In a deal that is the first of its kind, Universal Music Group (UMG) and Facebook have announced a partnership. This is the first major music company to license its recorded and publishing catalog for social experiences — including video — across the social media platform. The deal will also include Instagram and Oculus.
The agreement will have a major effect on both how the consumer experiences social media, how the music industry uses social media for its product, and how artists are compensated for their work. For the user, they will now be allowed to legally upload and videos with UMG licensed music, and will be able to personalize their experiences across the platforms. Over time, this could expand to users being able to access the archives of UMG music as part of the social platforms.
In terms of UMG, the move will monetize the use of music in social media for its artists. And while we don’t know exactly what kind of collaborations this might bring or the “new music-based products” and “social features” that are promised, it is easy to imagine all types of things from exclusive premieres to social media only content to exclusive access for users. Really, the sky is the limit for how a music partnership with the social media giant could look. There is also speculation that this could bolster Facebook’s attempts to get further into the video market with high-end video content.
In a press release, Tamara Hrivnak, Facebook’s head of music business development and partnerships, said the following:
“There is a magnetic relationship between music and community building. We are excited to bring that to life on Facebook, Instagram, Oculus and Messenger in partnership with UMG. Music lovers, artists and writers will all be right at home as we open up creativity, connection and innovation through music and video. This partnership is an important first step demonstrating that innovation and fair compensation for music creators are mutually reinforcing – they thrive together. 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.”
Terms of the deal were not disclosed at this time, but it is known to be multi-year. The amount of music under UMG is staggering, including labels like Interscope, Capitol, Republic, and Def Jam. Artists under the UMG banner include Taylor Swift, Kanye West, Lady Gaga, Adele, Coldplay, Lorde, Jay-Z, Metallica, and countless others.