Arena Music has announced that it will begin offering royalty payouts for music streamed through the Arena platform in Bitcoin worldwide starting in June. The company has been testing the digital currency in Phoenix and Atlanta over the last 6 months. In March, Bitcoin reached parity with gold for the first time since its inception. It’s been deemed the “most exciting monetary experiment in modern times.”
The company is an on-demand merchandising storefront that leverages a free streaming service to help artists monetize their content in an industry where consumers no longer buy music to own. By using the music as a loss leader, Arena helps artists and labels redirect consumer attention to exclusive merchandise offerings.
Offering payouts in the popular cryptocurrency highlights the company’s forward-thinking approach and alliance with independent content creators by offering them compensation with another form of capital or investment–one that can never be offered by any subscription-based streaming platform.
According to a recent report from the Financial Times, music streaming is set to overtake CD and vinyl as the largest generator of income for British record labels in 2017. The report states that as more people opt for subscriptions to streaming services such as Spotify and Apple Music, revenues in the sector were pushed to a five-year high last year. Total income generated by the U.K. music industry increased by 5 percent to £925 million ($11.6 million) in 2016, from £881 million ($11.1 million).
Yet despite the popularity of the music industry, musicians often find themselves unfairly compensated.
To rectify this problem, the Open Music Initiative (OMI) and Ujo Music, among others, are attempting to change outdated modes in the music industry to ensure long-term sustainability, with the intent to use blockchain technology to support the creation of music.
Read Article: Bitcoin Magazine
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Undercutting rival Spotify and others in the industry, SoundCloud is offering consumers music for $4.99 a month. This price is 50% lower than what Spotify offers, according to Bloomberg News.
Yet with both SoundCloud and Spotify being in the red, some are insisting that the lower $4.99 charge could be key for SoundCloud and Spotify to attract more paying users and to make money.
Read Article: Investopedia
Moving forward, the problem for YouTube is one of size. Its page views and unique users make it the second highest ranked website in the world after Google. It surpasses Facebook.
In this context, the music recording and publishing industries are no longer prepared to stay on the sidelines and just gratefully acknowledge YouTube’s role in promoting music and, often, new talent. As YouTube’s ad earnings grow in tandem with its popularity it is being perceived as a beneficiary of proprietary sound recording and musical compositions that demand more consideration at a time when consumers of music are demonstrably paying more for it and are expected to continue doing so in the future.
The reform of longstanding safe harbor provisions, and their relationship to music making, are in the end a discussion about how the shares of recorded music product should be distributed over the Internet. So far the spoils have gone to the colonists, i.e. the technology companies and, particularly, YouTube.
Read Article: Music Business Journal