The Tide is Out: Why TIDAL Will Fail

JayZ, Madonna, Cold Play, other celebrities are pushing hard a new $20/mo Streaming Service. 

JayZ, Madonna, Cold Play, other celebrities are pushing hard a new $20/mo Streaming Service. 

Tidal is the new streaming service being promoted and partially owned by mega music celebrities like Madonna, Kanye West and Cold Play.Tidal was originally Aspiro, but JayZ bought the company for $56million dollars in January and rebranded the service.  It is yet another attempt at getting the streaming model "correct". Complaints about Spotify's royalty pay outs are nothing new, with celebrities and other music greats like Tool and Thom Yorke keeping their work off Spotify. Tidal is betting listeners are willing to pay DOUBLE the money to stream "Lossless" audio files to their devices. Lossless audio is barley noticeable, and several studies have shown people care less about quality of the sound and more about the quality of the song. The service doesn’t have a free option like Spotify; costs $20 a month for the hi-fidelity, or $10 for standard audio. The service has deals with every major label and will offer playlists & other in-house content.

Tidal will fail for many reasons, here are a few:

  • It is competing with convenience. People cannot be troubled to go out of their way for something they can do with ease. Why drive to the store when you get the milk for free in your backyard?
  • There is already push back for the hashtag-activism style of promoting the service. People are upset celebrities are equivocating the service to an important social issue. 
  • Royalties or Audio Quality: isn't the "tide" the current rates of artist pay?
  • The new service will pay the standard royalty rates.
  • Tidal will only pay more royalties on songs listened to at the $20 a month rate.
  •  Tidal still does not address terrestrial radio royalty exemption or other royalty issues.
  • "lossless" isn't working for Neil Young, it won't work for Young Hova.  
Miles Terracina: -chief lyricist and beat programmer of the electronic music group Mixed Use Media. -Founded the blog & character persona PunkSoda. -Creator of Sobre Sound -writes about music -likes barbacoa