Yesterday, The Verge reported that the last album of The Weeknd, My Dear Melancholy, had a very strong debut at Apple Music, getting 26 million transmissions in the first 24 hours. The main single, "Call Out My Name" obtained in 6 million additional streams, surpassing the 3.5 million streams that the single obtained in Spotify during the same period, according to the label of The Weeknd, Republic Records.
Obviously, that would be a great victory for Apple Music given that it has around 120 million users less than Spotify, it did not have two exclusive music videos of the project and it did not have The Weeknd promoting its service.
But there is a turn! Spotify says that the numbers he initially gave to Republic Records were in fact erroneous. "Call Out My Name" actually aired 7.5 million times in the first 24 hours according to Spotify, and My Dear Melancholy, got 29 million broadcasts, beating Apple Music (as it should, given the 120 million additional users). This is what a Spotify spokesperson told me:
The Weeknd's EP My Dear Melancholy, received almost 29 million broadcasts of Spotify in the first 24 hours of release, while the single "Call Out My Name" received 7.5 million broadcasts in the first 24 hours of release. These numbers do not include sequences of two videos for EP songs that can only be found on Spotify.
But wait, there is more! I asked Republic Records, once again, how many times "Call Out My Name" was broadcast, and they said 6.5 million times, a million times less than Spotify claims. That total of 6.5 million is also aligned with publicly available data on Spotify's daily broadcasts, which say the song played 6,473,226 times on March 30, when it was released.
There is a possibility that there is a delay in the Spotify card counter, although the delays are usually not five days, and one would think that the label will know how many times your music was transmitted. You know, since they own it.
There are also bigger questions, such as why it is so difficult to count transmissions. Why does Spotify give incorrect data to an important label to promote it while calling it the "Spotify's biggest debut of 2018" and does not verify if that is true? And again, counting, why is it so difficult?
Spotify continues to face demands for royalties and record keeping, and the incorrect counting of transmissions from one of the world's greatest artists does not seem to help your case.
Many questions, not enough answers.