Facebook deal with Sony lets users post music clips

NEW YORK • Relax, you can now include a snippet of music by, say, Taylor Swift or Ed Sheeran in your Facebook post or video without it being removed.

This came about after Sony/ATV Music Publishing signed an agreement with Facebook, seeking a share of the social media industry's burgeoning revenue by letting users post songs from its artists.

For Facebook users, the deal means they will no longer have some videos, such as clips of wedding dances, taken down because of the snippets of music being played.

The multi-year accord is the first between the top music publishing company, which oversees a catalogue of three million songs, and Facebook, the parties said on Monday in a statement.

Financial terms were not disclosed, but the companies said the tie-up would give songwriters the opportunity to earn royalties when their music is used on Facebook and Instagram.

Facebook has now signed agreements with two of the largest music companies in the world, offering the record industry a bulwark against its bete noire, YouTube, as well as a new and potentially significant source of revenue.

Facebook inked a deal with Universal Music Group last month.

For Facebook users, the deal means they will no longer have some videos, such as clips of wedding dances, taken down because of the snippets of music being played.

The record industry is in the third year of a recovery, thanks to paid services Spotify and Apple Music, which have persuaded more than 100 million people to pay a monthly fee for access to a library of millions of songs.

Yet, most people still listen to music for free on advertising-supported radio, on-demand services and social networks.

Music executives are hoping to increase revenue from free outlets, which contribute a minority of the sales despite their large audiences.

Facebook was offering the music industry hundreds of millions of dollars, people familiar with the matter said in September last year.

It does not yet have the rights to host professional music like YouTube, which already has deals with Universal Music Group and Warner Music Group.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 10, 2018, with the headline 'Facebook deal with Sony lets users post music clips'. Print Edition | Subscribe