Taylor Swift has published open letter on her Tumblr on Sunday morning, explaining her reasons for keeping her album 1989 off of Apple's new streaming service Apple Music. Taylor criticizes the fact that for the three-month free trial period every consumer gets, Apple won't be paying artists for those streams. Apple VP of iTunes Content Robert Kondrk confirmed in an interview with Re/code that music owners will receive 71.5% of Apple Music's subscription revenue, which is slightly higher than the industry standard in order to make up for this three-month trial period. She writes, "Three months is a long time to go unpaid, and it is unfair to ask anyone to work for nothing. I say this with love, reverence, and admiration for everything else Apple has done." Read excerpts of the letter below and read the whole piece here.
I write this to explain why I’ll be holding back my album, 1989, from the new streaming service, Apple Music. I feel this deserves an explanation because Apple has been and will continue to be one of my best partners in selling music and creating ways for me to connect with my fans. I respect the company and the truly ingenious minds that have created a legacy based on innovation and pushing the right boundaries.
I’m sure you are aware that Apple Music will be offering a free 3 month trial to anyone who signs up for the service. I’m not sure you know that Apple Music will not be paying writers, producers, or artists for those three months. I find it to be shocking, disappointing, and completely unlike this historically progressive and generous company.
This is not about me. Thankfully I am on my fifth album and can support myself, my band, crew, and entire management team by playing live shows. This is about the new artist or band that has just released their first single and will not be paid for its success. This is about the young songwriter who just got his or her first cut and thought that the royalties from that would get them out of debt. This is about the producer who works tirelessly to innovate and create, just like the innovators and creators at Apple are pioneering in their field…but will not get paid for a quarter of a year’s worth of plays on his or her songs.