How to make streaming royalties fair(er)
“Let’s reward artists who actually bring in and sustain revenue, not artists who simply have listeners more likely to listen to the same tracks repeatedly.”
User Centric Licensing: Making Streaming Work For Everyone
“We need to explore all ways of ensuring revenues are distributed on as equitable a basis as possible. Under a user centric model an artist would get paid based on the share of an individual’s listening.”
Streaming music is ripping you off
“If you subscribe to a subscription music service such as Spotify or Apple Music (…) you probably believe your money goes to the artists you listen to. Unfortunately, you are wrong.”
Throw Out the Big Pot: Streaming Pay
“If a subscription service simply aggregates all the activity on its entire platform and then pays out pro rata against it, the winners will always be the larger players.”
What would user-centric streaming payouts really mean for artists?
Could Spotify and other music streaming services answer their musician critics by changing the way they calculate their payouts? The debate about whether these companies should switch to a “user-centric” model is growing in volume…
A better way to cut a cake and eat it too
The current streaming model is broken, in the sense that there is no direct link between artist and fans in an economic sense. This is due to the way subscription fees are divided in the current pro rata model…
Subscriber Share: Why we use it for contributor payouts
For our new graphic asset subscription Envato Elements , we had an important choice. Should we stick with the traditional ‘big pool’ method? Or try to pioneer ‘subscriber share’ at scale?
What is Subscriber Share?
Each subscriber's money goes only to the content they actually use.
Subscriber share is an alternative way to share revenue from a subscription with content creators. Also called "user-centric payouts", the idea came from music streaming but is relevant to any subscription that gives access to content from third-party contributors.
Subscriber share challenges the traditional "big pool" (or pro-rata) method. With big pool, the revenue share is pooled, and divided among contributors based on total usage: i.e. more downloads or plays = more money.
However, big pool has been criticised for not supporting independent artists. To earn decent money, you need a massive volume of usage. Critics also argue that the pro-rata method is skewed by the preferences of heavy users over light ones, and is vulnerable to click fraud.
Subscriber share is more complex but arguably fairer to independent artists & creators. The core idea is that a subscriber's money goes only to the contributors they actually use. No subscriber subsidizes anyone else. And if you only use one artist, they get all your revenue share.
Subscriber share aligns a creator's incentives with where the money comes from: i.e. attracting & retaining paying subscribers. They can boost earnings in several ways: serve a small niche with unique content, or go for mass appeal. The key thing is to keep paying subscribers happy.
Subscriber share is still very new and relatively unproven. But as subscriber share pioneers demonstrate that it is feasible, broader adoption is likely to occur.
Fair to Contributors
Simple to Implement
Who's Using it?
Digital assets subscription for designers, agencies and marketers. Pays contributors 50% of net revenue using subscriber share.
Online music streaming service with “Fair Trade Streaming”. Subscription fees go from the fans directly to artists they stream.