Spotify In-House Agency AUX to Connect Brands with Music

Spotify is rolling out AUX, an in-house music advisory agency for brands. “With AUX, we’ll use our deep expertise to counsel brands about how best to use music to enrich their campaigns and connect them with emerging artists to help them reach new audiences,” Spotify announced, joining Meta Platforms, YouTube, Snapchat and others in connecting creatives with brands. AUX aims to provide emerging artists with an avenue to another potential income source, as well as a path to wider exposure, as the idea is to get brands to pay Spotify to access the new service. Continue reading Spotify In-House Agency AUX to Connect Brands with Music

OpenAI’s Generative Video Tech Is Described as ‘Eye-Popping’

OpenAI has debuted a generative video model called Sora that could be a game changer. In OpenAI’s demonstration clips, Sora depicts both fantasy and natural scenes with photorealistic intensity that makes the images appear to be photographed. Although Sora is said to be currently limited to one-minute clips, it is only a matter of time until that expands, which suggests the technology could have a significant impact on all aspects of production — from entertainment to advertising to education. Concerned about Sora’s disinformation potential, OpenAI is proceeding cautiously, and initially making it available only to a select group to help it troubleshoot. Continue reading OpenAI’s Generative Video Tech Is Described as ‘Eye-Popping’

AI Poison Pill App Nightshade Has 250K Downloads in 5 Days

AI copyright infringement tool Nightshade generated 250,000 downloads shortly after its January release, exceeding the expectations of its creators in the computer science department at the University of Chicago. Nightshade allows artists to thwart AI models from scraping and training on their work without consent. The Bureau of Labor Statistics shows more than 2.67 million artists working in the U.S., but social media feedback indicates the downloads have been worldwide. One of the coders says cloud mirror links had to be added so as not to overwhelm the University of Chicago’s web servers. Continue reading AI Poison Pill App Nightshade Has 250K Downloads in 5 Days

TikTok Adds ‘Artist Accounts’ to Help Boost Music Streaming

TikTok is further entrenching itself in music streaming with its new “Artist Account” toolbox that allows followers to play tunes, buy merchandise and access news and information. The new feature is designed to allow artists to promote their work and increase discoverability using such tools as an artist tag and new release highlights on discovery pages. TikTok describes the Artist Account as a “toolbox of features” to support promotion and “forge a closer relationship between artist and fan on TikTok.” Available to every music creator that has uploaded at least four songs, more than 70,000 accounts are eligible from the drop. Continue reading TikTok Adds ‘Artist Accounts’ to Help Boost Music Streaming

Stability AI Adds Apps to Draft 3D Models, Fine-Tune Objects

Stability AI is rolling out next-generation enterprise tools for its Stable Diffusion text-to-image generator. Leading the pack is Stable 3D, geared toward game developers and  graphic designers, with results that integrate with popular 3D platforms including Blender, Maya, Unreal Engine and Unity, according to Stability. Now in private preview, Stable 3D enables non-experts to generate “thousands of 3D objects per day” by selecting an image or illustration or writing a text prompt. Another preview app, Stable FineTuning, provides the ability to quickly fine-tune pictures, objects and styles. A third tool, Sky Replacer, is available now. Continue reading Stability AI Adds Apps to Draft 3D Models, Fine-Tune Objects

Shutterstock Offers AI Image Editor for Massive Stock Library

Creative image platform Shutterstock has added AI-powered editing features that provide “the potential for infinite options to refine and perfect images” in the company’s library of more than 700 million stock selections. A go-to source for brand marketers and digital media companies, Shutterstock is offering six signature AI capabilities as well as secondary features such as a virtual AI design assistant and advanced filters under the umbrella Creative AI. What’s more, Shutterstock says it will compensate its licensed artists when their images are edited with AI. Continue reading Shutterstock Offers AI Image Editor for Massive Stock Library

Spotify to Introduce New Version of Its Royalty Payout Model

Spotify will reportedly change its royalty payout formula beginning next year in an effort to cut out scammers and more equitably distribute funds among “legitimate artists” and rightsholders. As a result, it is estimated that about $1 billion in royalty payments will be redistributed over the next five years. The streamer is considering setting a minimum number of annual streams to qualify for royalty payments — which is generating controversy — as well as sanctions on distributors and labels determined to be fraudulently manipulating streams, and adding a playtime threshold that targets so called “noise tracks” designed to emulate music. Continue reading Spotify to Introduce New Version of Its Royalty Payout Model

