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YouTube to block artists who don’t sign up to new music subscription service

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By Natalie Mortimer | N/A

June 17, 2014 | 2 min read

Artists including Adele and the Arctic Monkeys could be blocked on YouTube after the streaming site confirmed it would take steps to drop content from independent music publishers who haven’t signed up to its new subscription music service.

The premium service, rumoured to be called YouTube Music Pass, requires labels to sign a licensing agreement to be featured. Users of the pass are then charged to watch and listen to music without ads and are able to download songs to their mobile devices via Google.

The move was confirmed by YouTube’s head of content and business operations, Robert Kyncl, who told the Financial Times that 90 per cent of labels in the music industry have signed up to the service, but a remaining 10 per cent have yet to follow.

"While we wish that we had 100 per cent success rate, we understand that is not likely an achievable goal and therefore it is our responsibility to our users and the industry to launch the enhanced music experience.”

YouTube’s actions have already prompted some indie labels to appeal to the European Commission.

“Our goal is to continue making YouTube an amazing music experience, both as a global platform for fans and artists to connect, and as a revenue source for the music industry,” the Guardian reported a Google spokesman as saying.

The new service will place YouTube in direct competition with Spotify and Deezer.

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