The Oak Leaf says…

Spotify does not impact us

Shahra Madison listens to music on her iPad. Spotify recently took down Taylor Swift's music from their site.

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Shahra Madison listens to music on her iPad. Spotify recently took down Taylor Swift's music from their site.

Bailey Holmes Spencer, Managing Editor

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With the introduction of iPads into this year’s school curriculum, students have more access to music listening apps. Among the most popular are the streaming services Rdio, Pandora, Soundcloud and Spotify. Norfolk Collegiate students use these streaming services as a way to listen to music without actually purchasing the songs.

Recently, Spotify has been in the spotlight, but not for the reasons developers had hoped. Spotify has been in the United States for almost four years, but Spotify’s royalty rates have alarmed many artists already concerned their work will be devalued. Spotify is the world’s largest music streaming service (if Youtube is not included) and pays artists, license holders and songwriters an extremely reduced rate, an average of $0.007 per stream, as compared to other incomes, such as merchandise and concert sales, which bring in far more money.

Among these artists is Taylor Swift, who recently took down all of her songs from the streaming website, claiming she was losing money by having her work on Spotify. Taylor Swift’s action against the website caused an uproar in the entertainment world.

The Spotify website says, “By bringing listeners into our free, ad-supported tier, we migrate them away from piracy and less monetized platforms and allow them to generate far greater royalties than they were before.”

The recent headlines prompted The Oak Leaf staff to ask, “Is Spotify a widely used streaming service among our peers and, more importantly, is it ethical to use streaming websites such as Spotify?”

Currently, Spotify has 50 million active users, including 12.5 million subscribers, each paying $120 per year.

However, according to The Oak Leaf poll online, 57% of voters said they in fact do not use Spotify at all, while 43% do use the streaming website. The Oak Leaf staff has come to the conclusion that Spotify—ethical or not—does not impact the majority of Norfolk Collegiate students.



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