Tidal accuses Apple of draconian Drake blackout
As the Verge reports, Tidal were streaming Lil Wayne’s brilliantly titled Lil Weezyana Fest in New Orleans when the stream cut out just as Drake was about to take the stage.
The video feed was replaced with a pointed message: “Apple is interfering with artistry and will not allow this artist to stream. Sorry for Big Brother’s inconvenience.”
Apple has recently launched its own music streaming service, and has a $US19 million exclusivity deal with Drake. If it is true, it’s a pretty harsh move from Apple, with all proceeds from the concert going towards those still recovering from Hurricane Katrina, and Drake only performing two songs.
The NY Post is also claiming that Apple sent Tidal a letter threatening to sue for up to $US20 million if the stream went ahead.
There was another twist in the feud though, with Buzzfeed claiming it was Drake’s manager, rather than Apple, that pulled the stream.
“Apple doesn’t have the power to stop us from being part of a live stream,” the manager says. “[Tidal] saw the opportunity to take a situation and spin it in their favour as a publicity stunt.”
Tidal hit back at these allegations, saying there’s proof but they won’t release it.
“We have all the email receipts and written correspondence that took place with said blocked performance,” a statement to the Verge said.
“That being said we choose to keep it classy.”
Whichever side is telling the truth, it looks like the cut-throat music streaming competition has been taken to a new level.