Now that there’s a new streaming service entering the game, the usual suspects are coming out of the woodwork brandishing new opinions or rehashing old ones. Ben Gibbard threw his voice into the chorus a few months ago when everyone was shitting on Tidal, and now he’s commented on Apple Music in a new interview with NME. “It seems like the model for every streaming service that exists at the moment is based upon building a monopoly. [Streaming services are saying] when people start using our service, that’s when artists will see real money, but that’s just not how it’s going to happen,” he said. He went on to point out the similarities between all of the different streaming services, and expressed his skepticism over the impact of new companies entering the ring:
They’re all the same, their platforms differ, but in essence I don’t see much of a difference between any of them at this point. A lot of these platforms make the claim of being artist-friendly, but I don’t know any kind of small struggling acts that have been approached by Spotify or Apple or Tidal about how they could make their platform better for artists who are not billionaires, who are not millionaires.
There will continue to be multiple streaming services that people have become entrenched with because that’s the format that they know. Maybe I’m cynical but I just don’t think that one streaming service is going to put all the others out of business.
Steve Albini and Marc Ribot also battled it out about streaming recently.