    How much does a radio station with, say, a million listeners pay when they broadcast a song? Pandora seems to sit somewhere between radio and Spotify as a service and so I would expect the royalty rate to be somewhat more than radio and less than Spotify.

    • by LearningHard ( 612455 ) on Monday February 23, 2015 @11:33AM (#49111763) Journal

      Most radio stations are paid to play songs not the other way around:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/P... [wikipedia.org]

      • by gl4ss ( 559668 ) on Monday February 23, 2015 @11:37AM (#49111801) Homepage Journal

        ah but there is a system of paying per radio play regardless, usually the fee is based on potential listeners.

        not the whole world works like USA as well, in smaller countries being on permanent radio playlist basis can pay the upkeep for an artist(of course there's just so many minutes in a day, so that is going to be a handful of artists)

        pandora and other radio streaming kind of personalized sites work like they do because it makes the royalties cheaper than if the user could choose to play the same song again and again.

        • by pspahn ( 1175617 )

          ... of course there's just so many minutes in a day ...

          Also, you have to consider that a large chunk of those minutes on Pandora are used for advertising. I saw something somewhere that said it is supposed to be like 5 minutes per hour, but in fact it is a bit more than that. I gave up on Pandora because of this. Listen to one song, hear an ad. Listen to another song, hear an ad.

          Grooveshark is going to eat your cake.

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by Shakrai ( 717556 )

            You do know Pandora has a very inexpensive ($3.99/mo) option that eliminates all advertisements and comes with a few fringe benefits, right?

            I haven't heard an ad on Pandora in 6 years.

        • in smaller countries being on permanent radio playlist basis can pay the upkeep for an artist(of course there's just so many minutes in a day, so that is going to be a handful of artists)

          Then again, the same can be said of Top 40 stations in the USA.

      • Just to be perfectly clear, payola is illegal. It has been an on-going issue for decades, but most radio stations are NOT paid to play songs. When payments are made, they are normally to the DJ or program manager, not the radio station, itself.

        Radio stations pay NO royalties to the artists. They do pay to the publisher and the author of the song through a licensing organization. In the US this is usually ASCAP American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers) or BMI (Broadcast Music Incorporated). For

      • by MrL0G1C ( 867445 )

        It would be interesting to know if Spotify et al are paid or given discounts for putting songs prominently.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Artists paid 16 times as much for Spotify than for radio

      Lots of caveats (British radio, British currency, article is 18mths old, Spotify vs Radio, no label involved, one artist is both singer and songwriter + some other assumptions), Spotify pays 16 times what an artist gets from a radio play, per listener.

      from http://www.forbes.com/sites/timworstall/2013/07/17/spotify-royalties-appear-to-be-awfully-high-despite-what-thom-yorke-says/

      • While true, it's irrelevant for two reasons:

        1) The radio doesn't play the songs you want on demand; and
        2) The radio is effectively a way to drive album sales. Spotify is a REPLACEMENT for the album.

        It used to be that it was worth it to play your songs on the radio (even at a loss) because people that liked your one song might want to hear the 10 hours you wrote--that would never be heard on the radio--and spend $10 on the album.

        Now you pay Spotify $10/month for unlimited access to the entire album. To the entirety of the artist's catalogue. To the entirety of all the included artists' catalogues.

        This is obviously and trivially less money than any one of those artists would make previously from you if you liked their music. Perhaps the argument could be made that more people are listening and giving a tiny amount of money to each artist, but I rather think that given the stats I've seen, this isn't even close to true.

        This is much different from the time when people were pirating albums, since many fans would go out and buy an album that they downloaded because they wanted to support the artist. Now people feel that because they're paying $10 to Spotify or Rdio that they ARE supporting the artist. They're not going to pay for a subscription AND an album. That's exactly the opposite of the point of these services.

        They need a new model. Streaming on its own for $10/month is clearly not enough money to go around. Spotify has infrastructure costs and has been bleeding money (I think they had a break-even or profitable quarter just recently?). Meanwhile, they also need to distribute the remainder of the already paltry $10 between a zillion artists. It makes no sense.

