The Brag Media
News August 3, 2020

Play on: Facebook finally launches ‘official’ music videos

Senior Journalist, B2B
Play on: Facebook finally launches ‘official’ music videos

Facebook has finally pressed the button on music videos.

Over the weekend, the social giant rolled out shareable, licensed music videos for its users in the U.S. with global music video premieres pegged for “the coming weeks,” according to a blog post.

It’s the first shot fired in a battle royale with YouTube which for well over a decade has sat on its throne as the King of music video content.

Writing on behalf of the company, Facebook’s VP of music business development and partnerships Tamara Hrivnak says FB has content deals with all three major music companies, as well as the independents’ digital rights agency Merlin, BMG, Kobalt and a number of indies, publishers and PROs.

All of which means, content creators will get paid, though royalty cuts are unsurprisingly left out of the statement.

Music videos on Facebook

Music videos on Facebook

Clips across various genres can be posted on artists’ official pages, and fans can react, comment and share them as they would with other content on the network, including your News Feed, Groups and Messenger.

In the weeks and months ahead, FB will exclusively premiere music videos from J. Balvin, Karol G, Sebastian Yatra, Alejandro Fernandez, Calibre 50, and the platform will host a first-listen to a new Lele Pons track.

Facebook has been testing the videos in Thailand and India, and the tech giant also hinted at a new space for music on Facebook Watch, where users can go find music videos by mood, genre or artists and tap into themed playlists based on genre, era and popularity.

Over time, the experience will become more personalised to your tastes based on the artists and music you seek out, the company said.

It’s been a long time coming. Facebook began seriously tooling-up for its music future in 2017 when the Silicon Valley giant recruited Hrivnak to handle “global music strategy and business development,” alongside a team of music industry professionals.

Previously, Hrivnak worked as director of music partnerships for Google Play and YouTube and, before that, served as VP of digital strategy & business affairs for Warner/Chappell Music Publishing.

As The Industry Observer wrote at the time, “whoever supports Hrivnak in building its music strategy will need a special touch in the art of deal-brokering. Facebook will need to overcome its uneasy relationship with content providers to unlock those tens of millions of tracks already licensed to its rivals’ platforms.”

Official music videos on FB

By mid-2018, content deals were struck with Universal Music Group, Sony/ATV, Global Music Rights and others, ahead of a major launch.

In that time, Facebook has grown to a behemoth with 2.6 billion users worldwide in the first quarter, according to Statista, including some 223 million in the U.S. and 15 million active users in Australia (or about 60 percent of the population).

An official launch date for “official” music videos for users in these parts has yet to be confirmed.

Though going by the launch of Apple Music, Tidal and other digital music platforms in the past five years, Australia is typically close behind the U.S.

It’s unclear how many “official” titles are available at launch. Whatever the number, FB is keen to make it grow. “We’ll continue working with our music partners to build unique social experiences and bring music into the ways people connect and share,” notes Hrivnak in the blog post.

In the coming weeks, “we’ll add more of your favourite music videos to Facebook. And over time, we’ll introduce more features to help music lovers share, discover and connect around music on Facebook.”

This article originally appeared on The Industry Observer, which is now part of The Music Network.


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