Consultancy firm Midia Research believes there isn’t a successful fix that will please artistes, rightsholders, and streaming services

Midia Research MD, Mark Mulligan writes, “We have a streaming market in which none of the stakeholder groups feels entirely content with the current market and all would like a larger share of the revenues to flow to them. Because they all extract value from the same revenue pot, the arithmetic is simple: one stakeholder’s gain is another’s loss”.

“Any change to the system will leave someone unhappy. This is the impossible equation that must be balanced.”

However, Mulligan posits two “pragmatic alternatives” as models that might be the most palatable for all three groups.

The first is a “lean forward premium” model where a higher royalty is paid when listeners actively seek out tracks or play them from their collections. Followed by the second; a “penny per stream” model that essentially meters streaming.

“For example, if every stream generated $0.01, a subscriber would be able to listen until their subscription fee was used up, with the ability to top up to listen further or upgrade to a higher capacity tier…”

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