Axl Rose has been an outspoken critic of Donald Trump, frequently using his Twitter account to take shots at the presidential administration and more recently, question the First Lady’s immigration status. On Wednesday, the Guns N’ Roses frontman found a new target in Apple CEO Tim Cook as he compared the technology executive to Trump without any context.
“Tim Cook is the Donald Trump of the music industry,” Rose declared in a single tweet. Without any further explanation, it’s unclear what he has against Cook, but Rose could be expressing his displeasure with the rise of streaming music services.
During Cook’s tenure as Apple CEO, one of his biggest accomplishments has been the introduction of Apple Music. The streaming service hasn’t been without its critics, however. Prior to its launch in 2015, Taylor Swift penned an open letter explaining her issues with Apple Music’s royalties policy during its initial three-month trial period. Apple quickly changed course and announced it would compensate artists during the trial period, but the issue of royalty payments still remains a major thorn between record labels and streaming services.
During the first half of 2017, the music industry saw its revenue growth accelerate up 17 percent to $4 billion with $2.5 billion coming from streaming revenue. However, there’s a large gap between the revenue from paid subscription services such as Apple Music and Spotify Premium versus ad-supported services such as YouTube and Spotify’s free tier, which are more popular with customers but pay out far less to artists.
That being said, Guns N’ Roses have never boycotted Apple Music or any other subscription services.