Snapchat Launches ‘Sounds’, Enabling Users To Orchestrate Snaps, Stories With Licensed Music

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Snapchat has officially launched today a new product called Sounds, which will let users add music to both Snaps and Stories, bringing the app on the same page as platform du jour TikTok.

The feature is available globally on iOS, per Variety, and will debut with an exclusive preview of a brand new Justin Bieber and Benny Blanco track called “Lonely.”

Sounds enables users to choose from a curated catalog of music within Snapchat’s ‘Featured Sounds‘ list — which is where the Bieber and Blanco track will live. Users can add songs in real-time as they’re creating Snaps, or as background music on pre-recorded videos.

In August, Snapchat confirmed that it was readying musical integration after inking licensing agreements with several prominent music labels and publishers, including Warner Music Group, Universal Music Publishing Group, Merlin, NMPA, Warner Chappell Music, Kobalt, and BMG Music Publishing. (Though it notably does not operate agreements with two of the world’s biggest record companies, Sony Music Entertainment and Universal Music Group, which is separate from its publishing division). Snap began testing Sounds in New Zealand and Australia in August, before rolling it out globally today.

Sounds also serve as a discovery tool for artists, with Snaps containing songs touting links that direct users to listen to tracks in full on streaming platforms including Spotify, Apple Music, and SoundCloud.

In another swipe at TikTok, Snapchat in coming months will roll out the ability for users to create their own sounds and add them to Snaps — and presumably for other users to piggyback on these sounds to generate viral trends, Variety reports, which is a key component of TikTok’s success.

You can check out a teaser video showcasing Sounds in action below:

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UTA Digital Co-Head Greg Goodfried Departs To Fully Represent The D’Amelio Family

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The D’Amelio family is getting some more hands-on representation.

Greg Goodfried, a digital media veteran who was one of the creators of the groundbreaking lonelygirl15 webseries, has departed his role as co-head of UTA’s digital talent division to work full-time with the D’Amelio family.

Goodfried will depart UTA in a month to become president of D’Amelio Family Enterprises, The Los Angeles Times reports, noting that the split is amicable and the family will continue to be represented by UTA.

The D’Amelios — including parents Marc and Heidi, and sisters Dixie and Charli — count a combined 150 million followers on TikTok, with Charli being the platform’s most followed creator by a longshot with 93 million fans. The family is looking to spin their online fame into a full-fledged media empire complete with books, podcasts, and a reality show that is currently in the works. The Los Angeles Times notes that the D’Amelios could be filling a void being left vacant by the Kardashians, whose E! reality series is going off the air after 20 seasons.

“I think they could be as big as any family that have taken over American media,” Goodfried told the Times of the D’Amelios. “The demand is insanely high to get to see another family who is very warm and very loving and cares about each other but living in kind of an extraordinary situation,”

“The family’s recent goal has been to form a D’Amelio media company,” Marc D’Amelio added in a statement. “Greg was the ideal choice for the internal role, not only because of the success we’ve had with him thus far through our working relationship at UTA, but also because he brings years of experience and expertise from the entertainment and media industries paired with his past experience as an entrepreneur.”

Goodfried joined UTA in 2014 and has headed up its digital division alongside Alison Berman. He is not the only agent to have departed the agency realm in recent months, following the formation of Range Media in September — a new talent management and brand development firm founded by a slew of top agents from CAA, WME, and UTA. Facebook vet Kai Gayoso is heading up digital for that venture.

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Spotify Now Lets Podcasters Use Its Entire Music Library In Their Shows

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Spotify is now letting creators use any song from its massive music library in their podcasts.

It and Anchor, the podcast publishing platform it acquired last year, have opened more than 600 million tracks to creators in the U.S., U.K., Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and Ireland, Variety reports. Anchor users in those regions can include as many full songs in their shows as they want, for free—and though the feature isn’t open to the rest of the world (yet), episodes that include songs are available to Spotify listeners globally.

Spotify told Variety the feature has been one of users’ most requested adds.

There is one catch for creators who may be hoping to sprinkle quick snatches of songs in their shows for pizzazz: It appears the feature only lets podcasters embed entire songs. That’s because Spotify intends for the tool to kick off a new, radio-esque genre of podcasting where hosts interject bits of commentary between tracks.

To illustrate this format, the platform is launching its own slate of seven original podcasts:

  • Halleloo Happy Hour with DJ Shangela, hosted by Shangela of RuPaul’s Drag Race
  • Murder Ballads, exploring the history and folklore of America’s “most mysterious and violent songs”
  • 60 Songs That Explain the 90s, hosted by The Ringer music critic Rob Harvilla
  • Our Love Song, which welcomes one couple per week to discuss the music that shaped their romance
  • Conspiracy Theories: Music Edition, a chronicle of the music industry’s top theories and rumors
  • Rock This with Allison Hagendorf, about rock and alternative culture
  • and 10 Songs That Made Me, where each week, an artist or celebrity shares their top-10 playlist

Artists whose music is used in podcasts will be compensated for each stream, in the same way and at the same rate as they normally are for regular plays of their songs.

