Streaming music service Rdio announces The Artist Program

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With a growing legion of music fans getting their fix from streaming services, there are always questions about how artists are rewarded. Today, the digital music service Rdio (founded in 2010 by Janus Friis, one of the creators of Skype) has announced the launch of its Rdio Artist Program. Pitched as a first for Australia and the world, the program offers a way for artists to earn money directly from streaming music.

Artists will earn $10 USD for each new subscriber they attract to Rdio through social sharing, and there are already a host of established and emerging artists signed up. You can see how it all works over at the Artist Program site. We spoke to Marisol Segal, Rdio’s Global Head Of Marketing, about the nuts and bolts of the program.

First, can you explain how the Artist Program works, and how the concept was born?
This program was born for one simple reason – we want to support artists. Artists are the most important contributors to our business and we believe they deserve to be paid for their work. We developed this program to provide an additional transparent revenue stream directly to the artists. Artists can share the music they love with fans and for any new subscriber they attract to the service, they are rewarded with $10 USD; it’s that simple.

How do you think this initiative from Rdio will address some of the criticisms you hear levelled at music streaming services?
It’s well documented that the streaming music industry has been at the forefront of the wider artist remuneration debate that has been ongoing for some years now. We’re excited to be the first to address this topic directly, by developing an innovative new model that offers artists a new way to make money at streaming music while connecting with their fans.

Who are some of the artists already signing up for the program?
We have a great range – from international superstars like Snoop Lion aka Snoop Dogg, The Scissor Sisters, A-Trak, Chromeo and New Zealand’s Ladyhawke, to emerging and indie artists like Australia’s Catcall and Horrorshow, to name a few.

What’s the next step for the Artist Program? Is there a ‘stage two’ in the works?
We’re focused on supporting the artist community and making streaming music work for them. This is just one step in that direction. We’ll continue evolving this program and working directly with managers and artists to create a sustainable and engaging model that benefits everyone involved.

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