Facebook, Instagram Update Music Guidelines and It’s Bad News For Live Streams

Just weeks after Facebook added fee-free ticketed live streams, it has issued new ‘Music Guidelines’ that will make it much riskier for musicians to use the platform.

Facebook issued new Music Guidelines that also cover Instagram and other Facebook platforms as part of an update to its Terms Of Service set to take effect on October 1, 2020.

Those guidelines put clear restrictions on music uses, including:

  • You are responsible for the content you post
  • You may not use videos on our Products to create a music listening experience
  • Unauthorized content may be removed
  • You may not be able to post or access videos containing music in every country of the world

(full new Facebook Music Guidelines below)

What Facebook has written is not out of synch with some other platforms, but it makes clear is that Facebook intends to police its live streams in ways that other paid platforms like StageIt and VEEPs do not.

So when an artist goes live on Facebook – ticketed or not – they need to be concerned not just that the Beatles cover they always do as an encore could trigger a takedown, but that their own songs if not recognized as ‘authorized’ could as well.

New Facebook Music Guidelines

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  1. So what constitutes authorized? I do a weekly live stream where my guest and I each play our own original songs (and an occasional cover). I would like to assume that my own songs on my own page – especially new ones I haven’t registered with ASCAP yet – are safe, but will I need permission from my guest to use his/her song? How can Facebook not want live music on their platform? Does this mean that they are working on a new feature or product in the background where they can better capitalize off artists’ performances?

  2. In other words you need to have your songs officially released and published in order for them to be properly recognized by FB Insta

  3. Facebook are running shit-scared of being sued by the three content publishers in the world – Sony, Disney, and one other (can’t remember, Warner Bros or Universal?)… anyway – they own something stupid like 80% or the WORLDs digital content – music, movies, games, you name it – they own the rights to it. And being mega-huge obscenely rich corporations, they want to screw every last penny out of you, and will fuck you over if you don’t pay. And also any organisation(s) that permit such flagrant violations of their money-making.

  4. These guidelines are inconsistent and counter to what they will tell you. First they say that video “will” be taken down, and then they say they “may” be taken down. Moreover, as I understand it, these platforms have PRO licenses, so all free live performances are cleared for public performance rights. If they are live and are not archived, then no other rights are necessary and they should NOT be taken down ever. If archived, the platforms have deals with certain publishers, so many popular cover performances would not be taken down anyways. But it has always been the case that a use would need to ensure that the synch rights are clear; this is nothing new.

  5. What does this phrase actually mean?

    “”You may not use videos on our Products to create a music listening experience””

    If you’re playing music, people aren’t licking it or splashing it under their armpits, they’re listening to it.

  6. For real!

    They are covering their backside but what does it mean for us?
    Probably a mass migration to YouTube!

  7. Clarification: Doesn’t this just apply to RECORDED work? Unless he’s changed his tune (see what I did there), Zuck recently said that PERFORMING covers live was acceptable.

  8. So whats the point being registered thru ASCAP and BMI to play the music. Especially when you are a RADIO Station DJ and have rights to play music. This is BS and yes someone is going to create a social platform that is going to ruin facebook in due time. This was not a real issue until the COVID situation. Basically what facebook is saying we gave you a place you can create a room and invite people to your private room.

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  10. We advise our customers not to utilize any sound, including music, during their Facebook Live Audios that they didn’t make or, get consent from the maker or proprietor to utilize. At the point when they guarantee that the Fair Use Doctrine will ensure them, we help them to remember the restricted degree and security this regulation gives.

  11. I post one song per night that is not a live stream, and, although I have purchased (or created) the track that I use, I also note that I don’t own the rights to the music. Will I have to quit doing these postings?

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