Does Spotify pay for fake streams?

The streaming service Spotify was accused of creating and promoting fake performers – musicians whose names simply do not exist outside the service. But in the expanses of Spotify, their works are often included in the selection of curators, appear in thematic playlists and gain millions of auditions. In the same way, there are fake playlists.

Fake performers were on different playlists compiled by service curators. In the selection of «Ambient Chill», for example, they found the group «Deep Watch», which exists only within the service. On the playlist «Sleep» hit the song of the artist Enno Aare, the traces of the existence of which in the real world could not find either.

In response to the accusations, the Spotify administration completely denied the existence of fake musicians and fake playlists. But the answer was the publication of a list of 50 artists with millions of auditions on the counter, which, according to the publication, fall under the definition of fake.

An interesting fact: most of the musicians who fell under the definition of fake are in Sweden, where Spotify himself comes from. This means that either Spotify still pays artists a penny for its benefit, or Sweden is a super-musical country. Although it can be said that Scandinavian countries are more serious in musical matters than others – in 2019, Sweden exported $150 million in content, which is the highest rate among all other countries per capita (9.5 million people).

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It cannot be argued that Spotify pays less money for playlists that provide the so-called fake musicians for kits. This is unlikely, because some of these artists collaborate with Spotify through publisher associations or independent labels. Can a company hire artists directly and save on payments? It also looks strange, because it will not bring much benefit due to the simplified working conditions of labels from other countries. Thus, for example, Spotify and Sony agreed on a 52 percent royalty (3% lower than agreed in the first contract) on the proceeds for listening to tracks owned by Sony Music Entertainment. Under the same conditions, Spotify works with Universal Music Group, the most influential label in the world.

Experts say that a hundred on fake playlists, the Swedish streaming service was able to earn good money. But everything is relative. The total income that Spotify received from 520 million auditions of tracks by 50 fake artists amounted to $3 million. Given that over the past year, the popular streaming music service Spotify earned $3.3 billion, the figure is completely ridiculous. It seems that the won $3 million is not worth Spotify’s reputation at all.

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