Spotify announced that it removed the works of some of the most popular comedians on its platform, including Tiffany Haddish, Kevin Hart, Jim Gaffigan, and John Mulaney, because of dispute in royalties.

Spotify Removes the Work of Popular Comedians

According to The Wall Street Journal, several popular entertainers want to be compensated every time their jokes are played on streaming platforms like Spotify, SiriusXM, YouTube, and radio. 

Comedians who want to secure their jokes and stand-up specials are backed by Spoken Giants, a global rights administration company. Spoke Giants are working to ensure that comedians and other entertainers are compensated for their content. 

Comedians are often paid by their distributor or their label together with digital performance rights organization SoundExchange. This happens whenever a digital service like Spotify plays its content.

Also Read: Spotify Tool Promotes Songs for Wider Reach in Exchange for Lower Royalty Rates

However, the artists are not paid by the platform for writing their content, and Spoke Giants said they are working to correct that.

After not coming up with a mutual decision with Spoke Giants, Spotify removed hundreds of content from the popular comedians.

In a statement to The Wall Street Journal, Spotify stated that it already paid the comedians a significant amount of money for their work. They would like to continue to keep working with the said talents.

According to The Verge, it is still not clear whether Spotify and Spoke Giants will reach an agreement with the royalties or if the content of the popular comedians will return on the streaming platform.

Spotify is expecting to have more than 400 million users by the end of 2021, and the affected comedians will not enjoy the massive amounts of visibility on the platform.

Spotify's Royalty Payment System

According to Variety, Spotify created Loud and Clear as a way to let the public know about its royalty payment system. It is a straightforward explanation of how the payment system on the platform work.

The 'Loud and Clear' feature was launched after Spotify was accused of undervaluing the artists on the platform.

The feature does not include the names of the artists. Loud and Clear is Spotify's way of being transparent with its data and sharing that data with the public. It also breaks down the royalty system, the whole process, and the players.

Spotify stated that there is no fixed amount paid per stream to every artist regarding its royalty payment system.

It is based on numerous factors that are unique for every artist. When you see one saying that they made a specific amount of money on a specific number of streams, that is their personal number, and it does not mean it will apply to other artists.

Spotify added that the platform does not pay the artists directly. What it does is that it pays the rights holder first, which is the entity that owns the rights to the artist's music, may they be an individual or a music label, but not the artist themselves.

The rights holder is the one that determines who the streaming revenue generated by the artist's catalog at Spotify is distributed, from the labels, collaborators, producers, distributors, managers, and more.

Spotify can't say how much money an artist gets from the streaming royalties because the company does not know.

Earlier this year, the United Kingdom parliament released a statement ordering Spotify and Apple Music to give artists half of the royalties. However, Spotify did not respond to the parliament's request.

Related Article: Apple Music Reveals it Pay a Penny Per Stream to Artists, Putting Spotlight on Spotify's Payment Issue

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Written by Sophie Webster

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