IMPALA’S LANDMARK 10-POINT PLAN TO REFORM STREAMING NOW AVAILABLE IN 6 LANGUAGES

Brussels, 29 February 2024

IMPALA, the European organisation for independent music companies and national associations, launched its groundbreaking 10-point plan to reform streaming in March 2021 and subsequently updated it in 2023. 

The plan calls for increased subscription prices, fair digital royalty rates for artists, changes to how allocate revenues, bespoke deals for fans, and a higher share for master rights for artists and labels. Platforms are also urged to work on solutions to combat streaming manipulation and end reduction of royalties for plays, privileged treatment in algorithms or other payola-like initiatives. The plan also underlines why so called “equitable remuneration” is harmful and should not be adopted, see also more here.

WIN and the global independent community unanimously endorsed these proposals aimed at creating a fairer, more dynamic market globally. IMPALA’s plan has been used as a template for strategic discussions, including within WIN’s working groups in Latin America and Asia-Pacific.

Originally published in English, WIN is now making this strategic document available in 5 additional languages (Spanish, French, Portuguese, Japanese and Korean) so that countries around the world can continue to be inspired by this initiative and keep advocating for the implementation of regulations and policies that prioritize fair compensation for artists, promote diversity and transparency, and ensure copyright protection.

Mark Kitcatt, WIN director and Chair of IMPALA’s streaming reform group stated“Speaking for IMPALA, we are honoured that WIN is making available the work we have been doing on reform of the streaming market to our peers and creative partners throughout the world.

Timing is critical. Changes to the streaming eco system are now being pushed out by the global streaming services which dominate the landscape. IMPALA started this discussion three years ago, in the face of a singular and monolithic model which was showing its foundational flaws after fifteen years of use.

We all use charts, monthly listener figures, end of year polls and an array of tables, rankings and statistics to help hang the stories we tell around recorded music. Unfortunately, they contribute to the mistaken impression that it is a sport, or a competition. Really, though, it is a conversation – the conversation of humankind, in our universal language.

Much of this conversation now takes place on streaming platforms. In the last few months, and for the first time since 2008, key services have begun to change how they allocate streaming revenues. Will these changes enhance the conversation, and help to move it forward? Will they welcome and encourage new voices to join? Will these changes fairly reward the adventurous and revolutionary art which typically arises from the independent sector? Or are we witnessing the tiny group of global streaming options yielding to the demands of a still smaller concentration of rights holders?

In the conversation that is music, those who speak most clearly, who reach us most deeply and who make the most daring contributions are those who have listened best – it’s in all our interests to welcome and encourage new voices with new ideas to join that conversation. The potential of music streaming has barely been tapped; the possibilities are endless.

IMPALA’s streaming plan expresses the hope of our sector for more platforms, more specialist platforms, more opportunities and new, inventive models that will correct perverse incentives and unintended consequences of the extant model. The conversation thrives on diversity and alternatives.

IMPALA’s vision is the outcome of extensive consultation across Europe. We offer it to the world as an open conversation and a call to action – we shall always be listening.”

Download IMPALA’s 10-Point Plan to Make the Most of Streaming summary version in Spanish, French, Portuguese, Japanese and Korean.

Download the original It’s Time to Challenge the Flow #2 Revisiting how to make the most of streaming, April 2023 full English version here.

Find out more about IMPALA’s work on streaming reform here.


About IMPALA

IMPALA was established in 2000 and now represents over 6000 independent music companies. 99% of Europe’s music companies are small, micro and medium businesses and self-releasing artists. Known as the independents, they are world leaders in terms of innovation and discovering new music and artists – they produce more than 80% of all new releases and account for 80% of the sector’s jobs. IMPALA’s mission is to grow the independent music sector sustainably, return more value to artists, promote diversity and entrepreneurship, improve political access, inspire change, and increase access to finance. IMPALA works on a range of key issues for its members, runs various award schemes and has a programme aimed at businesses who want to develop a strategic relationship with the independent sector – Friends of IMPALA.

About WIN

The Worldwide Independent Network connects and develops the global independent music community. WIN brings together trade associations representing thousands of independent music businesses around the world. WIN acts as a global coordination and support network for the independent sector, focusing on its long-term development and sustainability. WIN promotes a diverse and vibrant ecosystem with full market access and equal opportunities for all independents, through transparency, innovation and cooperation.

IMPALA – Independent Music Companies Association

Rue des Deux Eglises 37-39, 1000, Brussels, BELGIUM

+32 2 503 31 38

info@impalamusic.org