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‘More meaningful connections’: will Spotify’s updates mean a proper payday for artists?

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S ince its inception, Spotify has drawn criticism for helping to turn music from a cherished commodity into a utility. Critics argue that its all-you-can-eat monthly subscription doesn’t encourage long-term engagement, while its uniform, blank presentation of an artist’s catalogue reveals little of the hard work or distinct narrative behind any given release: the platform didn’t display songwriting and production credits until 2018, 12 years after launch.Last week, Spotify announced its biggest ever interface overhaul, designed to address these issues.

These updates, which are being rolled out to users in the UK in the coming weeks, include the ability for artists to add 30-second videos to their pages, target superfans with special releases, and give higher profile placement to merchandising and gig tickets.

The biggest change comes in the form of a redesigned homepage featuring an endless feed of short-form videos, which looks strikingly similar to TikTok’s feed.The changes are designed to create “deeper discovery and more meaningful connections between artists and fans”, says Tom Connaughton, MD of Spotify UK and Ireland. “Previously, you probably thought of Spotify as the best destination for listening.

This evolution is about bringing the platform and Spotify to life in a deeper way.”For artists who want to build a brand, creating a world around their music and showcasing who they are as a person is key for long-term engagement with fans.

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