Taylor Swift To Apple Music: “It Is Unfair To Ask Anyone To Work For Nothing”
Taylor Swift penned an open letter to Apple Music urging the streaming service to reconsider its plan not to pay artists during a free three-month trial for fans. On Sunday, the pop star took to Tumblr to explain that her latest album, 1989, won’t be on Apple Music because the service will not pay musicians, songwriters or producers during the trial period.
“I find it to be shocking, disappointing, and completely unlike this historically progressive and generous company. This is not about me,” wrote Swift, adding, “Thankfully I am on my fifth album and can support myself, my band, crew, and entire management team by playing live shows.”
Swift reasoned, “This about the new artist or band that has just released their first single and will not be paid for its success. This about the young songwriter who just got his or her first cut and thought that the royalties from that would get them out of debt. This is about the producer who works tirelessly to innovate and create, just like the innovators and creators at Apple are pioneering in their field… but will not get paid for a quarter of a year’s worth of plays on his or her songs.”
The hit singer said she decided to rail against Apple Music, which launches on June 30, on behalf of all the people “who are afraid to speak publicly.” Swift noted that she still admires Apple, but does not “respect this particular call.” “This incredible company has the money to pay artists, writers and producers for the 3 month trial period… even if it is free for the fans trying it out,” wrote Swift. “Three months is a long time to go unpaid, and it is unfair to ask anyone to work for nothing… We don’t ask you for free iPhones. Please don’t ask us to provide you with our music for no compensation.”
For the past week, independent record labels have also criticized Apple Music for its decision not to pay artists during the trial period. This isn’t the first time Swift has spoken out against a music streaming service. In November, she announced that she was pulling all her music from Spotify after the company refused to let her offer her albums only to paying subscribers.