Spotify Offers ‘Merch Hub’ for Recommendations and More

Spotify has launched an in-app dedicated Merch Hub that will offer personalized purchase recommendations based on listening habits. Previously, the music streamer’s shopping opportunities were through artist profile pages as well as via the Now Playing view and new release pages. Now, “instead of having to browse artist by artist, this update makes it easier than ever to access all artist merch in one place,” Spotify says. Last year, the streamer reported “the highest-grossing merch sales week for artists in Spotify history” in its annual Wrapped report. Continue reading Spotify Offers ‘Merch Hub’ for Recommendations and More

Universal, Deezer to Reinvent Music Streaming Royalty Model

Universal Music Group and Deezer have set Q4 as the launch date for a new, artist-centric streaming royalty model the companies jointly developed. Indie streaming platform Deezer will launch the concept model in its native France in Q4 2023. The companies conceived the new compensation methodology as part of a previously announced collaboration, using “deep data analysis” for an outcome they say “better reflects the true value of artist-fan relationships.” Calling streaming “the most significant technology advancement in music in many years,” the partners conclude “a flood of uploads with no meaningful engagement” has necessitated reassessment. Continue reading Universal, Deezer to Reinvent Music Streaming Royalty Model

Deezer Says Its Tech Can Flag and Delete Deepfake AI Tunes

Deezer, the global music streaming platform based in France, claims to have developed a technique for flagging — and potentially deleting — songs that use artificial intelligence to simulate the performance of popular singers. “We need to take a stand now,” Deezer CEO Jeronimo Folgueira said in an interview. “We are at a pivotal moment in music.” His company plans to “weed out illegal and fraudulent content” in an effort to protect artists. Deezer’s detection technology is still under development. It relies on AI, which Folgueira said he is not against if it is used ethically. Continue reading Deezer Says Its Tech Can Flag and Delete Deepfake AI Tunes

Music Industry Contends with Artificial Intelligence Disruption

There’s been a lot of noise recently about music generated by artificial intelligence tools. The clamor is on multiple fronts: generative mimicry of specific artists’ vocal styles, the potential to put Muzak-style background tunesmiths out of business with potentially cheaper alternatives, and the particulars of takedown orders. The matter came to a head this month after generative AI vocals prompted to sound like Drake and The Weeknd performed a song called “Heart on My Sleeve,” written and produced by a TikTok user. The tune quickly went viral, raising numerous concerns. Continue reading Music Industry Contends with Artificial Intelligence Disruption

Samsung Updates Smart Hub with Emphasis on Sports, Music

Searching for and organizing content is a fact of life with smart TVs. Samsung has updated its Smart Hub to make that experience — on the TV and smartphone — much easier, especially with regard to sports and music. The company demonstrated its new Smart Hub “experience” at CES 2017. The user no longer needs to search for where his or her favorite team can be found on OTA channels and streaming services. Instead, the user tells the Hub what teams he follows, and the Smart TV will give him channels, schedules and scores. For music, Samsung’s Hub now offers Shazam. Continue reading Samsung Updates Smart Hub with Emphasis on Sports, Music

Pop Star Taylor Swift to Release Mobile Game Later This Year

Move over, Kim Kardashian. Taylor Swift is entering the mobile gaming space with the help of game publisher Glu Mobile, which has created popular games for Kim Kardashian and Katy Perry. Swift’s first mobile game is expected to be released in late 2016. The announcement gave investors some confidence and Glu Mobile’s stock jumped 29 percent in after-hours trading. Glu Mobile’s “Kim Kardashian: Hollywood” mobile game generated $43 million in its first three months. Continue reading Pop Star Taylor Swift to Release Mobile Game Later This Year

Shazam Revamps its Mobile App with Improved Music Features

With the launch of a new mobile app, Shazam hopes its latest features will increase the average time people spend using the app. The new features will allow users to see what songs are being searched for the most globally. Additionally, users will now have access to a stream of content such as articles and Twitter posts about different artists and songs. Also worth noting is that Spotify users will have the option to add the music they discover on Shazam to a Spotify playlist without leaving the app. Continue reading Shazam Revamps its Mobile App with Improved Music Features

Shapeways, Hasbro Allow Artists to Sell 3D Fan Art and More

3D printing and shipping company Shapeways is allowing any user to upload and sell content that features Hasbro characters. As part of the new agreement, Shapeways, Hasbro and the artist are all compensated. Many copyright holders see 3D printing as a modern version of pirating, as it takes little effort to download and print an object. With this new model, however, if an item costs $30, then Shapeways receives $20 for material and manufacturing, while Hasbro receives $3.50 and the artist receives $6.50.  Continue reading Shapeways, Hasbro Allow Artists to Sell 3D Fan Art and More