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Universal Music Group lands new royalty model that boosts popular artists

Universal Music Group and Deezer logos
Image: Universal Music / Deezer

Universal Music Group (UMG) announced a new streaming deal today with French music service Deezer that aims to direct more listener payouts toward professional artists. The changes will essentially count a single listen as two listens on popular tracks, giving them more revenue than smaller ones. Currently, platforms like Apple Music and Spotify (and Deezer) generally divide payments based on total listens, regardless of what the track is or who made it.

In the new deal, “professional artists,” from big stars like BTS and Billie Eilish to up-and-coming bands, will effectively see payout increases of 10 percent, the Financial Times reports. To qualify for the increased payouts, artists need a minimum of 1,000 streams per month by at least…

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