Cell Phones in School

Apple Inc. has agreed to pay artist royalties on music used in its music streaming service. The decision came after Taylor Swift threatened to revoke her album "1989" from the music streaming service. Originally, Apple planned to provide new users with a free three-month trial period before they would have to pay for the service. Apple said that it was not going to compensate artists for using their songs during this period, but Swift and other artists protested the policy.

Policy Would Have Hurt Budding Artists, Swift Says

Last Sunday, Swift announced in a post on Tumblr that she planned to refuse Apple access to her album "1989" as a result of its policy not to compensate artists. She said that the computer giant's policy was disappointing and shocking because it was going to hurt budding artists who were at the beginning of their music careers. After Apple reversed its policy, Swift posted a note on Twitter that she was elated and relieved. She thanked her followers and said, "They listened to us."

Swift has been fighting against music streaming services for some time. Last November, she denied Spotify access to all of her music and denied access to her "1989" album to music streaming services. According to Swift, music streaming services have hurt music album sales significantly. That said, Swift has supported Apple's push to create an advertising-free service that is funded solely by user subscriptions.

Not All Legal Matters Are Resolved in Court

Music and other forms of print, visual and audio media are covered by copyright and intellectual property law. Interestingly, though, matters of legal significance like this are not always resolved in court. For example, Taylor Swift's strategy of refusing access to her wildly-popular "1989" album appears to have weighed heavily in swaying the computer giant to agree with her. Sometimes, it all boils down to who controls the most powerful bargaining chip. In this case, it was the 25-year-old popstar Taylor Swift!