Google wants you to believe that free music on YouTube doesn’t deter people from paying for the same music somewhere else. Pull the other one, it’s got bells on, the music industry has replied.
Google commissioned RBB Economics to produce a report, which we’ve seen in full, examining the effect of cannibalisation on paid music services.
YouTube benefits from exploiting an amazingly fortuitous loophole in copyright law, something not available to rivals like Spotify and Apple. It’s a special protection for a class of material misleadingly called « user-generated content ». The phrase was originally intended to cover things like your personal files on cloud storage services, but in 2017 it means individuals uploading other people’s music, so a more accurate term might « user-uploaded content » – they haven’t generated anything.