Independent artists could disappear from YouTube “in a matter of days” after the Google video service confirmed it was dropping content from independent labels that have not signed up for its upcoming subscription music service.
YouTube is about to begin testing the new service – which will charge people to watch and listen to music without ads, and download songs to their mobile devices – within the next few days, initially within Google.
The company has signed lucrative licensing deals with major labels Universal, Warner and Sony, while demanding that independent labels sign up to inferior terms or face having their videos blocked from YouTube’s free service.
Artists including Adele, Arctic Monkeys and Jack White could see their videos taken down. The site has become a key promotional outlet for independent labels of all sizes in recent years.
The move comes as Amazon too has begun to flex its muscles in ways that limit the content its customers can receive. Amazon is delaying shipments and refused pre-orders for some titles from Hachette, publisher of Harry Potter author JK Rowling, and home to David Baldacci, Stephen Colbert, David Foster Wallace and others.
It has also pulled pre-orders for forthcoming Warner Home Video features, including international blockbuster The Lego Movie, 300: Rise of an Empire, Winter’s Tale and Transcendence.
Monopoly. Plutocracy. Welcome Oligarchy.
Capitalism Will Devour. Absolutely E’erybody
Raise your hands, and kiss your ass.
Bye bye Net Neutrality.