Facebook Gaming Partners will now be able to play copyrighted music in the background during their live streams without fear.
One of the problems with live streaming so far has been the inability for streamers to play copyrighted music in the background during their broadcasts fearing copyright infringement. Facebook is working to change that through its partnership with various music publishers.
Facebook Gaming will now allow its Facebook Gaming Partners to play music during their gaming broadcasts, however, there is a small catch. The music will have to be a background element, not be the primary focus of the stream. This means that a streamer’s voice should be in the foreground, making it impossible for DJs to open a gaming channel and start live-streaming. Facebook also recently started tightening its rules for DJs streaming on Facebook Live.
The rule also applies to clips that were made from a livestream, and the VOD version of any livestreams. It does not extend, however, to separately edited and uploaded VOD content.
Facebook has negotiated deals with many music labels, publishers and societies, including Universal Music Group, Warner Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, Kobalt Music Group, BMG publishing, Merlin, and many partners, but these deals don’t cover every track out there. There are still restricted tracks that will bring up a pop-up saying that they aren’t licensed for use on Facebook Gaming. At this point, it’s not clear as to which tracks are actually restricted and there is no way to know unless you actually start streaming.
As Facebook’s Leo Olebe, Facebook’s Global Director for Games Partnerships explains, “rights for music are complex; they vary based on territory and are subject to change. The specifics of our licensing agreements are also confidential, so we’re unable to disclose which songs are not covered, making this answer wholly unsatisfying.”
In any case, Facebook says that restricted tracks are rare, and streamers will be notified if a section of their video matches a song and has been muted or blocked.
For the time being, the new feature is available to Facebook Gaming Partners only, but Facebook says it will gradually open up to Level Up creators as well. All creators still have access to Facebook’s Sound Collection – a library of free custom music and sound effects.