Countless music lovers depend on apps like Spotify to play virtually any number of their favorite songs at the click of a button. But not everyone appreciates the convenient access to a seemingly unlimited pool of music. In fact, some music publishing companies and artists are saying that Spotify isn’t giving them their share of the profits.
From the outside, it seems like Spotify would be every musician’s dream. After all, the company offers unlimited streaming access to over 30 million songs, offline streaming and no ads for its premium members at $9.99 a month.
However, some musicians are claiming that Spotify is far from a dream and is keeping them – and their publishers – up at night. Last month, a music publishing company, Wixen, filed a lawsuit against Spotify. Wixen represents a variety of artists such as Neil Young, Rage Against the Machine, Beach Boys, Journey, Tom Petty and Missy Elliot, among many others in the lawsuit.
According to the 265-page complaint, Wixen claims that Spotify infringes on copyright by giving its 60 million subscribers access to unlicensed songs, meaning that the artists and publishers aren’t profiting from those music sales. Wixen is seeking a statutory award of $1.6 billion claiming that Spotify improperly licensed 6 million songs, which is approximately one-fifth of Spotify’s total catalog.
And the end of the lawsuits against streaming services appears to be nowhere in sight. Apple was also hit with a lawsuit on the same day as Spotify over the same issue.
Artists and music publishers alike are still encouraging music-lovers to enjoy their songs – but only after they receive their cut of the profits.