Music streaming service Spotify will now allow artists to sell their music, merchandise and concert tickets directly to fans via its platform.
The move is part of a partnership with BandPage, a service that allows artists to create personal bios that can be hosted on various platforms such as Facebook and Spotify.
Aside from allowing artists to sell standard merchandise like t-shirts, they can also offer tickets to secret gigs or other exclusive content via their profile pages on Spotify.
Although this isn’t the first time Spotify has allowed musicians to sell merchandise through its platform, it is the first time artists have been given the option to offer exclusives – such as secret gigs and “experiences”.
It is thought that the ongoing emphasis on artist promotion from Spotify is intended to help improve its image in regard to music royalty rates.
The service recently took a bashing from certain corners of the music industry for putting the interests of record labels before artists. Musicians such as Radiohead’s Thom Yorke and Placebo’s Brian Molko criticised Spotify’s treatment of artists, with the former pulling his side-project Atoms For Peace’s album from the platform’s library.
The ensuing controversy sparked an online debate over the ethics of music streaming services, with various media outlets and music personalities either criticising or defending the likes of Spotify.