Taylor Swift's latest big victory may have been watching Apple blink after the pop star called out the tech giant for its initial policy of refusing to pay artists during free trials of its new Apple Music streaming service.
Apple's change of heart came after the 25-year-old singer posted on Tumblr that she'd hold back her latest hit album 1989 from the service. Its decision to now pay artists during its three-month trial period may offer up hope of finding a new model for the record industry, explained Shirley Halperin, of Billboard magazine.
"I think what we are getting to is a new economic model that really decides what the value of music is," said Halperin, the magazine's news director. "That is something that Taylor Swift put out there by addressing the matter in her letter to Apple. That is something that record companies, artist, majors, indies, promoters, everyone has been looking at this on how do you make money as a musician these days."
After the backflip from Apple, Swift turned to Twitter to thank both Apple and her supporters, telling her 59m Twitter followers: "I am elated and relieved. Thank you for your words of support today. They listened to us."
Swift has fought with music streaming services before. She pulled her entire catalogue of music from online streaming platform Spotify last November and refused to offer 1989 on streaming services, saying the business had shrunk the numbers of paid album sales drastically.
"Taylor Swift happens to be the pop culture sensation of the moment and she has been for some time," explained Halperin, on the star power that Swift carries. "She's on the road right now, she's promoting, she's very visible, she's on Twitter, she's interacting with her fans. She just has a very loud bullhorn which she can use and she is."
As a result, Halperin called Apple's reversal to now pay artists during free trials of its new Apple Music streaming service a smart and long-term move.
"I think it is in Apple's best interest to show that they care about the artist. That they are invested in the music business. That they are in it for the long haul. These are the things they will get from the change in course."
Apple Music will debut on 30 June and cost $9.99 per month in the US.