Facebook has agreed to a multi-year licensing agreement with Universal Music Group to allow its users to upload music to their videos. The agreement, which also covers Instagram and Oculus, will allow users of those services to upload and share videos containing music from UMG’s artists without having the videos removed due to copyright violations as they have been in the past.
The deal will help address the major copyright infringement issues around music on the platform. Facebook says this is the first step but noted that it would work with UMG to introduce “music-based products” on its platforms moving forward. 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.
The social network began talks with the music labels back in 2015, as it tried to figure out a way to incorporate music into its services. At the time, Facebook told The Verge it did not want to go the traditional route and create an on-demand streaming service. As talks progressed, Facebook focused on addressing the copyright infringement problems on its platform, a move that would make both its users and the music industry happy.
Facebook is also creating its own version of Content ID, YouTube’s service to identify rights holders’ content across its network, according to multiple sources, which would allow music labels and other major rights holders to manage their content on the platform.