Well that escalated quickly.
Sony Music took the gloves off today by pulling music from Adele, Kelly Clarkson and others from SoundCloud. The recording company’s move escalates a conflict between established rights holders who are demanding licensing deals with acceptable royalty rates from the streaming company.
Billboard quotes an anonymous executive “familiar with negotiations” between Sony Music and SoundCloud as explaining that the takedowns are due to SoundCloud’s “a lack of monetization opportunities.”
SoundCloud is attempting to pivot into a pure streaming service which monetizes tracks via its “On SoundCloud” program, in which rights holders would receive a share of advertising revenue from pre-rolled ads on streams. Previously the company’s model involved charging artists a fee to upload unlicensed streams. Thus far, Warner is the only one of the three major labels to sign a licensing deal with SoundCloud.
At the moment, both Adele and Kelly Clarkson’s official SoundCloud pages remain empty:
Unlicensed remixes and reboots of Kelly Clarkson and Adele (both of whom are favorite subjects for edits) are still online and there are no reports of those being taken down at a greater rate than before.