TikTok and Universal Music Group forge new agreement, ending feud

Universal Music Group (UMG) and TikTok have reached a significant agreement, marking the end of a dispute that led to UMG pulling its music from the platform earlier this year. This “multi-dimensional” deal will bring UMG’s extensive roster of artists, including Taylor Swift, Drake, and Olivia Rodrigo, back to TikTok’s one billion-plus users after the previous contract expired on February 1st.

The agreement addresses concerns over generative AI, with both parties committing to developing AI tools responsibly to protect human artistry and ensure fair compensation for artists and songwriters. TikTok pledges to remove unauthorized AI-generated music from the platform and enhance artist and songwriter attribution.

Ole Obermann, TikTok’s Global Head of Music Business Development, expressed delight in welcoming UMG and UMPG back to the platform, emphasizing their joint commitment to responsible AI development and protecting human creativity.

“We are delighted to welcome UMG and UMPG back to TikTok. We look forward to working together to forge a path that creates deeper connections between artists, creators, and fans. In particular, we will work together to make sure that AI tools are developed responsibly to enable a new era of musical creativity and fan engagement while protecting human creativity”.

In addition to resolving the AI issue, the deal opens up new monetization opportunities for UMG through TikTok’s expanding e-commerce capabilities. The platform also promises to continue building tools to empower artists with better analytics and integrated ticketing features.

Both companies are working swiftly to restore UMG’s artists to the platform, signaling a positive step forward for creators, fans, and the music industry as a whole.

“This new chapter in our relationship with TikTok focuses on the value of music, the primacy of human artistry and the welfare of the creative community. We look forward to collaborating with the team at TikTok to further the interests of our artists and songwriters and drive innovation in fan engagement while advancing social music monetization,” said Sir Lucian Grainge, Chairman and CEO, Universal Music Group.

Shou Chew, CEO of TikTok, said: “Music is an integral part of the TikTok ecosystem and we are pleased to have found a path forward with Universal Music Group. We are committed to working together to drive value, discovery and promotion for all of UMG’s amazing artists and songwriters, and deepen their ability to grow, connect and engage with the TikTok community.”

Written by Maya Robertson


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