It was recently announced that Apple would be getting into the streaming music industry. Now it seems like Apple picked the best possible time. Presently, Pandora (the company that largely corners the streaming market) is at war with many different musicians and record labels. Pink Floyd has even gone so far as to state, publicly, that "...Pandora is pushing the growth of its business directly at the expense of artists' paychecks..."
Yikes. Those are some harsh words. What's going on over at Pandora? And, more importantly, will your Pandora subscription still be worth the expense when all is said and done? Here's a closer look at the Pandora VS. musicians problem.
Pandora's Recent Purchase
It all began when Pandora pulled a major publicity stunt. The company purchased a radio station simply to point out the argument that radio stations pay less for music than streaming and webcasting counterparts. Pandora might have made a point with this stunt, but the company certainly didn't win any points with musicians.
Now, a number of musicians are threatening to pull music from the streaming company's grasp. If that happens, it will be the end of Pandora. But, do musicians have this much power?
Musicians and songwriters do have some say when it comes to rights to music. All they really have to do is pull out of the performance organizations that they are a part of. Right now, it looks like many musicians that are against Pandora will do just that. But, don't fret quite yet.
It's Not Over Yet
Pandora is stating that musicians aren't willing to negotiate enough. Musicians are stating that Pandora is taking too much money. Both are stuck in their own ways. Neither side has reached a concession right now. This means that any kind of agreement isn't going to happen soon. However, the future doesn't look bright for Pandora if a number of popular musicians decide to leave the company.
Pandora is definitely taking all of the slack here for streaming companies everywhere. Is this fair? Sure, Pandora pulled that radio station publicity stunt, but it was just to make a point - a point that was made clearly. Unfortunately, the stunt backfired and caused musicians to strike back. While Pandora may have a clear argument, the company will be nothing if it doesn't have any songs to stream. This might be the mess that Apple is walking into too.
Apple Is Working on Negotiations
There have been some reports that Apple is running into problems with the music industry too. Apple execs are currently trying to negotiate deals with musicians and labels before the company can release iRadio. So far, even Apple is having a tough time, but it will be interesting to see where Apple goes with the streaming problem. Maybe, just maybe, Apple might be able to work something out that Pandora isn't seeing.
Do musicians get too much from royalties? Is Pandora unfair? Will Apple stand a different or better chance? Now that the music industry is aiming at Pandora, Apple may just have a wide open entry.