This move from Universal Music Group could prove to have a big impact on TikTok as music is essential for the platform. Without the music, creators won’t be able to express themselves to the extent they would want to.
There have been negotiations going on between Universal Music Group and TikTok for quite some time to keep the music on the platform but nothing concrete came from these negotiations. Both parties failed to reach a new agreement on usage rights, Universal has announced that the company will withdraw its music from the app with effect from 1 Feb 2024.
Universal is home to some of the biggest music talents on the planet, including Adele, Drake, Taylor Swift, and Billie Eilish. Universal says that TikTok offered less than it had hoped on both compensation for its artists and safeguards about generative AI usage.
The earlier deal was signed in 2021, which expired on January 31. After that, the company will pull group-owned music from the app.
Here is what Universal said in a statement.
“[Universal and TikTok] have not agreed to terms for a new agreement, and upon expiration of the current agreement, Universal Music Group, including Universal Music Publishing Group, will cease licensing content to TikTok and TikTok Music services.”
Universal Music also claimed that TikTok “is trying to build a music-based business, without paying fair value for the music.”
In a response to Universal’s statements, TikTok said that it’s disappointed that they have walked away from a free promotional and discovery vehicle for its artists.
This could be a blow for TikTok as they are making music a big part of the TikTok experience. This is not good for the users, ultimately they will have to suffer in this corporate battle.