Funded by: Research England QR Special Projects Fund and the UK Intellectual Property Office

Investigators: David Hesmondhalgh, Digit Co-lead and Professor of Media, Music and Culture; Hyojung Sun, Research Associate, University of Ulster and University of Leeds, Richard Osborne, Senior Lecturer in Popular Music, Middlesex University; Kenny Barr, University of Glasgow

This project, funded by Research England’s QR Special Projects Fund and the UK Intellectual Property Office seeks to provide objective evidence regarding the degree to which music streaming is providing fair payments to music creators of various kinds.

  • What is the size of the UK music streaming market and how is revenue distributed amongst its diverse stakeholders?
  • How is on-demand streaming revenue divided between the streaming platforms and the recorded music and music publishing sectors?
  • How do the revenues for on-demand streaming differ amongst different types of music creators?
  • How has the rise of streaming changed the distribution of music creators’ earnings and if so how?

The project was originally commissioned by the UK Intellectual Property Office, and extended through funding from Research England’s Quality-Related Special Projects Fund. It is supported by a Steering Group that contains representatives of a number of organisations, including the the UK Musicians’ Union, the Ivors Academy, the Featured Artists Coalition, Association of Independent Music, the Music Publishers Association and the British Phonographic Industry (BPI).

The report has informed the Government’s response to the House of Commons Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) Select Committee’s Report into the “Economics of Music Streaming”, published on 22 September 2021.   The project team also submitted written evidence to the DCMS Select Committee inquiry.