Facebook promises personalized music in first label deal

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The agreement aims to foster increased engagement between artists and fans online by first allowing users to upload videos containing licensed music.

Music labels and publishers have spent much of 2017 wondering what Facebook's plans were for licensing music. "Music lovers, artists and writers will all be right at home as we open up creativity, connection and innovation through music and video", Tamara Hrivnak, Facebook's head of music business development and partnerships, said in a statement.

"In time, functionality will expand to enable access to a vast library of music across a series of social features".

The multi-year agreement will be expanded later to include Facebook Messenger, Universal Music Group, according to Reuters.

A successful music streaming service would strengthen YouTube's relationships with music rights holders. Financial terms weren't disclosed, though its likely UMG was the beneficiary of a whopping advance.

What does this mean for Spotify, which has been one of Facebook's strongest partners in the music-streaming space - how will playlists and other content shared from Spotify rank in Facebook's news feed algorithm compared to the content bubbling up from the social network's deals with labels?

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The licensing deal could help Facebook better compete with Alphabet Inc's YouTube since music videos are the most popular category on the site, said Brian Wieser, an analyst at Pivotal Research. The move will soon bring UMG's music catalog to Facebook, Instagram, and Oculus.

Last year, the site made a concerted push into livestreaming with Facebook Live, letting users with a smartphone broadcast everything from press conferences to their dinner parties to the world at large.

YouTube is on its way to launch its new paid music service which will be out by March next year.

Facebook, based in Menlo Park, Calif., is trying to get people to watch and share more videos on its platform.

Earlier this month, Facebook released its own collections of songs and song effects.

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