Hear-Like-Buy: Why Spotify Is Marketing, Not Commerce

You can’t read an article in the music press without tripping over somebody complaining about Spotify royalties. You’ve heard the chorus: Spotify is destroying what’s left of the CD market. It is cannibalizing iTunes. It is ripping off indie artists. And so on. So, you think. Spotify must be pretty bad.

But is it? Do you think of your music as a product or as a service? Examples of a product would be a CD or a download, or any physical package that contains your music. Examples of a service would be a radio play or a performance, or any act that conveys your music. Which matters more to you — the package your music comes in or the performance of it?

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