Apple Bowed Down to Swift After Just 17 Hours

Apple Music will pay rights holders per stream during 3-month trial
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 22, 2015 6:04 AM CDT
Apple Bows Down to Swift: We'll Pay Artists
Taylor Swift performs at Rock in Rio USA at the MGM Resorts Festival Grounds on May 15, 2015, in Las Vegas.   (Photo by John Davisson/Invision/AP)

(Newser) – Taylor Swift’s open letter to Apple criticizing the company's decision not to pay "writers, producers, or artists" for music streamed during a three-month free trial of its new service has not only drawn support from other artists, but, it turns out, from Apple itself. In what Vanity Fair calls "something of an astonishingly late newsbreak," Apple has changed course: It will now pay artists on a per-stream basis during the trial, before offering rights holders 71.5% of subscription revenue in the US, reports BuzzFeed. The time that elapsed between Swift's post and the mammoth company's change of heart? Just 17 hours, per Vanity Fair. "When I woke up this morning and saw what Taylor had written, it really solidified that we needed a change," Eddy Cue, Apple's senior VP of Internet services and software, tells Billboard, noting the company heard the same "concern from a lot of artists."

Cue adds he called Swift to tell her the good news shortly after he and Tim Cook agreed upon the change yesterday, reports Re/code. "We have a long relationship with Taylor, so I wanted her to hear directly from us," he says. "She was thrilled and very thankful and excited to see how quick we responded." "I am elated and relieved," Swift later tweeted. "Thank you for your words of support today. They listened to us." Several other artists had come out in support of Swift's letter since it was posted yesterday on Tumblr. "A word from our future President. Right on. You tell 'em, Girl," Elvis Costello tweeted. It remains unclear if Apple's about-face will prompt Swift to put album 1989 on Apple Music. (Read more Taylor Swift stories.)

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