Spotify continues its global dominance, adding 27 million net subscribers between Q1 2020 and Q1 2021, more than any other single service. However, it lost two points of market share over the period because its percentage growth rate trailed that of its leading competitors.

Google was the fastest-growing music streaming service in 2020, growing by 60%, with Tencent second on 40%. Amazon continued its steady trajectory, up 27%, while Apple grew by just 12%.

Google’s YouTube Music has been the standout story of the music subscriber market for the last couple of years, resonating both in many emerging markets and with younger audiences across the globe. The early signs are that YouTube Music is becoming to Gen Z what Spotify was to Millennials half a decade ago.

MIDiA Research

Facebook might be the biggest social platform, but it is on the outs with Gen Z. I wonder if Spotify will find itself in the same place in a few years? Despite owning the iOS and Mac platforms, Apple Music is, at best, an average performer. It would be interesting to see how they eventually do in a few years. In case you are wondering, Others include Deezer, Pandora, Yandex, Netease, Tidal, Qobuz, and more.

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When platforms mediate work – whether delivering food, driving cars, or being an influencer, trouble is only under the surface. And despite all the hype, the red hot creator economy is in middle of a crisis, notes its biggest (and best) proponent, Li Jin. This is worth a read — it is a long one, but worth the time.

Just as the gig economy mode of work brought about negative consequences, strong parallels are emerging between the gig economy and creator economy, rooted in the commoditization of work and erosion of worker leverage.

Read article on Li Jin's Newsletter

Most people think of the Covid pandemic in binary terms. You are either for masks or against them. Vaccines or no vaccines. But in reality, the impact of this pandemic is not as straightforward. It is what I learned when reading this piece in Elle magazine.

This story isn’t about Covid, but instead it the story of Megan Lundstrom is both heartbreaking and life-affirming. Lundstrom was a young girl from a small town in Colorado, who signed up for Seeking Arrangement and became a commercial sex worker. She managed to quit, find a way to move forward, go to college, found a mentor, used her connections to get actual data, and offered insights into the world of sex work. Since then, she has helped an anti-trafficking not-for-profit organization.

“Recently, the team discovered an unsettling trend in several cities: an upsurge in SeekingArrangement usage, which Lundstrom says is a direct result of COVID-19,” the story notes. I suggest you read this piece, and you will find it very sobering.

Read article on Elle