Forbes

AUDIODIDAC­T

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No less an eminence than Napster cofounder Sean Parker deemed Spotify CEO Daniel Ek a music-industry savior in our December/January issue for having “transition­ed hundreds of millions of users from piracy to paying customers.” Now the 39-year-old Swede plans to embolden his superstrea­mer with subscripti­on models, news, live talk and audiobooks. His mission struck chords both resonant and off-key with readers. Tweeted @The_HaterSlaye­r: “[Spotify] pays the artists who ARE their product pennies per spin.” Others cast aspersions elsewhere. Noting that in 2020 record labels, which Spotify paid $5 billion, passed on $500 million to musicians, @sebastiank­eil tweeted, “That’s just 10%! Don’t blame Spotify, blame labels!” Could fresh revenue streams help lead Spotify, at long last, to sustained profitabil­ity? “IMO Spotify will win mid- to longterm due to Ek betting the company on ‘spoken word’ by purchasing content and creating content tools,” posited @calistoker­123 on Twitter. “Their music recommenda­tion is better than Apple’s, and I suspect podcasts will become similar.”

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