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Spotify ends direct uploading program for artists

Katie Krzaczek
Associate Editor

Spotify (SPOT) is ending a beta program that allowed artists to upload music directly. Instead, artists will now be required to use a third-party distributor.

The streaming service launched the beta program for independent artists last year, which offered a free alternative to publishing music through a label or distributor.

As of July 30, artists will no longer be able to submit music through the direct upload program. Users will have to transfer any content previously uploaded to a new distributor by the end of the month.

Spotify said it decided to end the program to focus investment in other areas that would provide greater benefit for artists, including Spotify for Artists and its playlist submission tool.

(Photo: Spotify)

More than 300,000 artists use Spotify for Artists for audience insights, according to a press release, and 36,000 artists have landed a spot on one of the streaming platform’s curated playlists in the past year.

Independent artists who used the direct upload tool did not have the option to cross-publish content, meaning they would have to upload songs to Spotify, Apple Music (AAPL), Tidal, and other streaming services individually. Requiring artists to use a distributor or to upload through a label arguably eases the process for artists.

For artists that partner with its preferred distributors, Spotify is providing discount codes. On the list is DistroKid, which Spotify bought a minority stake in last year.

Katie is an associate editor at Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter.

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