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ASCAP signs new deal with YouTube

By | Published on Wednesday 14 June 2017


Ah, YouTube. Bloody YouTube. You know what we should do about YouTube? Sign up to a new multi-year licensing deal, that’s what.

US collecting society ASCAP yesterday announced that it had signed a new deal with the Google video site. The performing rights organisation said that the new arrangement included both better rates and commitments from YouTube to collaborate with ASCAP in a bid to ensure better data sharing and therefore more accurate royalty distribution.

As previously reported at length, a key problem with streaming royalties on the music publishing side is working out what songs are being used in any one track, and that’s extra tricky with user-uploaded content.

ASCAP said yesterday that “the evolution of the agreement between the two entities leverages YouTube’s data exchange and ASCAP’s vast database of musical works to address the industry challenge of identifying songwriter, composer and publisher works on YouTube, and demonstrates ASCAP’s commitment to building industry-leading data capabilities. This innovative collaboration will enable new levels of monetisation and transparency for ASCAP and its members”.

Meanwhile ASCAP boss Elizabeth Matthews added: “This agreement achieves two important ASCAP goals – it will yield substantially higher overall compensation for our members from YouTube and will continue to propel ASCAP’s ongoing transformation strategy to lead the industry toward more accurate and reliable data. The ultimate goal is to ensure that more money goes to the songwriters, composers and publishers whose creative works fuel the digital music economy”.

YouTube’s Chief Get Matey With Those Moaning Music Companies Officer Lyor Cohen added: “YouTube is dedicated to ensuring artists, publishers and songwriters are fairly compensated. As YouTube delivers more revenue to the music industry through a combination of subscription and advertising revenue, it’s great to see ASCAP take a progressive approach towards the long term financial success of its members”.

So hurrah for that. Though we are obligated under music industry law to remind you that, while this deal is obviously marvellous, YouTube is evil, it is single-handedly destroying the music-making process, and must be stopped.