        • by suutar ( 1860506 )

          It is, however, relevant to the radio-vs-pandora comparison; since spotify is about 5x pandora (summary), and spotify is 16x radio (gp), then pandora should be roughly 3x radio.

        • by wren337 ( 182018 )
          I think you're assuming that most people would have spent more than $10 a month without spotify. You can argue the dollar amount, but one album a month is probably a pretty good starting point as an average spend. Just because I can listen to thousands of albums in a month doesn't mean I would have otherwise bought thousands of albums in a month.
          • This is true. When I was a kid in the 80s (teen years), I bought lots of records and CDs. By my late 20s (late 90s), that had dwindled considerably, more so in my 30s, and now that I'm in my late 40s, I basically buy no music. Maybe a song per year on average, if that much. I don't engage in filesharing.

            So the $30 or $40 I spend per year on Pandora for an ad free account, which I use probably less than 10 hours per month, is comprised in part of money I would never have given the music industry in the absence of something like Pandora. Note, it isn't that Pandora caused me stop buying music -- I had already stopped more than a decade before I started listening to Pandora. For the music industry, whatever they get out of my Pandora usage should be considered pure gravy that they wouldn't have gotten if Pandora or something like it did not exist.

        • by SydShamino ( 547793 ) on Monday February 23, 2015 @02:32PM (#49113453)

          How about a model where the artists only continue to get paid if they continue to work. You know, like the rest of us? Let's call that model the "Touring and Selling T-Shirts and Actually Writing New Material" model. Couple that with a crazy strategy called "Setting Up an IRA and Actually Saving for Retirement Like Everyone Else" and they might be viable.

          Of course, that assumes enough people want to see them play and buy their T-shirts that they can afford to save for requirement. If they can't, I suggest that they instead try the "Get a Real Damn Job Because No One Owes You The Right To Chase Your Dream If You Aren't Good Enough to Make A Living At It" model.

    • by Overzeetop ( 214511 ) on Monday February 23, 2015 @12:23PM (#49112243) Journal

      Performers get zero payments for songs played on the radio (http://diymusician.cdbaby.com/2014/08/didnt-know-radio-royalties/). The authors of the songs (music and lyrics) do get paid. The payments to the rights holders (authors) of the music get paid from radio at a rate which is somewhere around $0.0003 per listener (give or take about 300% - source: http://davidtouve.com/2011/12/... [davidtouve.com]).

      In contrast, a permanent digital download and a CD (which can be played as many times as you like) have the same one time rate of $0.096 per track. This is set by law and is called a mechanical right.

      So lets see what kind of relative value we have to a CD or PDD:

      One radio listener, one listen = $0.0003, iow a permanent right "breaks even" at 320 listens

      For Pandora and Spotify, they have to pay the entire chain - producers, artists, authors, promoters, etc.
      If we scale the total fees using an album model, with a typical album costing $9.99 and having 12 tracks, of which 30% goes to the retailer, the value of a "track" is $0.583, or about 6x the amount paid for the author on that track. (you can argue the specifics, but if you're buying tens of millions of CDs worth of songs, you'd better get pricing that it *at least* this good)

      So at that 58.3c/permanent track...
      One pandora listener, one listen = $0.0014, break even is at 416 listens
      One spotify listener, one listen = $0.007, break even us at 83 listens.
      Radio has to play that track for 1920 listens to match the total compensation paid by the two streamers.

      What does online streaming look like now? Pandora is slightly below Radio in their compensation per track to everyone they pay. You might contend that Pandora "finds" new artists better due to their model instead of radio playing whatever they're given to promote, and therefore provides slightly more value. Spotify, OTOH, lets you choose just what you want - you can play Brittney Spears all day, over and over - and therefore it's more like buying a track. And if you were to hit 83 plays on a track, you'd have been better off just buying the track. 83 plays seems like a lot, but that's over an entire lifetime - actually lifetime plus 70 years in copyright.

