YouTube to pay out more royalties for music thanks to ASCAP deal

YouTube have come to a deal with royalty collecting society ASCAP to make sure artists are paid their fair share for music on YouTube.

YouTube have faced a lot of controversy in recent years, largely down to what is seen as unfairly low payouts for music streamed from videos on YouTube. For example, YouTube’s royalty payouts are vastly lower than that of music streaming services but both provide free listening to an artist’s music.

YouTube have done a lot recently to try and repair their relationship with the music industry and their latest move is a big one – partnering with ASCAP. ASCAP represent hundreds of thousands of artists around the world and collect licensing fees and royalties on behalf of artists for various uses of their music.

The deal struck between YouTube and ASCAP will see data shared between the two companies and is planned to result in more royalties paid to the music industry. The deal is a first for the two, who up until now have worked together on an unofficial basis.

“The mutual goal of this agreement is to work together to ensure that ASCAP members get paid more fairly and accurately for the use of their music on YouTube.”

The two companies will integrate ASCAP’s library of over 10 million musical works into YouTube’s Content ID system to automatically detect any uses of those works. This could result in a wave of new copyright claims that could harm creators’ content if unlicensed music has been used. However, they seem confident the deal “substantially increases the aggregate amount of revenue” that they are able to provide to musicians.

Global head of music at YouTube, Lyor Cohen said: “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.”

ASCAP’s CEO 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 proper 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.”

Writing about music, listening to music, and occasionally playing music.

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