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Spotify updates preferred distributor lists

By | Published on Friday 18 January 2019


Spotify has rejigged its preferred distributor lists so that there are now two levels: ‘preferred’ and ‘recommended’. Hypebot spotted the revamp on the Spotify For Artists webpage that explains how artists and labels can get their music onto the streaming platform.

Both Spotify and Apple now recommend distributors that artists and labels might want to use, Apple following Spotify’s lead in publishing a list of preferred distributors last November. Spotify says that preferred status is awarded based on quality of metadata and efforts to stop infringing content from being uploaded into its system. Apple’s rankings also take into account the quantity of content a distributor uploads each month.

Following the rejig of Spotify’s lists, Distrokid, CD Baby and The Orchard have preferred status, while Emubands, FUGA and Believe have recommended status.

The difference between the two levels, the streaming firm says, is that preferred distributors meet the “highest” standards on metadata and anti-infringement activity, while recommended distributors meet “basic” standards. Which doesn’t sound so good, though there are loads of distributors on neither list, so mere recommended status is still a badge of honour.

FUGA is also listed as a preferred ‘delivery platform’. Which is because FUGA, unlike the other listed companies, also offer content delivery as a standalone service for labels that already have deals (possibly a Merlin-negotiated deal) with any one streaming firm.

Of course, cynics might be quick to point out that Spotify recently announced an alliance with Distrokid, which will collaborate on the streaming firm’s in-development direct-upload tool for DIY artists. At the same time it also invested some money into the distribution business. So, of course Distrokid is a preferred distributor.

However, Spotify is keen to stress, “our investment in any provider does not affect who is featured on [these lists], nor does it affect any decisions about how content is treated on Spotify’s service”. So that’s alright then.

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