Universal Leads Royalty Deadbeat Facebook Out of the Cold With Precedent Setting Licensing Deal

Praise where praise due. Earlier this year we said UMG’s effort to bring Facebook into line on music licenses should end up benefitting all songwriters. Facebook is a massive platform and the revenues to songwriters could be substantial. Watch this developing story. More likely to come.

Music Technology Policy

This is what happens when you stick to your property rights–Bloomberg reports that Facebook, aka royalty deadbeat, has signed a multiyear licensing deal with Universal Music Group:

Facebook Inc. signed a multiyear licensing deal that lets the social network carry songs and artists from the world’s biggest record label, Universal Music Group, across its platforms.

The deal announced Thursday solves a long-running dispute, with Facebook agreeing to compensate the company and artists including Taylor Swift when users post videos that include copyrighted material. The accord includes Facebook, Instagram and Oculus virtual-reality technology, with Universal saying the company would become a “significant contributor” to the industry.

The deal sets Facebook up as a more direct competitor to Google’s YouTube, the most popular destination online for listening to music. Both technology giants are battling for a bigger share of people’s time, and music rights could help Facebook give users new…

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