Despite what skeptics think, the horrible roll out for Rihanna’s Anti album wasn’t a marketing ploy to push the singer ahead of all that Wiz/Kanye conversation. It was an honest mistake.
In case you forgot, Rih released “Work” Wednesday morning, but the watered down dancehall single featuring Drake quickly fell to the wayside after Kanye went on that disrespectful Twitter rant against Wiz Khalifa. Soon after, Anti was “accidentally” leaked on Tidal. Smells like a stunt, but Tidal says it was actually a computer error that caused the album’s premature release ahead of its alleged February 12 release.
Tidal’s Director of Marketing, Grace Kim, told Spin, “Look, we know what happened here, in the sense that unfortunately we still rely on systems, and there was a system error. But I don’t think it hurt [sales] at all.” Sales that are still too sketchy for me to understand. A Tidal representative reached out to Spin again and clarified that the systems error was caused by Universal Music Group and not the streaming service.
However Rihanna’s album leaked online, 1.4 million people still downloaded Anti in 15 hours, earning the project platinum status before fans could even learn the lyrics. It’s worth noting the one million downloads came from Samsung pre-buying one million copies and giving away free download codes to Samsung users. #NewRules.