Spotify’s 2021 royalty report paints a rose-tinted vision of the music streaming industry


Spotify is continuing its energy to give some transparency to musicians who are disappointed with its streaming prices. The organization current its “Loud & Clear” web page now, offering a breakdown of some 2021 metrics for how artists, publishers, and rights holders in fact make funds off Spotify streams.

As one could count on, Spotify chooses to get in touch with out right here are constructive enhancements above 2020. Spotify paid out over $7 billion to artists, labels, and the other relocating parts of the songs sector past calendar year, up from $5 billion past year. Over 16,500 artists’ catalogs gained at the very least $50,000 in royalties in 2021, in comparison to 13,400 in 2020, and above 1,000 artists cracked $1 million from Spotify streaming for the first time (compared to 870 artists hitting that substantial watermark past yr). Meanwhile, more than 52,600 artists acquired at least $10,000 from Spotify streams past 12 months, when compared to 42,500 in 2020.

And like past year, there’s nonetheless a calculator where artists (and admirers) can input their month to month listener count or song streams to see how their stats compare to the rest of Spotify.

Of system, Spotify appears to be specifically choosing numbers that showcase its contributions to the audio market in the ideal light-weight — almost nothing on the Loud & Very clear internet site portrays Spotify’s royalty rates as just about anything other than a net favourable for the business, a little something that musicians plainly really do not see eye to eye on (as a latest protest in LA reveals).

Spotify’s site emphasizes these big wins, but is quieter at highlighting the context of the much bigger quantity of artists who aren’t pulling in 1000’s of pounds just about every yr from the streamer. In accordance to Spotify, there are around 8 million artists on its system, of which about 2.6 million have uploaded at the very least ten tracks. And of these 2.6 million artists, only 165,000 of them averaging at least 10,000 streams a month — compared to the 52,600 artists that Spotify says made at the very least $10,000 through its system final 12 months, a gulf that speaks to the spectrum of results on the system.

The all round advancement is encouraging — but as Spotify grows additional preferred, the relative quantities for “success” shift. And specified that Spotify divvies out earnings based mostly on how properly a music or artist does as opposed to the rest of the platform, it does not just matter how popular an artist’s catalog is — it is how well-liked it is in contrast to anything else on Spotify. The firm calls out as an example that around 230,000 music broke 1 million streams in 2021, something that would have been a rarified accomplishment again in the service’s before days when it experienced significantly much less listeners.

Spotify’s greater transparency is a fantastic issue, especially as the music field continues to keep streaming platforms to escalating scrutiny about how they pay artists. But there is plainly nonetheless a ton of work to be performed in translating streaming new music results into financial accomplishment for most artists on the system.

Correction March 24th, 12:10pm: This article originally said that Spotify did not deliver context for the variety of full artists on its system when compared to its income goalposts. That facts has been added to this post. We regret the mistake.


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