    • I would be more interested to hear how much they made per stream. It is just ad based right? You do not make that much off of an individual seeing an ad for 5 minutes. The average user probably listens for hours at a time, which will come out to like 15 cents, which is loads more that I would of thought an ad company would give them for a single user.
  • How much do artists get paid for each play of their track on the radio?
    • by guruevi ( 827432 )

      Nothing, artists typically pay to get their songs on the radio.

    • Re:Radio (Score:5, Informative)

      by Somebody Is Using My ( 985418 ) on Monday February 23, 2015 @11:54AM (#49111979) Homepage

      For that matter, how much do artists get paid each time I listen to a track on a CD?

      Hmmm, let's see: Artists get about 10% of retail [funtrivia.com]
      A CD costs $10, and say there are ten tracks on the CD.
      Thus, each track costs $1, and the artists earns ten cents per track.
      Most of my CDs were purchased at least ten years ago. I have no doubt I have listened to many of those tracks at least 100 times (those that were purchased more recently obviously don't have the same number of "listens", but - barring sudden death or deafness - I expect they will in time).
      So the artist gets about $0.001 (1/10th of a cent) every time I listen to a track.

      That's slightly less than Pandora pays and 6 times less than Spotify. Even assuming they get slightly better rates and I listen to the tracks far less frequently, the artists are still earning about as much money each time I listen to a track on CD (well, okay, ripped to MP3 but you know what I mean).

      You could argue that the percent the artist is earning is far too low - that the middlemen are siphoning off too much into their own pockets - but that's a different issue. As it stands, it seems to me that online streaming services are paying them about the same (if not more) than they might get from more traditional sales, at least if you calculate based on the number of times a song is heard.

      Maybe measuring "per listen" (stream) isn't the optimal way of calculating revenue.

      • by Creepy ( 93888 )

        Actually, it isn't quite that - artists get 10-20 cents a track after all expenses, which get taken out of their cut. Songwriters and all other studio jobs get a cut off the top and do not pay expenses out of their cut. This is how some studios stay afloat despite the recording artists not making a penny.

  • "Rights Holders"? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by The Rizz ( 1319 ) on Monday February 23, 2015 @11:21AM (#49111637)

    So, does the money actually go to the artists, or just to the publishing companies?

  • by guruevi ( 827432 ) <evi@noSPAM.smokingcube.be> on Monday February 23, 2015 @11:22AM (#49111641) Homepage

    The amount they pay out to the artist per stream is irrelevant if you don't know how much streams, how much revenue and how much other costs they incur.

    If they pay $0.1/stream to the 'rights holders' and $0.001 to the artist, then that is a contractual issue between the artist and the rights holders. If Pandora pays $1M upfront to a label company to stream their library and then additionally pays $0.001 to the artist/stream and Spotify pays nothing to a label company but pays $0.006 to the label company who then gives 1% to the artist, then which approach gets the artist more money?

  • Add it up (Score:5, Interesting)

    by halivar ( 535827 ) <bfelgerNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Monday February 23, 2015 @11:22AM (#49111645)

    A tenth of a penny per stream, times how many people for whose Pandora channels it appears, times how many times it gets repeated on that channel over the year? I would think the artist eventually comes out on top of what they'd make off the same song being sold for 99 cents on iTunes. Key point: it's not a royalty per song; it's a royalty per listen.

    • That's what the artists are not considering. In the best of cases, the entire production team: artists, writers, producers, promoters, will never average more than about $0.55-0.60 per track for a CD or permanent digital download. Pandora pays the cost of a permanent individual license, valuable for the life of the author plus 70 years by copyright law, after just 320 listens. Spotify in less than 90 listens. I'm finding it hard to see the economic case that an ephemeral transmission for 3 minutes is worth

  • by Anonymous Coward

    I thought that Pandora didn't pay the artist anything at all, but rather paid the label who then pays the artist. So how much money does the label get?

