The realm of online music publishing faces a setback as approximately half of the workforce at Bandcamp is let go in the wake of the recent acquisition of the music platform by the music licensing company Songtradr, following its prior ownership by the gaming platform Epic.
The recent layoffs include approximately 50% of the total staff, including from the editorial section Bandcamp Daily, renowned for its coverage of niche and unconventional music genres and communities not often found elsewhere. Songtradr has committed to maintaining Bandcamp as a marketplace and music community, prioritizing artists’ revenue-sharing.
Bandcamp’s fundamental business model has consistently emphasised putting music at the forefront, a stark contrast to the prevailing norms in the music industry over the past two decades. In an industry characterised by streaming platforms offering meager compensation to emerging artists and the ever-evolving landscape of technology and social media, emerging artists and labels have faced numerous challenges.
Bandcamp has remained a beacon of hope amidst these challenges, providing not only autonomy and visibility for thousands of artists but also a means to cultivate a dedicated fan base eager to support music. This unique approach allows artists, producers, and labels to earn income in a music landscape heavily dominated by streaming.
We hope to see the platform continue holding true to its mission, and offer condolences to anyone affected by the layoffs.
Statement from Bandcamp United, a union of workers across all departments at Bandcamp committed to advocating for a better Bandcamp for all.