How to Manage and Avoid Artificial Streaming

In our ongoing effort to fight Artificial Streaming (“AS”), Good Morning sends artists monthly AS reports that we receive from Spotify regarding your catalog. The report includes all the data artists need to monitor AS, take preventive actions to minimize this issue, and hopefully eliminate it. Please note that Artificial Streams are identified and reported by the DSP.  Good Morning simply communicates to clients what we receive from the DSP.

ABOUT ARTIFICIAL STREAMS

The streaming services work diligently to ensure streams reflect genuine user listening intent. Unfortunately, that is not always the case. AS can result from any of the following causes:

  1. Fraudulent behavior (when someone is trying to increase the stream count in order to obtain more royalties)
  2. Naivete with using so-called marketing/playlisting services which use unauthorized methods to generate streams.
  3. “Ricochet” AS when fraudsters play random tracks in order to appear like normal users. In such cases, artists are not the instigators of the AS, but random victims. DSPs are aware of this phenomenon and will not usually take action against your assets unless the number of AS becomes significant (it’s not possible to give you a precise number).

Unfortunately, the result is the same in all cases:

  • The DSP will withhold royalties for all such AS
  • The related tracks’ streaming count will not be incremented for any AS
  • The related tracks will be blacklisted from all official playlists
  • The DSP will take down the associated release(s) from their service, in the case of Apple, Pandora, and Spotify, this is a permanent takedown

Please note that repeated AS activity from your catalog may be cause for limiting or canceling your access to certain DSPs, and may ultimately result in the termination of your account as required by our need to protect our account’s standing with the DSP. 

IF YOU HAVE ARTIFICIAL STREAMS IN YOUR ACCOUNT

We will notify you to stop any such behavior. We are required to contact all artists with an AS count above 1000 (per track) in order to prevent the count from increasing. (Any AS count below 1000 is likely the result of other factors). This will be one strike.

Assuming that these are not bad actors, request that these artists immediately contact the marketing/playlisting services they have retained and have them stop their campaigns at once. 

In cases of significantly high AS we will notify you and may issue a takedown of the related assets in order to prevent additional AS. This would be n additional strike. In such cases, please do not redeliver the related releases until you have confirmed that the cause of the AS has been addressed and confirmed with us that you can redeliver the related releases.

We provide artists with a three strikes and your out rule. If you have three strikes against your account, we reserve the right to terminate your account. Subscriptions will not be refunded in such cases.

HOW TO AVOID ARTIFICIAL STREAMS

Avoid any paid or unpaid services that guarantee streams or playlist placements. These services are probably using illegitimate practices without your knowledge. Make sure you understand how important it is to avoid using bots, click farms, or any pay-to-play schemes. These services can threaten your hard work and put your catalog and account at risk.

Learn more about it in the following link, and share them with your clients:

VIDEO: WHAT IS ARTIFICIAL STREAMING?
SPOTIFY FOR ARTISTS: ARTIFICIAL STREAMING EDUCATION

ARTICLE: PAID 3RD-PARTY SERVICES THAT GUARANTEE STREAMS