  • "Fairness" (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bill_mcgonigle ( 4333 ) * on Monday February 23, 2015 @11:29AM (#49111727) Homepage Journal

    There's no such thing as "fairness" - it's a fairy tale concept that causes humans far too much suffering.

    I would love to get $1300 for each million user sessions served by a system I designed - holy cow that would add up. I get paid for a job, and that is that. I realize that artists often sign bad business contracts (when I do, I just lose money - boo hoo).

    But regardless Spotify and Pandora aren't equivalent - the songs I hear on Pandora are often ones I've never heard before. I've bought CD's based on its generated recommendations - Pandora is a promotion platform for artists. Spotify tends to be more for music on demand. It's nice that Pandora also pays the artists for the airtime - I'd imagine Pandora would survive just fine only playing for promotional value.

    • Re:"Fairness" (Score:4, Interesting)

      by GameboyRMH ( 1153867 ) <gameboyrmh@gma[ ]com ['il.' in gap]> on Monday February 23, 2015 @11:41AM (#49111841) Journal

      There's no such thing as "fairness" - it's a fairy tale concept that causes humans far too much suffering.

      Funny, that's what I think about denying that fairness is possible.

      • by itzly ( 3699663 )

        Of course, it's possible. As an artist, don't sign a contract unless you think it's fair.

      • by gfxguy ( 98788 )
        The question is really not if life should be fair (it should be), but what "fair" means. If Pandora negotiates rates with record companies (or just the RIAA), then what's not fair about what they're paying? If the rate's too low, blame the RIAA, or the companies. Ultimately, if the artists signed a contract, is it not "fair" that all parties live up to it? You shouldn't sign an "unfair" contract, after all... and no, nobody held a gun to their heads, figuratively or otherwise.
    • the songs I hear on Pandora are often ones I've never heard before. I've bought CD's based on its generated recommendations

      I have "trained" Pandora such that it doesn't play anything new any more. However, in the process of "training", I did find quite a few new artists and bought CDs or MP3 downloads.

    • There's no such thing as "fairness"

      Well, why not? I mean, if you are making an empirical observation, sure I agree with you. But if you are claiming there is no reason to aim for more fairness, I wholeheartedly disagree.

      You're making a case that you with you got paid more money, but not any kind of case that that would be more fair.

      But fundamentally, we can all agree that morals exist. And fairness seems to be a natural outgrowth of said morals.

  • Even cheaper (Score:4, Informative)

    by MitchDev ( 2526834 ) on Monday February 23, 2015 @11:33AM (#49111767)

    Trawl the used CD shops and garage sales, et al and then rip them yourself, create your own playlist and use your portable music player, no internet connection required....

    • If your time has no value that is.

      • Actually my time is cheap on my days off. Although I used tohit pawn shops every few days and load up on CD I just pirate it all now. Althugh I've bought AtarI Teenage Riot and tne next The Prodigy albums and previous albums online,

      • You must be one of those lazy fat people who never leaves your mom's basement...

  • by RogueWarrior65 ( 678876 ) on Monday February 23, 2015 @11:38AM (#49111813)

    Personally, I'd like to be able to get royalty payments every time somebody used one of my commercial software programs or one of my hardware devices. Think about it. You spend a few months writing a piece of software and then get paid for it for life. Quite frankly, IMHO, the entire royalty business model is broken because while the original intent may have ensured that the "artists" weren't being taken advantage of, it's gotten so out of control that these "artists" have now been brainwashing into believing that they are oh so much more important than everyone else and that their opinions on things they know nothing about are to be taken seriously.

    • by davek ( 18465 )

      +1 Insightful!

      Does da Vinci get paid every time someone looks at the Mona Lisa? Why should Jagger get paid every time I want to hear "Jumpin Jack Flash?"

      • One of the current issues for music recording artists is that we've essentially removed the traditional method of getting paid for producing a new album. A painter hopes to initially make $'s on the first sale of a new painting. So he/she doesn't really concern him/herself with the concept of "pay per view" after the fact.

