To help us provide you with free impartial advice, we may earn a commission if you buy through links on our site. Learn more

Swift takes another swipe at Spotify, forgives Apple

Taylor Swift

Pop star attacks Spotify for petulant attitude to her royalties rant

Taylor Swift has reignited the row over how much musicians are paid by streaming services, taking another swipe at Spotify for failing to address her concerns over royalties. Swift pulled her music from Spotify last year, claiming that the service failed to compensate artists properly. 

The pop star later became embroiled in a row with Apple, publicly lambasting the iPhone maker for failing to pay any royalties during its three-month trial of Apple Music, before Apple relented and agreed to pass revenue to the music labels. Swift’s albums now appear in Apple Music and she was one of the heavily promoted artists at launch.

In an interview with Vanity Fair, Swift lambasts Spotify’s attitude to her complaints. “Apple treated me like I was a voice of a creative community that they actually cared about,” she says. “And I found it really ironic that the multi-billion-dollar company reacted to criticism with humility, and the start-up with no cash flow reacted to criticism like a corporate machine.”

Spotify issued a public blog post after Swift launched her attack on the service, pointing out that it had returned more than $2 billion to the music labels since its launch, and suggesting that labels were not passing on that revenue to their artists.

Swift’s attack on Apple had more than a faint whiff of a publicity stunt, given that Apple meekly rolled over and agreed to pay royalties within a day of her outburst. But in her interview with Vanity Fair, Swifts insists she acted alone, having been sent a copy of Apple’s contract by one of her friends. “I read the term ‘zero percent compensation to rights holders,'” Swift states. “Sometimes I’ll wake up in the middle of the night and I’ll write a song and I can’t sleep until I finish it, and it was like that with the letter.”


Read more