Facebook moves ahead on music with last major label deal

Facebook's two billion users worldwide will soon be able to post in more creative ways with the vast catalog of songs from Warner Music

Users will be able to create their own videos and messages soundtracked by the label's artists, which include British acts Ed Sheeran, Coldplay and Charli XCX, in an agreement to access its recorded music and publishing back catalogues. However, their deal with Warner Music Group, announced today, allows users to post their content using music published by the corporation.

The WMG deal follows similar licensing agreements with Universal Music and Sony Music, as well as like-minded pacts with Kobalt Music Publishing, Global Music Rights, HFA/Rumblefish and, most recently, the pan-European rights hub ICE. It's part of the social network's effort to avoid having to take down videos from users and social influencers for using music without a license.

"Our partnership with Facebook will help expand the universe of music streaming and create supplementary revenue for artists", said Ole Obermann, WMG chief digital officer.

"Fan-created video is one of the most personal, social and often viral ways that music is enjoyed, but its commercial potential is largely untapped", he added.

The deal could also stand to benefit its rumoured entry into the smart speaker market, rumoured for release in July.

Facebook will now start paying royalties for all music posted on Facebook and Instagram, including fan covers and wedding dance videos.

With the major labels all accounted for, Facebook still has to work out a deal with Merlin to get more indie artists on board, but the company has made a lot of headway in just a few months. Facebook said Friday that recorded broadcasts will also be available globally, excluding select worldwide markets.

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