Jay Z’s got 99 problems, and Apple might be one


Jay Z
Tidal could end up having a bit of a 'Hard Knock Life'. Photo: NRK P3/Flickr CC
Photo: Flickr/NRK P3

Jay Z has long described himself as the boss of the Big Apple, but right now it seems the Tidal CEO is butting heads with Apple and other music companies over an alleged multimillion-dollar “smear campaign.”

In a string of tweets over the weekend, Jay Z took issue with tech giants trying to make him out to be the bad guy — acknowledging that, “We may not be perfect – but we are determined” and that “We are here for the long haul.”

Although perhaps not if Apple has anything to say about it!

A series of tweets sent out by Jay Z. Photo: Twitter
A series of tweets sent out by Jay Z. Photo: Twitter

Jay Z purchased the technology behind Tidal for $56 million back in January. He launched the service in March, alongside co-founders such as Kanye West, Rihanna and Madonna, with an eye toward creating a streaming music service that would garner a bigger slice of the revenue pie for artists.

However, the tactic has backfired somewhat as the not-exactly-humble rapper has been criticized for creating a music platform that’s more about making millionaire artists richer than it is about, you know, making music accessible to customers.

According to speculation on the website Page Six, Apple is also taking subtle shots at Tidal by taking a long time to approve updates for the service’s iOS app. Last week, Tidal fell out of the top 700 iPhone apps for the first time since its March 30 launch.

Robert Kondrk, vice president of iTunes Content, has reportedly told executives at Universal Music Group that Tidal artists who put out exclusive music on Jay Z’s service won’t be promoted as featured artists on iTunes. Given how much of a boost Apple can give artists (such as Jay Z’s wife Beyonce) with the right promotion, that’s certainly no idle threat, if true.

The article further claims that after Rihanna’s song “American Oxygen” debuted on Tidal, technical problems affected her music on iTunes, meaning that songs were “scrambled and were out of commission for periods of time.”

Apple has denied that this is the case.

Given that Cupertino is said to be launching its refreshed Beats Music service this June’s Worldwide Developers conference, it would be hard to blame Tim Cook and pals for not wanting to aid a direct competitor, though.

Via: Daily Mail


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