Spotify has announced that it will no longer be continuing with its Upload Beta Program for independent artists. This means that the digital music platform is effectively quitting music distribution as it will not allow independent music artists to upload their songs anymore.

Spotify's Upload Beta Program was announced in 2018 and was limited to a few independent music artists.

"Almost a year ago, we started to beta test a feature that lets independent artists upload their music directly to Spotify. Today, we notified participating artists about our decision to close the beta program, along with how we can help them migrate their music to other distributors over the next month."

Initially when Spotify announced the Upload Beta Program it was seen as them opening the floodgates as it wasn’t charging artists any upfront fees like other digital music distributors would. The news will likely be welcome by third-party music aggregators and companies such as SoundCloud which might have felt threatened when Spotify initially announced this.

The Swedish digital music platform shared the following as insights and feedback that led to the decision:

  • The most impactful way we can improve the experience of delivering music to Spotify for as many artists and labels as possible is to lean into the great work our distribution partners are already doing to serve the artist community. Over the past year, we’ve vastly improved our work with distribution partners to ensure metadata quality, protect artists from infringement, provide their users with instant access to Spotify for Artists, and more.
  • The best way for us to serve artists and labels is to focus our resources on developing tools in areas where Spotify can uniquely benefit them — like Spotify for Artists (which more than 300,000 creators use to gain new insight into their audience) and our playlist submission tool (which more than 36,000 artists have used to get playlisted for the very first time since it launched a year ago). We have a lot more planned here in the coming months.

Spotify has said that it is working with the artists concerned and distribution partners to make the transition smooth.

"At the end of this month, we’ll stop accepting any new uploads through Spotify for Artists, and artists will need to move their already released content to another provider."

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