According to the announcement, with this deal, the TikTok creator community will have access to sound clips from Sony Music’s giant catalog of songs. TikTok and Sony Music will work together to support greater levels of TikTok user personalization and creativity on the platform, and “drive new and forward-looking opportunities for fan engagement” with SME’s artists and music. TikTok will also partner with Sony Music in promoting artists on the platform.
Like many popular new platforms that use music, TikTok at times has been at odds with the music industry over royalty rates. While it struck a short-term deal with the three major labels earlier this year, the term of that arrangement apparently has lapsed; a rep for TikTok declined to comment on the status of the company’s licensing arrangements with Universal and Warner Music Groups.
In January, TikTok struck a licensing deal with the independent label collective Merlin, although terms were not disclosed; on the music-publishing side, it announced a multi-year agreement with the National Music Publishers Association in July.
Dennis Kooker, SME’s president of global digital business and U.S. sales, said, “Short form video clips have developed into an exciting new part of the music ecosystem that contributes to the overall growth of music and the way fans experience it. TikTok is a leader in this space and we are pleased to be partnering with them to drive music discovery, expand opportunities for creativity and support artist careers.”
Ole Obermann, TikTok’s global head of music, said, “We are thrilled to enter into this agreement with Sony Music so that we can continue to work together to connect the incredible roster of Sony artists in the US and across the globe to new audiences and harness the power of TikTok. Especially during this time when the artist community is challenged to find new ways to reach fans with their music, we are committed to working together to do just that.”