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Facebook cracks down on unlicensed livestreaming

Facebook is cracking down on livestreamed shows that include recorded music with new terms of service, preventing artists from using the platform for “commercial or non-personal” purposes, unless they have obtained the relevant licences.

The updated music guidelines state that users “may not use videos on our products [which include Instagram] to create a music listening experience […] This includes [Facebook] Live,” and stipulates that such content should be posted for the enjoyment of friends and family only.

The terms also say that any videos not adhering to the guidelines will be blocked and the offending page, profile or group may be deleted. The updated guidelines will come into effect from 1 October.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, the music industry has seen a boom in livestreamed concerts which, in turn, has raised questions about copyright infringement issues around the use of recorded music.

Recently, Gregor Pryor of law firm Reed Smith told IQ how artists can effectively – and legally – engage and monetise the online format.

“Considering the rules and regulations involved will be essential to prevent any platform-imposed penalties”

Pryor recommends that artists check each platform’s terms and conditions and monetisation policies, and remember that they are responsible for all rights and clearances necessary to perform their music.

“Considering the rules and regulations involved and, where applicable, seeking advice to ensure compliance with these, will be essential to prevent any regulator- or platform-imposed penalties affecting the artist’s ability to livestream,” he says.

Elsewhere, IQ spoke to some of the pioneers who are establishing live streaming as a crucial new outlet for creativity and, potentially, a lasting revenue stream for artists and their teams. Read the first part of the series, which includes LiveFrom, Streamyard and Wookey Technologies’ Sansar, here.

The livestreaming boom has also seen major music streaming services jump on the bandwagon. Recently, Jay-Z’s streaming service Tidal has spent US$7 million on tokens issued by the company behind Sensorium Galaxy, a new VR “social metaspace” in which users can attend alternative-world concerts, nightclubs and festivals through a VR headset.

While, Spotify is developing a feature that will alert fans to an artist’s upcoming virtual events, according to a tweet by reverse engineer Jane Manchun Wong.

 


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Instagram allows monetisation of live streams

Instagram has introduced two new features to remunerate creators for their live streams, bringing its increasingly popular IGTV video service into line with parent company Facebook’s Live platform.

In a blog post yesterday (27 May), the company announced a new way for fans to support streamers: Badges, a cosmetic item which, for a one-off charge, will be displayed next to the viewer’s name for the duration of the stream, allowing them to stand out in the comments.

The purchase of a badge will also unlock certain special features, “such as placement on a creator’s list of badge holders and access to a special heart” reaction, according to Instagram.

The introduction of the badge system – which resembles other methods of ‘tipping’ such as Twitch’s cheers and YouNow’s bars – follows Facebook’s announcement last month it is to allow events organisers to charge for access to live streams.

Speaking to the Verge, Instagram COO Justin Osofsky said the badges will initially be priced at either US$0.99, $1.99 and $4.99, with Instagram initially taking no cut of badge revenue (later, a rev-share model will be introduced).

The ad split will be based on an “industry standard” of 55% in favour of creators

In addition to badges, the blog post also reveals that as of next week (commencing 1 June), IGTV will for the first time have advertising – revenue from which will be shared with creators.

“IGTV ads will initially appear when people click to watch IGTV videos from previews in their feed,” the company explains. “The video ads will be built for mobile and up to 15 seconds long. We’ll test various experiences within IGTV ads throughout the year – such as the ability to skip an ad – to make sure the final result works well for people, creators and advertisers.”

According to Osofsky, the split will be based on an “industry standard” of 55% in favour of creators.

However, the “small alpha test” will “not be available for music content at this time”, Facebook – which has no licence in place for livestreaming music – later clarified.

Along with the likes of Twitch, YouTube and more specialist platforms such as StageIt, Facebook Live and IGTV are one of a number of livestreaming services being utilised by the live music industry during the global pause on concert touring.

 


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Facebook inks MLS live-stream deal—Is music next?

Facebook, the world’s most-used social network, has reached a deal with US football league Major League Soccer (MLS) and broadcaster Univision Deportes to stream at least 22 MLS matches on Facebook Live this year.

MLS says the streams will include unique-to-Facebook commentators, with whom viewers can interact in real time, as well as interactive graphics and polling. The Wall Street Journal reported last July the social network is paying football teams more than US$4 million to use its Facebook Live platform.

“We are committed to serving our passionate fans,” says Gary Stevenson (pictured), president and managing director of MLS Business Ventures. “We are working with all of our partners on making sure our games and additional content get to our fans anytime, anywhere and on any device.”

The deal’s significance for the live entertainment industry lies in Facebook’s expansion of its activities in music

The deal’s significance for the live entertainment industry – which has in the past 12 months seen festivals including Primavera Sound and Sziget, and acts such as country star George Strait, exploring the live streaming of shows, which may prove to be a important revenue stream in years to come – lies in Facebook’s expansion of its activities in music.

It recently hired ex-EMG exec Tamara Hrivnak as head op music licensing, and, as spotted by Music Business Worldwide, is now seeking a legal director of music licensing to spearhead its “evolving music licensing needs”.

Facebook’s EMEA vice-president in Europe, Nicola Mendelsohn, recently suggested the social network would likely be “all video” by 2021.

 


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KC goes live with new Facebook streaming service

Kelly Clarkson has become the first high-profile artist to take advantage of Facebook’s recently introduced Live feature, launching a week-long series of mini-concerts live-streamed from the singer’s home to her 15 million+ Facebook fans.

Kicking off on Monday with a cover of Otis Redding’s ‘These Arms of Mine’ and continuing yesterday with Foreigner’s ‘I Want to Know What Love Is’, the American Idol winner’s five #KCgoesLIVE concerts are designed to build hype for a big announcement (her “coolest” one ever, she says) on Friday.

“Instead of doing a boring press release, I thought it would be cool to do something kind of my style to announce something,” she says. Monday’s concert has so far been viewed over 1.5m times, while Tuesday’s is currently on 1.1m.

“Instead of doing a boring press release, I thought it would be cool to do something kind of my style to announce something”

Facebook Live is a direct competitor to Twitter’s standalone live video service, Periscope (it of accidentally streaming The Cure fame).

Facebook’s EMEA vice-president in Europe, Nicola Mendelsohn, last week told Forbes that the social network would likely be “all video” by 2021.

In December Facebook announced that ticketing companies would be able to sell directly tickets through its event pages. So far Ticketmaster, Eventbrite and white-label service Ticketbud have implemented the functionality.

 


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