Your Weekly Playlist News Update [18 July 2018]

Your weekly playlist news update [Published 18 July 2018]

Australia Wants to Impose ‘Culture Quotas’ on Streaming Music Services

Digital Music News reports that quotas, according to APRA AMCOS and SPA, will help develop local Australian artists.  But why are they forcing streaming services to spend money to do it?
Australia’s music, TV, and film industries have teamed up to lobby the Commonwealth government for updated streaming service content rules.
In a joint submission to a Senate inquiry into Australian content on broadcast, radio, and streaming services, Screen Producers Australia (SPA) and APRA AMCOS have called on the government to introduce quotas for streaming services.  If updated, the rules would help promote more Australian content.
Both associations want forced ‘culture quotas’ on streaming services which would strengthen their respective industries. Broadcast radio quotas have existed in the country since 1942.  Television quotas were first introduced in 1961.  Currently, no such quotas exist for streaming services like Netflix and Spotify.
SPA and APRA AMCOS have submitted two ideas
1. The government should impose quotas on streaming services similar to those already in place for radio and TV.
2. Streaming services must spend 10% of their revenue to support local production.
According to both associations, this would ensure the survival of Australia’s entertainment industries.
Read more here.

Smart Speaker Installations Will Cross 100 Million This Year Alone — and Amazon Music Can’t Wait

A new report from Canalys suggests that the number of smart speakers installed in homes across the world could surpass 100 million by the end of 2018.
That’s a remarkable period of growth, considering that less than 50 million smart speakers were installed in homes at the end of 2017.
It’s also a potential game-changer for the streaming music race.  Currently, Apple Music is in the passing lane against Spotify.  But Amazon Music is a solid bet to win this race long-term, or at least run head-to-head with Apple Music.
And the reason is simplicity.  Apple Music pulls from hundreds of millions of pre-existing customers.  It’s another option to select.  Now, Amazon is playing the same game — with smart speakers potentially changing that game in their favor. Read more here.

Major Labels Are Upset That They Aren’t Getting More Songs Onto Spotify Playlists

Deutsche Bank’s analysts recently reported that the top three record labels are not happy that Spotify doesn’t include enough of their songs in its curated playlists.
If playlists are the new radio, then Spotify controls one of the biggest broadcast towers in the world.  Its curated playlists can make-or-break an artist, keep a legacy career alive, or destroy an artist’s earnings overnight (see XXXTentacion).
The songs on playlists are chosen by algorithms or hand-picked by employees.  Many previously unknown artists have found mainstream success after being featuring in a curated playlist with millions of followers.
The curated playlists currently account for 30 percent of the streaming platform’s plays according to one estimate, and that percentage is growing.
This presents a problem for Warner, Sony and Universal. The three labels are apparently upset that their music is not included on these lists frequently enough — at least according to one prominent Wall Street analyst and broker.  The labels fear losing market share as the streaming service’s playlists grow more and more influential.

Spotify + Patreon — Label = A Brand-New Success Model

Spotify isn’t signing artists, and neither is Patreon. Which is exactly the point.
If you aren’t a die-hard Amanda Palmer fan, you probably didn’t even notice.  But since smashing Kickstarter records in 2012, Palmer has effectively built a viable, high-revenue direct-to-fan enterprise.  In the process, Amanda Palmer the artist has evolved into Amanda Palmer the business.
And here’s the quick history of Amanda Palmer, Inc.  Back in 2012, Amanda Palmer shocked the industry/world with a $1.2 million Kickstarter crowdfunding feat.  She then parlayed that success into other crowdfunding, fan-supported initiatives, including an ultra-successful account on Patreon.
In total, Palmer says she’s made nearly $1.6 million through Patreon in just three years, thanks to thousands of die-hard patrons who pay money for every creative product that she releases.

Streaming Exclusives Are Back!

Back in 2016, Universal Music Group chairman Lucian Grainge banned streaming music exclusives.  But that decree only goes so far…
As of Thursday (July 12th), alternative/rock group Awolnation has released the brand-new remix version of their hit song “Handyman.”   Sounds like a nice treat for Awolnation faithful — but only those that happen to use Amazon Music.
The track is only available for purchase or streaming on Amazon Music, part of an exclusive fashioned as one of the website’s “Amazon Originals.”