Am I hearing right?

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Re: Am I hearing right?

Post by Drew Stephenson »

Mike Stranks wrote: Wed May 31, 2023 8:40 am I've come across very few in any sphere that are deliberately obtuse... just that companies are dotting every i and crossing every t to ensure that there is no wriggle-room. If there is, someone will seek to exploit it.

This! ^^^
Unfortunately contracts to be used at any scale have to be written on the basis that someone will try and exploit them. Because someone will. As usual, a small bunch of people ruin it for everyone else.
It's just like being back at school. ;)
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Re: Am I hearing right?

Post by Mike Stranks »

Interestingly (well, to me! :lol: ) my taking the company now known as Evri to court was precisely because there was ambiguity in one of the schedules to their contract.

They settled before we got to court... and the ambiguity is no longer there...
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Re: Am I hearing right?

Post by BigRedX »

My understanding of streaming revenues is that for artists that have lots of streams the payout is poor because they have signed a deal with their record company which allows the record company to pocket a significant proportion if the money.

Certainly when I look at what I'm getting per stream, it's considerably higher than all those claiming to be earning peanuts are saying. The downside is that I'm not getting enough streams to make that better percentage work for me. I would need the sort of publicity that comes with having the weight of a record company PR department behind me to achieve that.

Also AFAIK, none of the streaming services actually make any money. They are being propped up either by the more profitable parts of their parent organisations, or by outside investors hoping to eventually see some return.
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Re: Am I hearing right?

Post by amanise »

Mike Stranks wrote: Wed May 31, 2023 8:40 am
amanise wrote: Wed May 31, 2023 7:43 am
One thing I wish they'd do is make the contracts easier to understand...

Ah! Tricky things, contracts... :)
...
I've come across very few in any sphere that are deliberately obtuse... just that companies are dotting every i and crossing every t to ensure that there is no wriggle-room. If there is, someone will seek to exploit it.

... There is that - and its worse in the US than it is here for us in Blighty. Always seems to have been a sticking point in music as well. How many horror stories are there out there about artist contracts that the artist had no hope of understanding when they signed them. I understand the neck of a guitar pretty well - but Synch Addendums? Forget it!
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Re: Am I hearing right?

Post by MarkOne »

BigRedX wrote: Wed May 31, 2023 10:03 am Also AFAIK, none of the streaming services actually make any money. They are being propped up either by the more profitable parts of their parent organisations, or by outside investors hoping to eventually see some return.

From the numbers it looks like Spotify are closing in on profitability. Certainly their losses as a percentage of revenue are much smaller.

Apple only publish the amalgamated content revenue (so including Apple TV, Apps and Games with Music) so who knows, but I’d bet the Music service is still loss making.

Who knew… Giving free access to almost every song in the universe for the price of a double shot skinny latte per month and paying lots of money to the big labels (and a weeny bit to the artists) is not a licence to print money.
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Re: Am I hearing right?

Post by OneWorld »

It seems like the 'working groups' will have their work cut out if they are attempting to unravel the intricately woven contracts. I was labouring under the illusion that the working group could have a perusal and a few meetings and maybe throw a few field trips in and then issue an edict - writers/creators/composers will get paid proper money for any of their work that is streamed, and ocean going yacht builders and Lambo dealers can rub their hands with glee in anticipation of some new business coming their way, but yet again, seems the lawyers are the ones that will end up with the fattest wallets
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Re: Am I hearing right?

Post by RichardT »

OneWorld wrote: Wed May 31, 2023 11:26 am It seems like the 'working groups' will have their work cut out if they are attempting to unravel the intricately woven contracts. I was labouring under the illusion that the working group could have a perusal and a few meetings and maybe throw a few field trips in and then issue an edict - writers/creators/composers will get paid proper money for any of their work that is streamed, and ocean going yacht builders and Lambo dealers can rub their hands with glee in anticipation of some new business coming their way, but yet again, seems the lawyers are the ones that will end up with the fattest wallets

The contracts are not under UK jurisdiction, in most cases if not all, so there’s no way changing UK law would make a difference.
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Re: Am I hearing right?

Post by James Perrett »

BigRedX wrote: Wed May 31, 2023 10:03 am My understanding of streaming revenues is that for artists that have lots of streams the payout is poor because they have signed a deal with their record company which allows the record company to pocket a significant proportion if the money.

Certainly when I look at what I'm getting per stream, it's considerably higher than all those claiming to be earning peanuts are saying.

That ties in with what I see (I've done some work for a label helping to streamline their income processing). If you consider streaming is more like radio than physical media then the money coming from the streaming services isn't too bad. The biggest problem is with smaller artists signed to old contracts on big labels who aren't streamed as much as the big artists. If they were signed to a truly independent label who treat their artists fairly they would probably see a reasonable income but, as it is, they receive next to nothing.
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Re: Am I hearing right?

Post by RichardT »

James Perrett wrote: Wed May 31, 2023 12:03 pm
BigRedX wrote: Wed May 31, 2023 10:03 am My understanding of streaming revenues is that for artists that have lots of streams the payout is poor because they have signed a deal with their record company which allows the record company to pocket a significant proportion if the money.

Certainly when I look at what I'm getting per stream, it's considerably higher than all those claiming to be earning peanuts are saying.

That ties in with what I see (I've done some work for a label helping to streamline their income processing). If you consider streaming is more like radio than physical media then the money coming from the streaming services isn't too bad. The biggest problem is with smaller artists signed to old contracts on big labels who aren't streamed as much as the big artists. If they were signed to a truly independent label who treat their artists fairly they would probably see a reasonable income but, as it is, they receive next to nothing.

I think one element of unfairness is that (as I understand it) the majors get higher royalty rates on Spotify than the smaller labels and the independents.

It’s understandable on one level as they have bought significant shares of Spotify, but it creates a bias against the smaller players.
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Re: Am I hearing right?

Post by Drew Stephenson »

I think all the streaming services are wrestling with a very delicate balancing act. For musos like us, we'd probably happy double our member fees per month and still think it a bargain - or at least a fair price.
But, as I've said before, most people just aren't that interested in music. Put the price up and, especially in a cost of living crisis, you might lose more subscribers than you gain from the increased fees.
So then you consider not providing a free service - at which point you watch piracy numbers shoot up again.

I expect average monthly fees to go up to $12 to $15 in the next twelve months.
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Re: Am I hearing right?

Post by James Perrett »

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Re: Am I hearing right?

Post by BigRedX »

For me streaming services are used either as background music or "try before I buy", and for that the free version of Spotify works perfectly well.

If I really want to support an artist I'll go to one of their gigs and buy their CD or record, or a T-shirt (which is normally has the biggest profit margin of any item on the merch table).
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