A new blog post published by Spotify revealed that creators will now have the ability to boost their visibility in the platform's radio and autoplay algorithms. The post, which was shared on the streaming giant's website, detailed the "new experiment."
In this new experiment, artists and labels can identify music that’s a priority for them, and our system will add that signal to the algorithm that determines personalized listening sessions. This allows our algorithms to account for what’s important to the artist—perhaps a song they’re particularly excited about, an album anniversary they’re celebrating, a viral cultural moment they’re experiencing, or other factors they care about.
As reported by FADER, Spotify will not require any upfront payment, but artists will incur a reduced royalty rate for songs that utilize the feature. Spotify claims that they chose this pay structure so that any artist—big or small—can take advantage of the boosts.
"To ensure the tool is accessible to artists at any stage of their careers, it won’t require any upfront budget," Spotify's statement reads. "Instead, labels or rights holders agree to be paid a promotional recording royalty rate for streams in personalized listening sessions where we provided this service. If the songs resonate with listeners, we’ll keep trying them in similar sessions. If the songs don’t perform well, they’ll quickly be pulled back.”
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"It’s important to give the power back to musicians as opposed to having a middleman kind of control everything."
As of right now, the boosts will only be applied to the platform's radio and autoplay algorithms, but Spotify indicated that the feature may be rolled out to other parts of the app.
We’re testing this to make sure it’s a great experience for both listeners and artists. To start, we’ll focus on applying this service to our Radio and Autoplay formats, where we know listeners are looking to discover new music. As we learn from this experiment, we’ll carefully test expanding to other personalized areas of Spotify.
The new change has drawn criticism from fans and artists alike. Some users are questioning if the quality of their listening experience will be compromised since their music suggestions won't be as personalized as before. Creators, on the other hand, are concerned with the notion of surrendering royalties in order to amplify the visibility of their content.
You can read Spotify's announcement of the new feature here.