Contrary to what most blogs/media outlets would have you believe, Apple’s iTunes Match service actually does make money for the copyright holders, as Jeff Price from TuneCore has so kindly pointed out after receiving his first royalty payment from the service.
iMatch monetizes the existing behavior of the consumer for copyright holders and artists. Consumers don’t need to do anything new—they just need to listen to their pre-existing music.
Apple charges consumers a fee of $25 a year to subscribe to the iMatch service. Once a consumer pays the fee for the service, iTunes will scour the consumer’s computers or iPhone or iPads, and make all of the songs already on these devices available for the subscriber to re-download or stream on demand. If the song is in the iTunes music store, then the subscriber does not need to upload the song.
Each and every time the consumer either re-downloads or streams a song he or she already has, copyright holders get paid.
Seems like the Anti-Apple bandwagon just rolls up whenever they (Apple) bring out a new feature/service, without even knowing the full details of the product.
On another note, for copyright holders and Apple to be getting paid from this per stream/download of a song, the royalty fee per play must be quite small (I’m guessing 0.000001 of the applicable currency or maybe even less) considering users only have to pay $24.99 a year for the service.