Taylor Swift criticizes Apple decision for not paying artists during the three-month free Apple Music trial (Updated)

Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift has written an open letter to Apple explaining why she has decided to not release her album ”1989” on the company’s new streaming service.

She starts off the letter by praising Apple as being one her “best partners” in selling music and creating ways for her to connect to her fans.

However, she then proceeds to criticise Apple for not paying writers, producers, and artists during the initial three-month trial period of Apple Music. She says that it is “shocking, disappointing, and completely unlike this historically progressive and generous company.”

The singer has not written the letter for her benefit. Instead, the letter is about all the young indie music producers, singers, and writers, whose songs Apple will be playing on its streaming service for free during the trial period without paying them a dime.

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 praises Apple’s goal of working towards a paid streaming music service, but urges the Cupertino company to pay indie artists for the initial three months — as they have the money to pay them — even though the service will be completely free for consumers.

Three months is a long time to go unpaid, and it is unfair to ask anyone to work for nothing. I say this with love, reverence, and admiration for everything else Apple has done. I hope that soon I can join them in the progression towards a streaming model that seems fair to those who create this music. I think this could be the platform that gets it right.

The singer concludes her letter to Apple by asking them to change their policy, as there is still time.

We don’t ask you for free iPhones. Please don’t ask us to provide you with our music for no compensation.

Apple has been criticised by many for not paying artists, producers and singers during the initial three-month trial period of Apple Music. Many indie labels have said that this move from Apple might just put them out of business.

Apple Music is scheduled to launch on June 30. After the initial three-month trial, the service will cost $9.99 per month.

[Via Taylor Swift]

Update: Apple has backtracked on its decision to not pay artists during the free three-month Apple Music trial period.