The issue has been an ongoing debate since 2012 when Psy's "Gangnam Style", a song which earned worldwide fame that year, allegedly only earned an initial profit of 5,460,000 KRW (~ 4,800 USD) despite being streamed 27,300,000 times.
'Newsroom' then brought up a more current example - Heize's "You, Clouds, Rain", which maintained the #1 spot for streaming on music charts for the entire month of July. According to 'Newsroom', Heize's profit for remaining #1 on music sites and being streamed 6,450,000 times in July was approximately 2,700,000 KRW (~ 2,400 USD). While songs can also earn an additional profit for being downloaded on music sites, Korean music sites make it easier to simply stream music without downloading the songs.
When 'Newsroom' broke the topic down further, they claimed that each song earns 7 KRW (~ 0.01 USD) per stream. 40% (2.8 KRW) goes to the music site, 44% (3.08 KRW) goes to the production label, 10% (0.70 KRW) goes to the composer, producer, lyricist, and finally, 6% (0.42 KRW) goes to the artist.
'Newsroom' also reported that Koreans prefer streaming music than listening to music from CDs in recent years. According to 'Newsroom', consumption of music via streaming was 42% (of total music consumption) in 2012, then rose up to 61% in 2015. Furthermore, the reporter then compared profit distribution on Korean music sites to 'Spotify' and 'Apple Music'. According to 'Newsroom', 'Spotify' earns 30% of the profits from song streaming, while 'Apple Music' earns 28.5% for itself. Both American music streaming platforms also charge more per song than Korean music sites.
Clips from the August 21 broadcast of 'Newsroom''s 'Fact Check' segment have since been removed from JTBC's official SNS accounts. What do you think of 'Newsroom's findings?