Monday, June 22, 2015

In which Taylor Swift has a point, and wins the day

You'll have read this elesewhere, by now, but Taylor Swift's gentle-but-firm open letter to Apple (alright, open Tumblog) does gently nail Apple and leave them hung out looking like greedy butt-danglers:

I’m sure you are aware that Apple Music will be offering a free 3 month trial to anyone who signs up for the service. I’m not sure you know that Apple Music will not be paying writers, producers, or artists for those three months. I find it to be shocking, disappointing, and completely unlike this historically progressive and generous company.
The historically generous company which, for example, could have quite happily offered a discount on iMacs to educational institutions but chose instead to create a lower-spec model.

But could a flattering approach, even from Taylor Swift, work?

Actually, yes. It worked:
Now Apple says it will pay artists for music streamed during trial periods.
"We hear you @taylorswift13 and indie artists. Love, Apple," tweeted executive Eddy @Cue.
Of course, it's not so much the candy coating of Swift's letter that worked. It was the greed-shaming of putting right in the front of people the idea that it was musicians and songwriters who were actually paying for that three month free trial, not the cash-rich Apple.

Being shamed by a popstar. Thank god that can still happen - but it's still shabby it took Taylor Swift for Apple to understand they were pulling a shit move.

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