Tidal Denies Inflating Streaming Totals for Beyonce and Kanye West
A rep for Tidal told HipHopDX:
This is a smear campaign from a publication that once referred to our employee as an 'Israeli Intelligence officer' and our owner as a 'crack dealer.' We expect nothing less from them than this ridiculous story, lies and falsehoods. The information was stolen and manipulated and we will fight these claims vigorously.
As we previously reported, Dagens Næringsliv (via Music Business Worldwide) accused Tidal of falsifying streaming numbers for Beyoncé's Lemonade and Kanye West's The Life of Pablo.
The newspaper claims that the manipulation of both Beyoncé and West's albums were in the hundreds of millions," which has generated massive royalty payouts at the expense of other artists.”
The newspaper also reached out to the Norwegian University of Science and Technology who conducted its own investigation of data and discovered that "there has in fact been a manipulation of the [TIDAL] data at particular times.”
NTNU’s Professor Katrin Franke said it’s “highly likely” the streaming manipulation was done by TIDAL as opposed to an outside force hacking the system.
Last year, the same Norwegian newspaper reported that Tidal was inflating their subscriber numbers. The paper disclosed documents that revealed the company only had 350,000 subscribers when JAY-Z initially announced in September 2015 that the streaming company reached 1 million users.
Reps for Beyoncé, West, Sony, and Universal had no comment on the matter.
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