Why Apple Decided to Pay Artists During Apple Music Trial: Eddy Cue

In response to Taylor Swift’s letter, Apple VP Eddy Cue confirmed via a Tweet on Sunday that the company will be paying the artists for music streaming, even during customer’s free trial period of Apple Music. Today, Cue has further explained in an interview with Billboard why the company has decided to do so, while also acknowledging that the decision was indeed prompted by Taylor Swift’s letter.

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Cue said that Apple had originally negotiated deals with artists about not getting paid during the three-month trial period, based on paying them a higher royalty rate on an ongoing basis to compensate for this brief time. “But when I woke up this morning and saw what Taylor had written, it really solidified that we needed to make a change”, he said, adding that not only Apple will now pay artists during the trial period, but will also keep the royalty rate at the higher rate as committed.

Did you reach out to Taylor?

Cue: I actually did talk to Taylor today and I let her know that we heard her concerns and are making the changes. She’s on tour in the U.K. and she was in Amsterdam. I wanted her to hear directly with from us. We’ve had a long relationship with Taylor.

How did she react?

Cue: She was thrilled and very thankful. You can tell by the letter she wrote that she’s a great admirer of Apple and we’ve done a lot of great work together. So she was really excited to see how quickly we responded and thrilled that we did.

Once you read the letter, what were the next steps? How did the decision get made? 

Cue: The good news about that [Apple CEO] Tim [Cook] and myself can make decisions very, very quickly by talking to each other. It was something we had already been discussing for the past week.

To read the interview in full, head over to the source.