Streaming payments

Wow! That is way above my buying even at my peak! I guess that over the years I’ve averaged about that a year, though getting on for double in 1970s. … (Even if I liked more, I couldn’t have afforded to buy more.)

Funnily enough I found a few articles saying streaming was far worse environmentally before the query was raised in this thread. Suspect it doesn’t matter as the masses will not give up their cheap music.

@Richard.Dane - can you let me know if it’s ok to mention a streaming service started by a friend in this thread? I have no commercial interest in said service.

So long as it’s all above board and legal and you have no input into it or any commercial interest in it then you can mention it. Please no links though. Thanks.

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As above, a friend started Audiotarky recently, with support from Grant For The Web, specifically to address the poor payments made by other services. It uses coil based payments. Starting at $0.36/hr. MP3 only, limited set of artists, but supposed to be one of the higher paying services out there.

I wonder (hope!) if “grass roots” streaming might get the big players thinking about better models.

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I’ve often wondered why streaming services seem quite dated generally.

For music it would be interesting if they offered a jukebox type approach which allowed you to play a song once for a nominal fee or purchase for a set fee - the twist on this I’d like to see is if you listen so many times to a song you like that either repeat pkays are cheaper or reduce purchase price.

Same for renting movies - if I can buy from Amazon/iTunes etc for £13.99 or rent for £4.99 I’ll likely rent it, but why at the end of the rental do they not offer a discounted purchase if you really enjoyed the movie? It would make a lit of sense to me as a consumer.

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Yep to all that. Suspect both markets would benefit from a bit of diversity in how they let consumers buy stuff!

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The movie one is odd as very few modern movies warrant repeated viewing.

If I really enjoyed something though why not ‘snare me’ with a discounted purchase at the end of a rental? Probably a better return than making me wait much longer for the purchase price to drop a lot.

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I am not sure that many older movies warranted repeat viewing and think it is likely that today it is a similar percentage that will become films many will choose to watch repeatedly.

With music-rental from the streaming-services you distribute every time you listen. And you listen (distribute) individually, item for item. So there is a lot of distribution going on. A lorry of CD:s is transported only once, with many CD:s and often relatively local transport.

The album download model is probably the environmentally most friendly. It is also the closest coupling between listener and artist. As opposed to the rental model where artist revenue per stream is so low the artist become dependent on other sources (and their control) to finance a release.

About 1% of artists generates 90% of all streams. The payment model used by the streaming services makes payments event more tilted. The increased use of algorithms to generate playlists and the increased use of playlists makes this only worse. The result of the internet has been a big transfer of resources from smaller artists to a small well-marketed group of artists.

Who can afford to be an artist in the future? Upper middle class youth? Be prepared for the coming onslaught of The Osmonds look-a-likes :slight_smile:


Some artists make millions from streaming. If nobody listens to your music then you’ll probably need a day job regardless of the per stream royalty.

Of course. If people are happy listening to Adele and Ed Sheeran and their ilk, then streaming’s perfect. As Jan says above, 1% of artists generate 90% of the streaming revenue. If someone likes an artist’s music they should be happy to stump up the tenner. We don’t expect free food. Why should music be effectively free? £15 a month for an all you can eat musical buffet? It’s crazy.


I see this so differently. In the past I would spend £10+ on a new album and sometimes find it wasn’t to my taste. This was poor value for money. The result was that I played it safe buying albums from main stream artists at the expense of trying new music. With streaming I am listening to more music than ever, listening to a more diverse range of artists, discovering new artists and spending more on my music (monthly streaming fees for Spotify and Qobuz). Streaming has reignited my passion for music in a way that physical media could never have.

Now whether the monthly subscription fees are appropriately priced or whether the financial benefits flow to the right organisations and individuals is up for debate, but that’s something different. Paying £10 for an album that you may or may not like seems like an archaic and outdated model. Viva la revolution!


Not all streaming services offer the same services. Some are premium/subscription only (for eg. Qobuz, Tidal); others offer both subscription and ad-funded models (for eg. Spotify); while others are ad-funded only (for eg. Pandora, Vevo). Streams by subscriber are paid out on subscription revenue, which is fairly constant; while ad-funded streams are funded by advertising and hence subject to the amount of money generated by advertising in that time period (they are also usually paid at a lower rate). Charts like this tend to show a blended rated, as a result subscription only services tend to show a higher per stream rate but this only tells half the story. Perhaps Spotify’s per stream rate is the sam as Tidal’s but streams by those on the ad-funded service will bring the per stream rate down. This is why charts like this don’t tell the whole story and tend to muddy the waters.

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My thoughts are the same, never thought I would listen to the variety of music as I do today.

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Pretty much the same here. The move by Amazon into HD streaming has opened up a whole range of music that I may not have even tried with if having to buy a cd/LP to hear it. On the other hand having just listened to the excellent Billy Ellish in hi res I feel slightly guilty if my tenner a month is not giving her the rewards she deserves.

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