Update: Apple has responded to Swift’s blog post.
Earlier this week, it was confirmed that Taylor Swift’s latest album ‘1989’ will not be available on Apple Music, Apple’s streaming music service launching on June 30th with iOS 8.4. She has written a blog post on Tumblr explaining her position.
We don’t ask you for free iPhones. Please don’t ask us to provide you with our music for no compensation.
Swift explains that she respects Apple for their innovation but says the terms associated with the Apple Music free trial are ‘unlike this historically progressive and generous company’. Swift says that under the 3 month free trial period, artists and rights holders are not paid at all for the duration and notes Apple has plenty of money to reimburse the artists for their work. Swift says that she is holding back 1989 not because she cannot support herself but as a retaliation for ‘the new artist or band that has just released their first single’.
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This is not about me. Thankfully I am on my fifth album and can support myself, my band, crew, and entire management team by playing live shows. This is about the new artist or band that has just released their first single and will not be paid for its success. This is 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.
Swift says her stance echoes her friends’ in the music industry who are afraid to speak up. They respect [are afraid of?] Apple, but not this particular decision. Swift concludes by saying that she likes Apple’s direction towards paid streaming but cannot support the terms of the 3 month trial. “Three months is a long time to go unpaid, and it is unfair to ask anyone to work for nothing.”.
Swift’s back catalog will be available on the Apple Music service and 1989 will of course be available for purchase through traditional means in the iTunes Store. Apple Music launches on June 30.