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CMA Music Streaming Market Study: What’s Going On?

 |  August 19, 2022

By: Tom Smith (The Platform Law Blog)

Music streaming is a fascinating industry, and many people were looking forward to seeing how the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA”) had used its wide-reaching information gathering powers to uncover any problems. This is a huge and culturally-important industry for the UK, and it seems to operate in some weird and convoluted ways. There were big questions to be settled about the strength of the major music labels, possible collusion between them, and how to ensure songwriters could make a living from their talents.  But then the CMA’s interim report was published on 26 July 2022, and it produced no strong findings at all.

Of course, it’s always possible that the CMA might investigate an industry and find there are no significant problems and no improvements worth making. It just doesn’t happen very often.  In this case, the CMA has found that the market is delivering good outcomes for consumers, and it does not propose to launch an in-depth market investigation at the end of the market study. No remedies are proposed.

What’s going on?