Facebook is a social network and technology company headquartered in Menlo Park, California.
The company was founded by its CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, in February 2004.
Facebook owns the main Facebook platform, in addition to Instagram – which it acquired for $1 billion in 2012 – as well as messaging app Whatsapp, which it bought for a purchase price of $19 billion in 2014.
Facebook is also the parent of virtual reality platform Oculus VR.
According to Facebook’s investor updates, at the close of September 2020, the main Facebook platform was welcoming 2.74 billion monthly active users (MAUs) and 1.82 billion daily active users (DAUs).
Facebook’s relationship with music rights
In December 2017 Facebook inked a global music licensing deal with Universal Music Group. The agreement saw UMG license both its recorded music catalog and music publishing catalog to Facebook platforms worldwide.
Tamara Hrivnak, Head of Music Business Development and Partnerships, Facebook, said at the time: “We are excited to bring that to life on Facebook, Instagram, Oculus and Messenger in partnership with UMG. Music lovers, artists and writers will all be right at home as we open up creativity, connection and innovation through music and video.”
The news followed a flurry of takedown notices from music rightsholders such as UMG for copyright infringement on the Facebook platform.
Global licensing deals between Facebook and other rightsholders – including Warner Music Group, Sony/ATV and indie group Merlin – followed the UMG deal.
These agreements are believed to have encompassed a “blank check” advance payment from Facebook to these music companies for future use of music rights on the platform for a limited number of years.
However, the agreements aren’t believed to have included a commitment from Facebook to reporting usage of music on its platform to labels and publishers.
Speaking to Music Business Worldwide in October 2019, Facebook’s Tamara Hrivnak said: “We have built an awful lot of infrastructure to support our partners in music in a very short amount of time. Most of the infrastructure and tools are in beta [currently], and they’re in beta because we’re working together with our partners to make sure they meet the industry’s needs.
“All of our tools will be evolving and improving, including those for reporting, to meet the industry’s needs; that is something that’s important to us.”
Facebook’s move into music video
In July 2020, Facebook announced that, for the first time, premium licensed music videos would be coming to its platform in the US.
Official music videos were previously licensed and available on Facebook in India and Thailand.
Tamara Hrivnak, VP of Music Business Development at Facebook and Partnerships and Vijaye Raji, VP of Entertainment at Facebook commented on the launch in a joint blog.
Said the duo: “Today, we’re adding a new way for people to come together around music by bringing official music videos to Facebook in the US. Starting this weekend, you’ll be able to discover, watch and share music videos from today’s top artists to up-and-coming bands and classics across various music genres on Facebook.”Music Business Worldwide