In a discouraging sign for the future of PledgeMusic, the financially challenged direct-to-fan platform advised artists to “suspend” their campaigns via an email, which was obtained by Variety late Wednesday. Representatives for five artists who have worked with the company in recent months confirmed they had received the email; one of those artist’s campaign ended more than a year ago (and that artist remains unpaid). The text of the letter, which says, “We are working around the clock to resolve the issues at hand and will come back to you as soon as we can with an update,” is below.
Contacted by Variety, a rep for PledgeMusic had no further comment.
Over the past year the company has fallen behind in payments, although the situation has accelerated in recent weeks. Last month PledgeMusic acknowledged the lateness of the payments — it made a similar comment when Variety first reported on the company’s struggles last June — saying, “It is our expectation that payments will be brought current within the next 90 days.”
Last week the British Musicians’ Union announced that it had met with executives from the company on Wednesday, and advised artists to use other platforms “until such time as this situation has been resolved.”
Cofounder Benji Rogers, who left the company in 2016, told Variety Tuesday that he will be returning to the company temporarily “on a voluntary basis, as an unremunerated strategic advisor and board observer.” His return was met with enthusiasm online, as many musicians and executives have told Variety of their positive experiences with Pledge before last year.
Wednesday’s letter reads:
To our artist community,
We wanted to let you know that in light of our previous statement (https://www.pledgemusic.com/blog/a-statement-from-pledgemusic) we have decided that it would be appropriate to suspend Pledging on on all active campaigns until further notice.
We are working around the clock to resolve the issues at hand and will come back to you as soon as we can with an update.
We are deeply sorry for any difficulties that this brings and can assure you that we are doing everything in our power to get things back on track.