        These days, most musicians either invest their own money into production and distribution of a new album, or they sign with a record label who may loan them some money as part of a contra

        • A painter hopes to initially make $'s on the first sale of a new painting. [...] So how do we fix it?

          Let fans crowdfund a musical group's next album.

        • Then artists should look to make money on the tour that follows their new album, and be done with it. Instead of paying a 100-man crew and bringing in 10 trucks of custom sound and lighting equipment, then splitting the take 6 ways with the other band members, how about writing music that can be played on a rested grass lawn with minimal overhead and a four-piece band? And if that still doesn't work, how about just doing this on the weekends while you have another job during the week?

          Nobody has a right to

      • Look on the bright side. In 100 years, you'll be able to listen to Jumpin Jack Flash for free, assuming they don't extend copyrights again.

    • Why should something that generates revenue over time not be paid out the same way to the creator? A book or a movie (that is more than single-use-pulp) may be selling books and DVDs and ads in TV reruns for decades.

      if you're asking for the creators to be payed upfront when the work is finsihed, you'd need to find someone who is going to finance that - paying with money that has not been earned yet.

      There are certainly advantages to such a model, but it would definitly create a middleman with too much power.

      • Well said. So tired of these bitter neck beards griping that they get paid just the once for writing some code and hating the fact that musicians get paid peanuts when and if they actually sell any copies of their music - having NOT been paid anything at all up front. As a musician I would suggest that financially the effort put in to creating the music is a sort of investment, with the hope that the recordings will be enjoyed and become somewhat popular. Someone such as myself can't survive on my music out
      • by itzly ( 3699663 )

        Why should something that generates revenue over time not be paid out the same way to the creator?

        You mean that construction workers should get a royalty from rental houses ?

    • There are several software products that have a per-use fee attached to it (TurboTax, for instance), as the creator you have the right to set the conditions for use, and the buyers have the right to accept or reject those terms.

      Musicians and filmmakers produce a product that is license-based, when you buy a movie you get a license to consume the material as you wish. Those that use that license for commercial applications have to pay a royalty. Whether the artists are important or not doesn't seem releva

  • by kheldan ( 1460303 ) on Monday February 23, 2015 @11:39AM (#49111817) Journal
    ..and I like it even less now. Tried Pandora a few years ago. Was rather annoyed with the way it worked so I ditched it. Reading this now, and knowing many producing musicians, I like it even less than I did before. The music industry has always more or less shit on artists, and apparently Pandora is no exception.
  • by Bob9113 ( 14996 ) on Monday February 23, 2015 @11:42AM (#49111855) Homepage

    The implicit argument in this clumsily biased summary is that Pandora is paying too little. But does that hold up to scrutiny? From an economic perspective, it is an easy thing to measure. Music economics runs on artificial scarcity, copyright. So the amount of money flowing into music is not something naturally regulated by the free market, but a decision we make by adjusting the lever of copyright law. Something we've been turning up for a century now. So here's the underlying question: Are we dedicating enough of our economic resources to this industry whose cashflow is predominately artificially generated by law?

    Are we spending enough, as an economy, on the production of music, or do we have a shortage of people willing to enter the music creation business? If there is not a shortage, we do not need to increase copyright cashflow. If there is a surplus -- if, as an example measure, we have too many kids neglecting their studies to pursue pipe dreams of superstardom -- we should be making copyright less strict and shifting some of our GDP into other productive industries.

    • Already posted, so please accept this +1 insightfull.

      But there is one flaw: How would you measure if we have "enough" people in music creation? Do numbers count at all? What about quality? How many pop idols would be needed to outweigh a Leonard Bernstein? How many for an Elvis Presley?

      • by gfxguy ( 98788 )

        But there is one flaw: How would you measure if we have "enough" people in music creation? Do numbers count at all? What about quality? How many pop idols would be needed to outweigh a Leonard Bernstein? How many for an Elvis Presley?

