Study shows 82 percent of artists earned less than $300 from music streaming in 2019
New data from a survey-based study show that 82 percent of UK musicians—including those with thousands, hundreds of thousands, and millions of streams—reported earning less than $300 (£200) across all streaming platforms in 2019, giving quantitative backing to the ongoing argument that current streaming rates do not sufficiently compensate artists. The poll, facilitated by The Ivors Academy and the Musicians’ Union, prompted participating artists, musicians, songwriters, and composers to disclose their 2019 income from streaming, among other insights.
Overall, 92 percent of responding creatives stated that streaming accounted for less than five percent of their annual income in 2019. Half indicated that their yearly earnings from recorded music declined over the past 10 years, catalyzing 43 percent to seek employment outside of the music space.
The findings demonstrate that “the song and the songwriter are undervalued,” according to The Ivers Academy CEO, Graham Davies. “Too much streaming money is going to the major labels, this is an outdated model and needs reform,” he asserted.
Comments from poll participants expressed the following sentiments:
“[Streaming is] not sustainable and does in no way even return the investment I put into the recording, production or marketing of the songs.”
“Albums which cost tens of thousands of pounds—perhaps hundreds of thousands—to produce generate pitiful revenue from streaming platforms, so there’s no incentive for…independents like me to make records.”
“I have written songs that have been prominently playlisted on streaming platforms…These songs have garnered millions of streams but generated next to no income for me as songwriter.”
The findings were released ahead of the The Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) Select Committee’s second meeting (held December 8) on music streaming business models and their economic impact on artists and the music industry at large. The Committee launched the inquiry in November, and is specifically investigating “whether the government should be taking action to protect the industry from piracy in the wake of steps taken by the EU on copyright and intellectual property rights,” according to UK Parliament.
Via: The Ivers Academy
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