What’s the takeaway from Taylor Swift’s decision to take her songs off Spotify? What did you learn and what did the public learn?
The public probably learned there’s something called Spotify, and that it’s not Pandora. What it has highlighted for us is we need to do a better job explaining to artists how streaming benefits them. The point that’s been lost is that Spotify’s the fastest-growing revenue source the industry has. There are many artists to whom, through the labels, we’re paying out millions a year already. Those check sizes will just keep increasing. I’m certain that if we can get the billion-people-plus that are consuming music online and move them into a model like Spotify, the industry would be considerably bigger than it is today.
A billion seems like a utopian number.
I think people discount piracy. We’ve grown accustomed to it, so [we’re] not really sure what we can do about it. But there’s a billion people doing it. If they contribute to a legal service of any kind, that’s a huge win. I’m not saying that we’re going to be the only ones, but we’re by far the largest subscription service, we’re probably as large as all of the others combined, so do I care about taking market share from [other subscription services] or taking market share from the billion people that are currently not contributing but still consuming music? We are in a growing industry, not really an industry where we’re fighting for market share. I think people discount piracy.