The only comment I will make so far is to disregard much of the interpretation in the Verge article, as it is rife with the usual poor macroeconomics and contract comprehension. In particular, the following comments:
"Given the myriad ways Sony Music came out as the winner, it’s worth asking who really should shoulder the blame for the lackluster streaming payments that artists like Swift have been complaining about — the labels or the streaming service?"
The Verge, like just about every other voice in the tech world, has a knee jerk defense of anything tech, hence the author's instinct to blame Sony, rather than realize the terms of the contract for what it was: a start-up with no clout trying to negotiate with an established giant in the field. Of course, the terms of the contract are going to favor Sony - Netflix had to so the same thing, which is why Netflix (and Spotify following the Netflix model) have worked so hard to develop alternatives to the big studios (labels). The fact that labels take advantage of artists is hardly breaking news, and does nothing to mitigate Spotify and the streaming services. To date, there is little evidence that Spotify and any other streaming has any long term, tangible solutions to the troubles facing artists.
Which means that there is still a lot of space for libraries to step in with a better, more sustainable alternative.