Facebook Must Strike A Deal With Music Publishers As Soon As Possible

No Comments 8 January 2017

Facebook Must Strike A Deal With Music Publishers As Soon As Possible

The careers of unsigned artists are being caught in the crossfire of an increasingly aggressive copyright assault on Facebook by music publishers.

Performers began to publicly complain about covers of popular tracks being pulled down from Facebook in October, following a spate of copyright infringement notifications from music rights-holders.

Things have gone from bad to worse for them since then.

Author: Tim Ingham

The most vigorous publisher in terms of takedown demands, MBW is told, is Universal Music Publishing Group.

The company’s anti-piracy boss David Benjamin has sent a legion of individual copyright notices to Facebook this year - for which he was recently called a ‘hero’ by songwriter and musicians’ rights activist David Lowery.

But not everyone is quite as impressed - particularly those emerging artists for whom the fallout is causing major headaches.

Samantha Harvey is a British singer/songwriter who has attracted 1.97 million ‘Likes’ on her official Facebook page.

By any measure, that’s a pretty extraordinary following for an artist without a label.

According to her management company at 84 World, Harvey is the most ‘Liked’ unsigned artist in the UK - a claim that seems to hold up to scrutiny.

Consider that Stormzy, one of the most celebrated independent artists in Britain today, has less than a third of this number at 523,730.

Further context: Rag ‘N’ Bone Man, the Columbia-signed BRITs Critics’ Choice winner, has 91,369 ‘Likes’ on his growing UK Facebook page, while the artist behind the current UK No.1 single, Clean Bandit, has 805,578.

Harvey has gained popularity on Facebook via a series of cover versions, in addition to Live chats with her fans and duets with fellow acts such as Conor Maynard.

But in recent months, Harvey’s found herself under siege.

In a video update to fans originally posted on December 10, Harvey explained that Facebook had started removing her cover performances on copyright grounds. This, she said, was “on the instruction of publishing companies”.

The simple reason for that instruction: Facebook continues to fail to pay any advertising revenues to rights-owners of music consumed on its platform.

Read More/Original Source: http://www.musicbusinessworldwide.com/facebook-must-strike-deal-music-publishers-soon-possible/

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