Tidal isn’t as big of a music streaming service as Spotify or Apple Music but it does have respectable streaming numbers. However, it’s under investigation for allegedly bogus streaming numbers in Norway. Norwegian financial newspaper Dagens Næringsliv reports that authorities in Norway have opened an investigation following reports that millions of Tidal’s stream are bogus.
The investigation is being conducted by the National Authority for Investigation and Prosecution of Economic and Environmental Crime. The investigation stems from reports in May last year that 320 million streams of Beyoncé’s Lemonade and Kanye West’s The Life of Pablo were bogus. It’s pertinent to mention here that Tidal is owned by Jay-Z.
Bogus streams would mean that the number of streams for each album would be substantially increased. This would mean more royalty payments for artists in return for streams that never happened. When the report about the bogus streams was first published, it was reported that Tidal was months behind on royalty payments to three big record labels. It has also been accused of misreporting its total subscriber numbers from 350,000 to 1 million.
“DN has quoted documents that they have not shared with us in spite of repeated requests. DN has repeatedly made claims based on information we believe may be falsified,” is Tidal’s response on the report, adding that it is not yet a suspect in the investigation. Tidal also said that it’s aware at least one person it suspected of theft has been questioned and that it can’t comment further at this time.