        Numbers count only because the more noise there is, the harder it is to find the signal. You like to think that the cream rises to the top, but it's sadly not always the case. Leonard Bernstein and Elvis Presley are only "worth more" because they were early pioneers. If they were breaking into the industry today, do you think they'd have that much success? Just musing.

      • by Bob9113 ( 14996 )

        How would you measure if we have "enough" people in music creation? Do numbers count at all? What about quality? How many pop idols would be needed to outweigh a Leonard Bernstein? How many for an Elvis Presley?

        I think that framing it in terms of quality of the output is an inherently subjective measure. I'd rather put it in terms of the resources that are getting put into music, and whether they are being used efficiently. So, for example, look at the labor flowing into music: How many kids neglect their s

      • by tnk1 ( 899206 )

        Before there was a music business or copyright, people like Mozart or Handel or name your pre-20th Century composer/performer here, and they got paid. And people who were not as talented did as well.

        Mind you, many of these folks like Mozart had money problems, although some of their money problems were due to how they lived, as opposed to scarcity of payment. By and large, however, it was mostly enough to live on, and they didn't need to work in a field to get that payment.

        I think changing the model would

    • by jedidiah ( 1196 )

      The problem with the argument is that it tries to distort the situation and ignores any useful discussion of the market value of the item in question.

      What is the single value of an impression? How does that relate to the value of a single broadcast? How does that relate to the value of a single?

      Most of these headlines are loud whining that depend on general innumeracy.

      • by Bob9113 ( 14996 )

        The problem with the argument is that it tries to distort the situation and ignores any useful discussion of the market value of the item in question.

        The problem with market value, though, is that the market price of monopoly goods is not naturally regulated. Lots of people use the revenue of music to estimate its value, but monopoly goods are not naturally priced. Copyright is a government created artificial monopoly. It exists for a good reason -- to channel revenue into science and the useful arts -- but

  • by ugen ( 93902 )

    So I listen to Pandora about 1-2 hours per day (all of the workout time, and then some). During that time I hear perhaps 20-40 songs, for a total cost of $0.03 - $0.06. That's $1-2 per month, perhaps $10-20 per year.

    Not a bad deal I guess. I'd pay them that much for ability to pick songs, of course :)

  • On demand vs. random (Score:5, Interesting)

    by tepples ( 727027 ) <tepples@gmail.TEAcom minus caffeine> on Monday February 23, 2015 @11:49AM (#49111931) Homepage Journal

    I wonder if labels let Pandora get away with such low payouts because Pandora doesn't give the user quite the same control as the premium services. Unlike Spotify, which lets users construct a playlist, Pandora randomly chooses songs similar in style to the chosen artist's songs. Its approach appears to comply with the "noninteractive" requirement of the U.S. compulsory license, not allowing the user to select individual songs, and the "performance complement" requirement, playing no more than four songs by the chosen artist in three hours.

    • Of course that's the reason. Pandora is Internet radio; Spotify is a replacement for a music collection. This is why I switched from Pandora to Spotify about a year ago. Spotify offers radio like Pandora, plus the ability to select tracks and albums. They're not a lot like each other.
  • If you don't like how much Pandora is paying the artists it hosts, then sign up for premium. Better yet, buy the damn artists album or swag.
    It's almost crazy to think that the artist is able to get his/her songs to play on Spotify, Pandora AND the radio. This combined with actual sales sounds lucrative. Most of us only get paid from one place at a time.
  • by YoungManKlaus ( 2773165 ) on Monday February 23, 2015 @11:51AM (#49111951)

    In spotify's case we know the artists get scrap because they have shit deals with their labels and the labels keep all the money. So how does this compare to Pandora?

    • Payments are paid to the rights holders. Artists get what is in their contract unless they own the rights.

      It's one reason the artists are so up in arms - they're getting shit because they have shit contracts. Well, that and they're just the performer. They think they should get all the money. But that would be like paying an architect $1,000,000 for your house and paying the builder and subcontractors nothing. It doesn't work that way.

