Hundreds of comedians are getting sidelined on Spotify.
According to The Wall Street Journal, the streaming company has pulled albums by Tiffany Haddish, John Mulaney, Jim Gaffigan and more comedians due to a dispute over royalties.
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The comics, backed by global rights administration company Spoken Giants, are pursuing royalty payments for their spoken word content from radio and streaming services, including Spotify, Pandora, YouTube and SiriusXM.
Comedians do currently receive compensation when a digital service plays their content, but are not compensated for the writing of that content.
The comedians aim to begin collecting royalties “underlying composition copyrights of spoken-word media,” similar to the arrangement that exists for songwriters.
After negotiations with Spoken Giants came to an impasse recently, Spotify removed content by hundreds of comedians from their platform.
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In a statement to WSJ, a Spotify spokesperson said that the company had already “paid significant amounts of money for the content in question, and would love to continue to do so.”
The spokesperson added, “However, given that Spoken Giants is disputing what rights various licensors have, it’s imperative that the labels that distribute this content, Spotify and Spoken Giants come together to resolve this issue to ensure this content remains available to fans around the globe.”