There are all sorts of questions surrounding the release of Rihanna's "ANTI."
On Wednesday night (Jan. 27), Rihanna's highly anticipated album, ANTI, leaked on TIDAL shortly before its official release. After it officially went live on TIDAL, Rihanna gave away 1,000,000 free downloads of ANTI. She was able to do so because Samsung had apparently already bought that many copies of the album before its official release.
Speaking with SPIN, TIDAL's director of Marketing, Grace Kim, revealed that the leak was caused by a "system error": "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 it at all."
After the initial interview, another TIDAL rep followed up with SPIN and told the magazine that the "system error" was caused by Universal Music Group and not by TIDAL. Universal is a distribution partner of Roc Nation, the label on which ANTI was released.
Other than the blame being directed toward Universal, the details provided by TIDAL on the error that led to ANTI's leak are vague. Two days after it was leaked, ANTI was declared platinum by the RIAA.
Unlike the RIAA, Billboard and Nielsen aren't incorporating the pre-release copies purchased by Samsung into their first-week chart numbers. According to SPIN, the album was purchased over 400,000 times on TIDAL, and those numbers will be taken into account by Billboard.
ANTI was released on iTunes and other online music stores on January 29. The album's physical release is set for February 5.