Facebook signs Universal Music licensing deal for music, video and more

Facebook Offers Hundreds of Millions of Dollars for Music Rights

Facebook signs deal with Universal Music Group over videos that contain songs

While UMG is the first label to sign a licensing deal with Facebook, it won't be the last, as Facebook has been in talks with Warner Music Group and Sony Music Group as well, according to multiple sources. All told, such licensing deals with the social media giant could generate roughly $1 billion for the music industry over the next two years, sources said.

Through this new arrangement, users can upload and share homemade videos that feature music from the UMG library backdrop and, assuming the content itself doesn't upset viewers, the clips won't be yanked for breaching copyright. "We are excited to bring that to life on Facebook, Instagram, Oculus, and Messenger in partnership with Universal Music Group", said Tamar Hrivnak, Facebook's head of music business development and partnerships.

Michael Nash, executive vice president of digital strategy, Universal Music Group, said the partnership is an "important first step" demonstrating that innovation and fair compensation for music creators are mutually reinforcing. "Music lovers, artists, and writers will all be right at home as we open up creativity, connection, and innovation through music and video". If later music-based social experiences are deemed indicative of a track's popularity, for example, then it's easy to imagine a scenario in which artists and labels start pushing for Facebook and related "experience" stats to be considered on the Billboard charts. "We look forward to Facebook becoming a significant contributor to a healthy ecosystem for music that will benefit artists, fans and all those who invest in bringing great music to the world".

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YouTube, which is owned by Google, is reportedly exploring the launch of a new streaming service in 2018 to compete with Spotify, Apple Music and other on-demand music services.

Facebook, based in Menlo Park, Calif., is trying to get people to watch and share more videos on its platform. Earlier this week, the company cut a deal with YouTube on a global partnership that's expected to better monetize users of the streaming video site.

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