  • by PvtVoid ( 1252388 ) on Monday February 23, 2015 @12:02PM (#49112047)

    Why do artists expect to be paid at all for recordings of their music? For a very brief period in history, making money off of recordings was made possible by a coincidental combination of technology and artificial scarcity caused by the cumbersome nature of physical media. Before the advent of physical recordings, musicians had to make money by performing. After the advent of digital recordings, musicians will once again have to make money by performing. Anything else will prove to have been historically anomalous.

    Making and distributing recordings will still be in artists' interest, because they will serve as a way to generate demand for performances. That is, recordings will become a form of advertising, which will be distributed for all intents and purposes for free, or even at the expense of artists.

    Can we quit wringing our hands about this now? Art will survive just fine.

    • Before the advent of physical recordings, musicians had to make money by performing.

      During this period, how did composers and songwriters make money? Perhaps modern-day musicians could become performer-songwriters and make money in an analogous way.

  • by gfxguy ( 98788 ) on Monday February 23, 2015 @12:14PM (#49112155)
    If the artists don't like it, they can pull their music. Why should I care what the royalties are? And if they can't pull their music because their RIAA mafia record company won't let them, then it's the record companies fault. A lot of the shock and outrage I see on slashdot seems heinously misdirected.
    • by mi ( 197448 )

      If the artists don't like it, they can pull their music.

      Exactly. As long as there is competition, it is not any of our business, how much a particular party is paid.

      And if they can't pull their music because their RIAA mafia record company won't let them

      In that case, an application of the anti-trust laws — which we've had for over a century now — is or, rather, would have been in order.

  • by Karmashock ( 2415832 ) on Monday February 23, 2015 @12:27PM (#49112287)

    People keep complaining about stuff like this without realizing that no one is forcing artists to list themselves on Pandora at all.

    You don't have to put your music on their service. At all.

    If you did put your music on their service then you agreed to whatever their rate was at that time.

    END OF STORY SHUT THE FUCK UP.

    If you don't like the rate now, then tell that to pandora and if they don't give you more money then either suck it up or leave.

    Again... End of fucking story.

    Let me put the prices in some perspective. I can go to Youtube, search any song by just about anyone, and find that song often listed by the publisher of that artist... and I can listen to that song over and over again for free.

    So... Where is the money coming from that pays these artists? The ad revenue from non paying users? On a per ad basis you're talking about a tiny amount of money. And then you have to keep in mind that a user could listen to several songs between each ad. Which means that ad revenue has to be split between all those artists and that is only after Pandora has gotten enough to meet their bottom line. All things considered, the price is not unreasonable.

    Does it suck that artists aren't making the record company money they used to make? Perhaps... but that's over and done with. The day of the rock god is over. Accept it.

    If you want to be a professional musician these days then you have to crowd fund yourself. Set up a website, distribute exclusive content through it, do fan requests, interact with your users, and try to sustain yourself with a subscription model if you can. That... or try to sustain yourself with live performances. The record deals are gone. You're not going to buy yourself islands with your guitar unless you're very lucky.

  • by iamacat ( 583406 ) on Monday February 23, 2015 @12:53PM (#49112537)

    With Pandora model, each play potentially introduces artists/albums that the listener has not heard before. When the song is playing, there are purchase links on the bottom of the screen. This is different from Spotify's on demand access. Pandora is not able to charge its users same rates (or get most people to sign up for pay subscription in general) and is helping artists get sales from other channels. I think some difference in rates is reasonable. It would make more sense to compare Pandora with iTunes Radio and other similar services.

  • Hey I did some paperwork for my job 10 years ago I should be paid every time that data is used again for the rest of my life. FAIR IS FAIR!!!

    Artists and their corporate cronies think they should be paid every time you sing their song in the shower. Fuck them.

"Laugh while you can, monkey-boy." -- Dr. Emilio Lizardo

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