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Common Music Group threatens to take away all its music from TikTok : NPR


Taylor Swift performs throughout her Eras Tour at Sofi stadium in Inglewood, Calif., on Aug. 7, 2023.

Michael Tran/AFP by way of Getty Photographs


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Michael Tran/AFP by way of Getty Photographs


Taylor Swift performs throughout her Eras Tour at Sofi stadium in Inglewood, Calif., on Aug. 7, 2023.

Michael Tran/AFP by way of Getty Photographs

Common Music Group has threatened to take away the entire music it owns from TikTok, until the streaming platform agrees to extra favorable phrases for its huge catalog.

Negotiations between the social media large and the world’s largest music firm have intensified as they’ve labored to hammer out a brand new contract, says Tatiana Cirisano, a music business analyst at Midia Analysis. The present one expires on Jan. 31, 2024.

“UMG is sort of taking the nuclear choice of eradicating all their music and making an attempt to show … that TikTok could not exist if it did not have their catalog,” she says.

Early Wednesday morning, UMG launched what it known as “An Open Letter to the Artist And Songwriter Group – Why We Should Name Time Out On TikTok.” The letter, one suspects, is definitely for music followers and tech watchdogs as properly.

“In our contract renewal discussions, we now have been urgent them on three crucial points,” the letter says of TikTok, noting the problems embrace safety towards AI-generated recordings, on-line questions of safety for customers and better compensation for its artists and songwriters.

“With respect to the difficulty of artist and songwriter compensation,” the letter continues, “TikTok proposed paying our artists and songwriters at a fee that may be a fraction of the speed that equally located main social platforms pay. At present, as a sign of how little TikTok compensates artists and songwriters, regardless of its large and rising person base, quickly rising promoting income and growing reliance on music-based content material, TikTok accounts for less than about 1% of our whole income. Finally TikTok is making an attempt to construct a music-based enterprise, with out paying truthful worth for the music.”

Compensation is the massive sticking level right here, says Cirisano. “I’d additionally level out that that is most likely going to do extra for Common Music Group as an organization than it’s for any of their particular person artists and songwriters,” she says.

In an announcement on social media, TikTok accused UMG of selling “false narratives and rhetoric” and of placing “greed above the pursuits of their artist and songwriter.”

“TikTok has been in a position to attain ‘artist-first’ agreements with each different label and writer,” it says. “Clearly, Common’s self-serving actions should not in the perfect pursuits of artists, songwriters and followers.”

Cirisano says the thought of TikTok constructing what UMG calls a “music-based enterprise” has some benefit. TikTok was only a place the place artists might get publicity and market their music, she says. However the platform and its customers are evolving.

“It is turning into form of a type of music consumption in its personal proper,” she says. “It is a house the place particularly younger individuals are occurring and listening to music … as they’re consuming. It is a utterly completely different expertise than, say, including a music to your Instagram story or issues that have been occurring previously.”

The dispute mustn’t overly have an effect on the well-being or recognition of the labels’ roster of movie star artists, she provides, which incorporates Taylor Swift, Girl Gaga and Elton John. However for the various different musicians whose work has turn into part of TikTok’s cloth, there are bigger implications for the longer term.

“There’s this actually quick rising sector of impartial artists and what’s generally known as ‘the lengthy tail’ which can be additionally releasing their music to streaming providers and competing for consideration,” she says, referring to the entire different music floating round that is obtainable for use. “There’s a variety of different music that TikTok customers have entry to past the foremost label catalog than they might have 5 or 10 years in the past. UMG remains to be essentially the most highly effective participant right here, however I feel these dynamics have shifted a bit of bit.”

TikTok and different social media platforms, she says, are the place new fandom and cultures are being constructed — and the music business’s energy gamers are cautious of being left behind.



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