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Is Spotify Looking To Enable CwF+RtB For Musicians?

from the that-would-be-cool dept

There's been plenty of buzz around Spotify, the online music service that is available in Europe, but not in the US. Having played with the product, it's really nicely done, but there's always been a huge concern over whether or not there's a real business model there. The record labels have been notorious for burdening any useful startup with ridiculous licensing terms that make it close to impossible for any such business to survive (let alone profit). Spotify had said it was going to launch in the US, but hasn't been able to, and while the company keeps saying it's close, other reports suggest that the major labels still haven't reached agreements with the company.

However, what's much more interesting is this interview with Spotify CEO Daniel Ek, where he suggests the company wants to branch out well beyond the subscription/ad-based business models and start enabling musicians to offer other business models that sound an awful lot like the CwF+RtB business model we talk about here:
"We want a platform where we can [allow] lots and lots of experimentation. We don't know what will work for an individual artist. Some will benefit from scarcity. Some will benefit from it being widely available, even free. They might make their money by giving away all their music for free ... In the best of world, Spotify will become the platform where you manage your music and because you do that, we will figure out what kinds of offerings you're interested in. For certain types of artists, you might be interested in something unique. You might do a meet-and-greet. It might be that you want it on vinyl because it feels better. Or just go and see the show. Or have the merchandise."
Who knows if Spotify can pull it off (and if it will build this itself, or partner to do so), but this is a much more ambitious play than what's been talked about in the past, and while it's risky, seems like a much better long-term bet.
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Filed Under: business models, cwf, music, rtb, spotify
Companies: spotify


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  1. identicon
    Anne Mulligan, 20 Aug 2011 @ 3:13pm

    As a music buyer I like Spotify, but I think indie artists on Spotify get paid peanuts for streaming plays of their music. It's not like they can afford to buy silver after cashing in their spotify royalty checks. They can make some serious coin selling mp3 downloads with iTunes though.

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