Spotify Responds To Century Media Pullout, Another Label Joins Anti-Streaming Chorus

image from Earlier this week, metal and hardcore music group Century Media pulled its labels from Spotify "to protect the interests of their artists".  "Spotify in its present shape and form isn't the way forward," according to the company. "Physical sales are dropping drastically in all countries where Spotify is active."  Now Brian Brandt of contemporary classical and jazz label Mode Records (Cage, Feldman, Xenakis, others) has joined the anti-Spotify chorus and Spotify is responding to the controversy.

"While the major labels and pop music may be able to reap a real income stream from Spotify simply due to the sheer volume of streams, the Spotify model is not financially sustainable for any indie niche label," according to Brandt. "As the industry moves more in this direction (competitor Napster, for example, only yields slightly more, about 1 cent per stream), it will simply choke the indie labels out of business."

Now Spotify responds to the controversy:

"We are sorry that Century Media have opted not to offer its music to their fans through Spotify. Spotify has one of the biggest music libraries in the world - of over 15 million tracks - and is committed to offering our users the widest possible selection of music across artists and genres from around the world.

Spotify was launched out of a desire to develop a better, more convenient and legal alternative to music piracy.  Spotify now monetises an audience the large majority of whom were downloading illegally (and therefore not making any money for the industry) before Spotify was available.

Spotify is now generating serious revenues for rights holders; since our launch just three years ago, we have paid over $100 million to labels and publishers, who, in turn, pass this on to the artists, composers and authors they represent. Indeed, a top Swedish music executive was recently quoted as saying that Spotify is currently the biggest single revenue source for the music industry in Scandinavia.

Spotify is now also the second single largest source of digital music revenue for labels in Europe (IFPI, Apr 2011). Billboard reported in April that Spotify territories saw an average digital growth rate of 43% last year. By contrast, neighbouring countries (without Spotify) saw only 9.3% digital growth.

We are very proud of the positive contribution that Spotify makes towards growth in the music industry."

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