With the creation of a new music service that benefits artists who are already ridiculously rich, here’s an alternative idea:

Create a streaming service for independent music.

Here’s the idea:

– there is a massive number of sites that review indie music, right? So why not bring their reviews together and create a “metacritic”-type site that initially serves music based on the average review score.

As listeners have a chance to listen (or not), the number of plays on the site can take over as the main scoring mechanism.

– the creators of the service can start out by getting paid a decent salary, but nothing exorbitant. As the service picks up steam, the revenues go to the artists until all artists receive 80% (or whatever is agreed on) of revenues from their music. Beyond that, the site keeps the money as profit. This ensures that artists get paid _before_ the site makes any large amount of profit, rather than the site being based on pimping its artists and giving them left-overs.

I’m not sure if anyone has done anything like this, but if they have, I’d gladly support it. If not, I hope you steal this idea — or better yet, several people can steal it and create an alternative indie music industry on the Internet that actually pays musicians first.

The real question is: how do we eliminate middlemen and create a technology that is fair to the artist — in a way that is transparent to the extent that the artist also feels that their compensation is fair?

Neither Spotify nor the other streaming music services have done that to any satisfactory degree. That’s why this idea matters.