It's been less than 24 hours since Taylor Swift penned an open letter to Apple concerning the company's lack of payments to artists and content owners during Apple Music's advertised three-month trial. Typically, these kinds of open letters result in think-pieces, vitriolic Facebook comments, and heated discussion—and not much more. But this time, Apple has responded quickly and directly. According to Senior VP of Internet Software and Services Eddy Cue, Apple Music will pay content owners even during the three-month trial period.
No details yet on whether or not the payout will be the same 71.5% rate or if something different will be negotiated with labels, and we don't know yet if 1989 will be made available on the service, but this is certainly a win for artists of all sizes. And say whatever you want about Taylor Swift, but it seems that without her none of this would have ever happened. Cue told Re/code that he spoke about Swift’s letter with Apple CEO Tim Cook on Sunday. Then, he reached out to Swift. “She was thrilled to hear from us and that we were making the change, and we were grateful for that,” Cue said.
Astonishing show of power for Taylor. But worrisome that voices of entire rest of indie community didn't matter as much as hers.— Ben Sisario (@sisario) June 22, 2015