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BBC: YouTube’s $1bn royalties are not enough, says music industry

Monday, December 12th, 2016

Drake youtubeThe following article, which we felt was worth a read, is from Mark Savage at the BBC

YouTube has said it has paid the music industry $1bn (£794m) in royalties this year – but record companies have responded by claiming it is not enough.

The spat began on Tuesday, when YouTube’s chief business officer Robert Kyncl posted a blog highlighting the site’s contribution to the industry.

He said YouTube had distributed $1bn in advertising royalties alone, arguing that “free” streaming was as important as subscription sites like Spotify.

But record labels were not impressed.

“Google has issued more unexplained numbers on what it claims YouTube pays the music industry,” said a spokesperson for the global music body, the IFPI.

“The announcement gives little reason to celebrate, however. With 800 million music users worldwide, YouTube is generating revenues of just over $1 per user for the entire year.

“This pales in comparison to the revenue generated by other services, ranging from Apple to Deezer to Spotify. For example, in 2015 Spotify alone paid record labels some $2bn, equivalent to an estimated $18 per user.”

In his blog post, Mr Kyncl conceded that the current model was not perfect, arguing: “There is a lot of work that must be done by YouTube and the industry as a whole.

“But we are excited to see the momentum,” he added.

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