Many musicians across the globe, whose works are on Spotify are worried that while they are not making so much on the platform, the company has offered a juicy podcast deal deal to Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle.
They described the deal as “unethical”, given that so many musician have been on Spotify for years before Harry and Meghan, and some of them are yet to even make a penny.
The Archewell Audio podcast deal has triggered world-renowned musicians like Paul McCartney, Chris Martin, Stevie Nicks, Robert Plant and Kate Bush to urge the UK government to change the way musicians they are paid for their songs getting streamed online—as many are given less than a penny for every stream.
Some emerging artists who said they have worse experiences on Spotify, did not mince words in their complete disappointment in the deal.
Musician Harrison Rhys told the Star that the Spotify deal with Harry and Meghan was an “unethical kick in the teeth.”
“I believe what Spotify have done is unethical, we are only being paid £0.0038 per stream but they are able to pay out what is probably a multi-million dollar fee to Harry and Meghan,” Rhys said.
He agreed that anyone would accept the kind of deal Harry and Meghan got, but it is unfair to musicians because “this last year has been the most difficult one for musicians where many have had the majority of their income lost so I feel this is a kick in the teeth.”
Callum Gardner also told the Star: “I’ve been writing songs since I was 12 years-old. I don’t get paid from Spotify, it’s never broken even from the money I used to put songs on Spotify. It’s hard, I don’t know what we are supposed to do because they have all the power and somehow all of the artists have all agreed.”
Deputy General Secretary of Musicians’ Union in the UK, Naomi Pohl spoke was also quoted as saying “Most streaming revenue benefits large corporations like the major labels at the expense of artists making a decent living. The time has come for change and we are hopeful the UK Government are listening and that we fix streaming and get a better deal for all music makers.”
Meanwhile, Spotify boss Horacio Gutierrez’ has defended the Harry and Meghan deal, saying that it made numerous musicians even more, because their [Harry and Meghan] presence on the platform has created a “virtuous cycle” that got more people on the site, thereby helping struggling musicians.