For years, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has been telling investors of a strategy to transform his company into a “video first” organization.
Here at MBW, time and time again, we’ve wondered whether – and when – this could one day leave Facebook as a natural rival to YouTube as the de facto home for music video (and also what this could mean for Vevo).
To date, this hasn’t transpired. In fact, the prospect of Facebook becoming a hub for music video appeared to take a hit in 2017 and 2018, when the major music companies inked global licensing deals with the platform that focused on “social experiences” – but didn’t appear to contain any kind of premium music video element.
That’s all about to change. Starting next month, official (as in, officially licensed) music videos are coming to Facebook in the US – and the social media giant is busy trying to convince artists to opt in.
According to a new report from TechCrunch, Facebook Page owners linked to artists in the States have been informed by FB that, if they wish to add music videos to their page, they need to switch a toggle permitting this setting to ‘on’ ahead of August 1.
The news comes after Bloomberg reported in December that Facebook was in fresh licensing discussions with Universal, Sony and Warner specifically over the rights to their music videos.
Beyond switching the toggle, artists aren’t required to do very much at all. By enabling this setting, artists give Facebook the green light to add music videos to their page, where they will be visible by fans/followers under a Videos tab.
According to TechCrunch, which has reviewed Facebook’s marketing materials, this library of videos will include the artist’s own official videos as well as videos in which the. Once they’ve opted in, artists can manually remove their videos from this area.
If artists choose not to enable the feature by August 1, Facebook will create a separate Page on their behalf for their ‘Official Music’.
Facebook will control this page, which will reportedly be accessible via Facebook Watch and “a new music video destination” on the platform.
According to Facebook’s Q1 2020 earnings statement, the website attracts 2.60 billion active monthly users globally; Instagram has long said that it reaches over a billion people.Music Business Worldwide