Yo yo yo. Any of you guys using Pump Audio to license your music may want to pay attention to a change they’re rolling out in their artist agreement.
Beginning July 1st, 2009, Pump Audio will move to a 65/35 split with artists, instead of their existing 50/50 split. This means that licensed artists will see a drop in their take from each licensing fee by 30%. Awesome.
I was alerted to this Wednesday by an existing Pump Audio user. I followed up with their Artist Relations contact, and unfortunately the bad news is true.
Here’s what they said:
“…this move is being made to support the growth of our business on a global stage…”
“We believe and will work tirelessly to insure that Pump Audio continues to be the top music licensing company for real artists. As we grow and succeed, you will grow and succeed right along with us. Pump Audio has always been, and will always be one of the biggest supporters of independent artists, and our intention is to see all Pump contributors make more money with us in the coming years.”
Well. Naturally, my gut reaction is negative. Anything that means less money in the hands of music creators sounds like a bad deal to me, being a creator myself. The prevalence of web-based music licensing services, while making some media placements accessible to the average nobody musician, is contributing to the overall commoditization of music, meaning that its perceived value continues to drop. And now, not only do placements pay less because the availability of music is overwhelming, but Pump Audio will be paying you a smaller percentage of those fees.
Sounds like a winner for Pump.
Pump Audio also practices Re-Title Publishing, which means they re-register your songs under different names with their own publishing company, meaning the artist receives a smaller share of the backend royalties. Awesome.
So. Be forewarned. I’ve gotta get back to my night-shift at the local minimum wage national chain.
By the way. If anyone has any experience using Pump, please let us know. I heard from someone recently who had a placement in a national TV campaign, and only found out about it when a friend told him he’d seen his song on TV. Apparently this was last September, and no money has materialized thus far. I’m registered with them too but have nothing to show for it. My songs must suck!