On 24 January 2018 the Latin superstar Enrique Iglesias filed a lawsuit against Universal International Music for “systematically underpaying streaming royalties” (complaint, Enrique Iglesias vs. Universal International Music, January 24, 2018). The lawyers of Iglesias argue that Universal Music should have paid 50 percent of the net revenue from the streaming services. Instead Iglesias was paid just a fraction of the royalties according to the rate agreed for physical and download albums. This remarkable case sheds light into the contractual practices in the recorded music industry and helps to explain, why artists contracted to record labels does not really benefit from the music streaming economy yet.
Artists in the Music Stream – A Case Study