Snapchat’s Strategy Behind Rebuffing Influencers, Celebrities

Many social networks have thrived on creating relationships with celebrities and influencers, but Snapchat prefers to treat them like ordinary users — so much so that its terms of service prohibit users from getting paid to post. The aim is to provide users a more authentic, less product-promoting experience. It’s also Snapchat’s strategy for differentiating its platform, thus better attracting advertisers that prefer the credibility of an “authentic experience” to influencer endorsements of products. Continue reading Snapchat’s Strategy Behind Rebuffing Influencers, Celebrities

SoundCloud Strikes New Licensing Deal with Universal Music

Streaming music site SoundCloud will now have access to the Universal Music catalog, including songs from artists like The Weeknd, Sam Smith and U2. The licensing agreement allows Universal Music artists to make money from the advertising on SoundCloud when their songs are played. SoundCloud already has licensing agreements with other music companies, including Merlin and Warner Music Group. The company said it would also introduce a paid streaming subscription service this year. Continue reading SoundCloud Strikes New Licensing Deal with Universal Music

YouTube to Launch its Subscription Service in U.S. Next Week

At the YouTube Space in Los Angeles yesterday, YouTube execs formally introduced the company’s anticipated $9.99 per month subscription service. YouTube Red will offer consumers ad-free access to YouTube’s enormous catalog of music, gaming and how-to videos. The company also unveiled YouTube originals during the event, a collection of original programming that will be available exclusively through the new subscription service. YouTube Red will launch next week across the YouTube site, YouTube’s gaming app and the Google Play music service. Continue reading YouTube to Launch its Subscription Service in U.S. Next Week

Apple Music to Pay Royalties During New Service Trial Period

Apple Music, the highly-anticipated $10 per month streaming music service, is launching this month with a free three-month trial for music fans. Last week, Apple’s Robert Kondrk said that the company was planning to pay 71.5 percent of subscription revenue to all music owners. However, Kondrk also noted that Apple would not be paying owners during the three-month trial period. Following criticism by Taylor Swift and others, Apple changed its plans. Apple’s Eddy Cue quickly explained via Twitter that Apple would make sure that artists are paid. Continue reading Apple Music to Pay Royalties During New Service Trial Period

CD and Download Sales Drop as Music Fans Turn to Streaming

According to the Recording Industry Association of America, less than $3.2 billion in music sales was recorded for the first half of 2014, a 4.9 percent drop from the same period last year. While the growth of online streaming services continues to generate revenue for artists and record companies, it may not be enough to offset the reduction in sales of CDs and downloads. While downloads and streaming together totaled $2.2 billion (a similar total to last year), downloads dropped by 9 percent. Continue reading CD and Download Sales Drop as Music Fans Turn to Streaming

Ford and GM are Sued for Devices that Enable Music Copying

The Alliance of Artists & Recording Companies has filed a lawsuit against Ford, General Motors and two tech companies that made devices for digitally copying music from CDs to hard drives. The lawsuit is based on the 1992 Audio Home Recording Act, which provides royalties to record companies from the sale of music copying devices. The Alliance contends that Ford and GM installed these devices without paying any royalties, and is now seeking unpaid royalties and damages. Continue reading Ford and GM are Sued for Devices that Enable Music Copying

Audiam Finds New Ways to Pay Indie Musicians via YouTube

“Love Doctor,” a two-minute acid jazz instrumental is used in about 1,500 YouTube videos that do not pay for the rights to do so. The composer, Scott Schreer, has been working with New York startup Audiam in an effort to share in the advertising revenue associated with the videos. While serving as the Audiam test case, “Love Doctor” and Schreer’s library of 1,700 songs are generating about $30,000 per month for their use on the video site. Continue reading Audiam Finds New Ways to Pay Indie Musicians via YouTube