Streaming Giant Amazon Video Pulls Documentary Exposing Music Streamers’ Exploitation of Artists

The Pocket Gods have become an infamous name in the music industry. The disruptors have spent the last decade releasing a catalogue part indie, part performance art in direct contention with Spotify and other Direct Streaming Platforms (DSPs) and their low payouts to artists. Their work, to date, has caught the attention of Sky News, BBC News, and even Spotify Founder Daniel Ek.

Most recently the band released their documentary ‘The 30 Second Song Movie’ that has chronicled their fight against Spotify who at the time of writing pay out £0.002 per stream to artists (this used to be £0.007 p/s before buying The Joe Rogan Experience). As Spotify pays out royalties on songs at least 30s long, the band thought why not beat the platform at their own game and release 10 albums, each with 100 songs, each 30s long?

The band’s final album has had one physical copy released on vinyl, which remains for sale in their local record shop in St. Albans for £1m. The proceeds of this sale will be used to fund an ethical streaming platform that pays arts 1p per stream.

Released earlier this year, the documentary was removed by Amazon from its streaming service Prime Video March 11th without any notice or reason given after the fact.

“We’ve spent the last year making our documentary on music streaming & our campaign for fair royalties so we were excited when the film was picked up in January by Amazon Prime Video,” says vocalist Mark Christopher Lee “but we still don’t know the reasons why all they have told us is that is does not fit their content guidelines despite it passing all their guidelines in January so not sure what has changed.”

While no reason has been given for the film’s removal from Amazon Video, it is worth noting that Amazon also owns and operates its own music streaming platform – Amazon Music.  

“We are passionate about this issue and we thank Amazon for their initial interest but, as we want to get the message out there to as many people as possible we are making the film available for free via our Youtube and Vimeo channels. We want to continue the debate and we hope the film helps with this and goes towards creating a better future for artists and songwriters.”

The 30 Second Song Movie is available to watch on Vimeo and YouTube now:

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