Songwriter's Corner|

Photo: Daniel Ek | By Minda Zetlin, | Ek is worth $3.7 billion while most Spotify artists earn less than $1,000. Is he the right person to talk about greed? Daniel Ek, founder and CEO of music streaming service Spotify took to LinkedIn on Friday to complain long and loud about Apple’s new policies for its app store in Europe. Ek may have a point that what Apple’s doing is questionable, if not actually illegal. But he is absolutely the wrong person to make that point.

Spotify has been publicly lambasted by musicians ranging from the late David Crosby to Radiohead’s Thom Yorke, who say the company makes it nearly impossible for musicians who aren’t superstars to make a living at their craft. So when Ek turned around and made almost the same complaint about Apple’s treatment of app developers, the messenger’s reputation may have drowned out the message. It’s a lesson every business leader or entrepreneur should consider before sharing an opinion in a public forum.

What’s Daniel Ek’s problem with Apple?

Apple has long taken a firm stand against “sideloading” – allowing users to install apps on their iPhones and iPads without going through the Apple App Store. Apple’s prohibition on sideloading has come under scrutiny, both in the U.S. and the European Union on antitrust grounds. Recently, the EU passed the Digital Markets Act (DMA). When full enforcement begins on March 1, Apple will be required to allow both sideloading and non-Apple payments on its devices.

In view of the new law, Apple rolled “new business terms” for developers who want to take advantage of their newfound right to have their apps installed and/or receive payment without going through Apple’s app store in the European market. Developers can adopt the new terms, allowing their apps to be sideloaded, or else stick with existing terms and restrict themselves to Apple’s app store the company explained.
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[Our thanks to Jamie Krutz for submitting this article:]

Photo: Daniel Ek

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