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Apple Music steps up the fight against streaming fraud

Apple Music has implemented a new policy that includes financial penalties for repeat offenders accused of streaming fraud in an effort to combat the problem. The company has also begun sending daily reports to labels and distributors detailing albums with streams held in review (via Billboard).

These measures are part of a broader industry effort to address the issue of streaming manipulation, which is the deliberate, artificial creation of plays for royalty, chart, and popularity purposes. This can be done in a variety of ways, such as using bots to stream songs repeatedly or creating fake accounts to inflate play counts.

Streaming fraud is a problem because it artificially inflates the popularity of certain songs or artists. This can lead to labels and distributors being paid more royalties than they deserve, while also giving these artists an unfair advantage over others.

Apple Music has taken a number of steps to address streaming fraud, including:

  • Implementing a new policy that includes financial penalties for repeat offenders.
  • Sending daily reports to labels and distributors detailing albums with streams held in review.
  • Removing manipulated streams from its charts.
  • Working with industry partners to develop new ways to detect and prevent streaming fraud.

The platform takes stream manipulation very seriously. Apple Music has a team of people dedicated to tracking and investigating any instances where manipulation is suspected. Penalties include cancellation of user accounts, removal of content, termination of distributor agreements, and financial adjustments.

Apple Music spokesperson to Billboard

Apple Music’s new policy has already led to a 30% drop in streaming manipulation. The company says that less than 0.3% of all streams on its platform are now fraudulent. Spotify has said that less than one percent of all streams on its platform have been determined to be tampered with, while Deezer has said that it finds 7% of plays to be fraudulent. However, it is important to note that each service might define fraud differently, and not all of them have ad-supported tiers which can skew the reported figures.

A number of other companies are also taking steps to address streaming fraud. In June, more than half a dozen distributors formed a global task force aimed at eradicating streaming fraud. And in September, Universal Music Group promised to aggressively address fraud and gaming.

Streaming fraud is a serious problem that the music industry is taking steps to address. Apple Music’s new policy is a step in the right direction, and it is likely that other companies will follow suit. By working together, the industry can help to ensure that artists are fairly compensated for their work.

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Editor's Pick

Abdul Raouf Al Sbeei

Abdul Raouf Al Sbeei

Abdul Raouf is a reporter in the Apple Newsroom, where he translates news into insightful and relatable stories. Abdul believes words hold magic and have power often ignored. You can find him between tweets or book pages.

Read More

Who are we?

Supercharged is not just another news outlet. We’re a platform on a mission to offer personalized and ad-free news directly to you. Discover more of Supercharged.

Apple Music steps up the fight against streaming fraud

Apple Music has implemented a new policy that includes financial penalties for repeat offenders accused of streaming fraud in an effort to combat the problem. The company has also begun sending daily reports to labels and distributors detailing albums with streams held in review (via Billboard).

These measures are part of a broader industry effort to address the issue of streaming manipulation, which is the deliberate, artificial creation of plays for royalty, chart, and popularity purposes. This can be done in a variety of ways, such as using bots to stream songs repeatedly or creating fake accounts to inflate play counts.

Streaming fraud is a problem because it artificially inflates the popularity of certain songs or artists. This can lead to labels and distributors being paid more royalties than they deserve, while also giving these artists an unfair advantage over others.

Apple Music has taken a number of steps to address streaming fraud, including:

  • Implementing a new policy that includes financial penalties for repeat offenders.
  • Sending daily reports to labels and distributors detailing albums with streams held in review.
  • Removing manipulated streams from its charts.
  • Working with industry partners to develop new ways to detect and prevent streaming fraud.

The platform takes stream manipulation very seriously. Apple Music has a team of people dedicated to tracking and investigating any instances where manipulation is suspected. Penalties include cancellation of user accounts, removal of content, termination of distributor agreements, and financial adjustments.

Apple Music spokesperson to Billboard

Apple Music’s new policy has already led to a 30% drop in streaming manipulation. The company says that less than 0.3% of all streams on its platform are now fraudulent. Spotify has said that less than one percent of all streams on its platform have been determined to be tampered with, while Deezer has said that it finds 7% of plays to be fraudulent. However, it is important to note that each service might define fraud differently, and not all of them have ad-supported tiers which can skew the reported figures.

A number of other companies are also taking steps to address streaming fraud. In June, more than half a dozen distributors formed a global task force aimed at eradicating streaming fraud. And in September, Universal Music Group promised to aggressively address fraud and gaming.

Streaming fraud is a serious problem that the music industry is taking steps to address. Apple Music’s new policy is a step in the right direction, and it is likely that other companies will follow suit. By working together, the industry can help to ensure that artists are fairly compensated for their work.

Share this Article
note icon

Did you know?

Easily add Supercharged to your Home Screen and stay informed on the go! Get instant updates and breaking news stories via push notifications directly on your iPhone and Apple Watch. Just tap the share icon, then "Add to Home Screen," and be the first to know.

Have a tip for our newsroom? Securely reach out to us and tell us what you know. Your insight and information are invaluable to the work we do. Click here.

Have a tip for our newsroom? Securely reach out to us and tell us what you know. Your insight and information are invaluable to the work we do. 

Editor's Pick

Abdul Raouf Al Sbeei

Abdul Raouf Al Sbeei

Abdul Raouf is a reporter in the Apple Newsroom, where he translates news into insightful and relatable stories. Abdul believes words hold magic and have power often ignored. You can find him between tweets or book pages.

Read More

Craig Federighi

Age: 54
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