Kobalt, one of the world’s largest music publishers, has removed its entire catalog of 700,000 songs from Facebook and Instagram in the United States, a company representative has confirmed. Variety.
The company’s US licensing agreement with Meta, parent company of the two social media giants, has expired and the two parties have failed to strike a new deal. Kobalt administers songs from artists like Paul McCartney, The Weeknd, Foo Fighters, Childish Gambino, Billie Eilish co-writer Finneas, The Chicks, Dierks Bentley, Beck and many more. The news was first reported by Music Business Worldwide.
According to an email Kobalt sent to songwriters, “Over several months, we have worked diligently and in good faith to reach an agreement covering a new license for Kobalt’s repertoire. Unfortunately, fundamental differences remained that we were unable to resolve in your best interests, and as a result Kobalt’s directory is being removed from Meta’s services, including Facebook and Instagram, in the United States. United. We’ve always championed songwriters first, and we’re proud to continue to do so. We remain fully committed to reaching an agreement with Meta. The accuracy of the email has been confirmed by a company representative.
This decision has strong ramifications, as Kobalt is one of the top 5 publishers in the world and often has a larger quarterly share of global hits than some of the three majors. The company estimates that it has a share of over 40% of the top 100 tracks and albums in an average week in the US and UK.
As noted by MBW, the move comes just days after another prominent music rights holder – Sweden’s Epidemic Sound – filed a $142 million lawsuit against Meta in the US, claiming that ” unauthorized use “of his works on Facebook and Instagram” is rampant.
While these situations are usually resolved relatively amicably within weeks or months, with both parties continuing to operate under previous terms until new ones are agreed, it is rare for two such massive companies to reach this point. in such an important music market. , not to mention the largest in the world. According to its latest “Music in the Air” report, Goldman Sachs estimates that Facebook contributed 29% of all “emerging platforms” advertising revenue paid to the recorded music industry in 2021.