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Apple Music Takes Major PR Blows, Rivals Find Common Ground, & the Government Wades In (Soundcheck)

Posted by Glen Sears | July 27, 2015 9:22 am | No Comments

apple music jim dalrymple soundcheck

Story of the Week

Apple Music Faces Major PR Problems
Read More: http://for.tn/1MRW3UP, http://bit.ly/1MRWgaG
Last week Apple Music, previously thought to be cornering huge new portions of the market, was hit with a 1-2 punch of bad PR.

First, U.S. Senator Al Franken (D-Minn.) called for a federal investigation into Apple Music and the App Store’s pricing practices. Apple takes a 30 percent cut of all purchases within the App store. Developers are also not allowed to inform consumers within their App pages that the same service can be purchased on their website, cutting Apple out of the equation. Rules also prohibit apps from including a link to their websites and from mentioning other platforms like Google Play.

“I am concerned about certain business practices that have the potential to limit choices and raise prices for consumers.” – Sen. Al Franken

Second, Jim Dalrymple (former Macworld news editor and tentpole Apple supporter) very publicly dropped Apple Music after an iTunes library bug wiped out large parts of his music library. “At some point, enough is enough. That time has come for me—Apple Music is just too much of a hassle to be bothered with. Nobody I’ve spoken at Apple or outside the company has any idea how to fix it, so the chances of a positive outcome seem slim to none…Apple music is a nightmare, and I’m done with it.”

While Dalrymple later received support directly from Apple HQ and revived “99 percent of my music back,” the bad publicity was already at a fever pitch after being picked up by every tech and music blog imaginable. Not a great week to be Apple.

Other Important Headlines

Spotify Adds Discover Weekly Personalized Playlists – Spotify has launched Discover Weekly, a two-hour custom playlist of music recommendations, based on the user’s library and listening patterns. Read More

Beatport Will Bring Videos, Curated Playlists to Spotify – Despite being competitors, the deal opens up opportunities for highly-lucrative music video and live streaming partnerships. “We’re not just in the streaming or download business, but heavily focused on video.” Read More

Pandora Revenue Rises 30.5% on Higher Advertising Sales – Online music streaming company Pandora Media Inc raised its full year forecast and reported better-than-expected second quarter revenue as it signed up more subscribers and increased its advertising revenue. Read More

Billboard’s First-Ever Nashville Top 50 Power Players List Revealed – Like its other Top 50 lists, Billboard ranks the most highly-powered individuals in the $830 million genre for the first time. Read More

Amazon Now Selling Concert Tickets Without the Extra Charges – As part of its attempt to get into the ticketing business, Amazon is selling tickets to an upcoming festival sans the obnoxious service charge. Read More

SESAC Settles Anti-Trust Dispute With US Radio Industry – The smaller, commercially-owned performing rights organization has reached a settlement with the Radio Music Licensing Committee which includes agreeing to allow a third-party arbitration panel to settle future royalty disputes. Read More

Government Opens Consultation on Tougher Sentences for Online Copyright Infringement – The government announced this weekend that it is launching a consultation on plans to increase the potential jail terms for commercial-scale online copyright infringement to ten years from the current two, which would bring the penalties for commercial piracy operations based on the net in line with the penalties for pirating physical goods. Read More

Also last week, Grooveshark co-founder Josh Greenberg was found dead in his Florida home. He was 28 years old. There was no immediate sign of foul play, injury, drug use, or suicide. Our sympathies go out to his friends and family.

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