“We really feel like this is going to be another tool for creators to unlock their passion for storytelling,” Liz Gateley, Spotify’s head of network programming, told Variety. Spotify also expects record labels and artists will use the feature promotionally, she added.

You can see Anchor’s introduction of the new feature below.

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Teespring Will Now Let Creators Vend ‘Digital Products’, Like Photo Presets And Ebooks

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Creator commerce platform Teespring is launching a new so-called ‘Digital Products‘ selling category that will enable creators to vend items beyond physical merchandise, including preset photo filters, ebooks, and premium content.

Teespring — which vends products from 450,000 creators and operates integrations with YouTube, TikTok, Instagram, and Twitch — says it wants to enable creators to diversify their product offerings amid a shift toward social shopping precipitated by the coronavirus pandemic, and the fact that non-apparel merch items on Teespring are on track to outsell apparel products by the end of 2021, according to the company.

“With this new architecture, we can support creators like never before, unlocking a broad spectrum of commerce and allowing them to engage with all of their fans through a variety of physical and digital products,” Teespring CEO Chris Lamontagne said in a statement. “We have seen a significant shift in how creators are selling and by 2021 we expect to see double lift in non-apparel products on the platform.”

Digital Products — which has been in testing by the likes of TikToker Bonnie RZM (who has made thousands of dollars thus far selling her presets, Teespring says) and the animated YouTube series Simon’s Cat (which is vending digital planners) — will be available to all of the roughly 450,000 creators on Teespring. Creating Digital Product listings is free, Teespring says, with no additional monthly charges or hosting fees.

The addition of Digital Products to Teespring follows its merch integration with TikTok in August. The company also recently unveiled its Brand Partnership Program, which enables creators like Alex Wassabi to print their merch on items from top brands like Nike, Champion, Puma, and Russell Athletic.

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YouTube Expands COVID Misinformation Policy To Ban Vaccine Conspiracies

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YouTube has expanded its pandemic misinformation policies to officially ban videos that spread conspiracy theories and other lies about COVID-19 vaccines.

Content will be removed if it contains health information that contradicts expert consensus from the World Health Organization and other regional medical authorities, the platform tells Tubefilter. It’s specifically cracking down on conspiracies, including claims that the shot will kill people, sterilize people, or implant them with government microchips.

Videos that engage in general discussion about “broad concerns” over the vaccine will still be allowed, YouTube told Reuters. Only videos that deliberately spread harmful misinformation will be taken down.

YouTube also tells Tubefilter that it will suppress COVID-related borderline content. (Suppression usually means videos will be excluded from search results and hidden from recommendation algorithms.) It adds that in the coming weeks, it will reveal more about what it’s doing to combat vaccine misinformation and boost knowledge from authoritative sources.

The policies being expanded today were introduced at the beginning of this year; since February, YouTube has removed more than 200,000 videos containing COVID misinformation, it says.

YouTube isn’t alone in rolling out new rules ahead of a potential vaccine. Yesterday, Facebook revealed that it has stopped accepting ads that discourage people from receiving not just the COVID vaccine, but all “safe and effective” vaccinations.

“We don’t want these ads on our platform,” Facebook said.

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YouTube Expands COVID Misinformation Policy To Ban Vaccine Conspiracies

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YouTube has expanded its pandemic misinformation policies to officially ban videos that spread conspiracy theories and other lies about COVID-19 vaccines.

Content will be removed if it contains health information that contradicts expert consensus from the World Health Organization and other regional medical authorities, the platform tells Tubefilter. It’s specifically cracking down on conspiracies, including claims that the shot will kill people, sterilize people, or implant them with government microchips.

Videos that engage in general discussion about “broad concerns” over the vaccine will still be allowed, YouTube told Reuters. Only videos that deliberately spread harmful misinformation will be taken down.

YouTube also tells Tubefilter that it will suppress COVID-related borderline content. (Suppression usually means videos will be excluded from search results and hidden from recommendation algorithms.) It adds that in the coming weeks, it will reveal more about what it’s doing to combat vaccine misinformation and boost knowledge from authoritative sources.

The policies being expanded today were introduced at the beginning of this year; since February, YouTube has removed more than 200,000 videos containing COVID misinformation, it says.

YouTube isn’t alone in rolling out new rules ahead of a potential vaccine. Yesterday, Facebook revealed that it has stopped accepting ads that discourage people from receiving not just the COVID vaccine, but all “safe and effective” vaccinations.

“We don’t want these ads on our platform,” Facebook said.

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Digital Creator-Focused Charity Platform Tiltify Raises $6.5 Million

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Creator-centric fundraising platform Tiltify, which has been harnessed by the likes of Jacksepticeye, Markiplier, DrLupo, Jordan Fisher, and Emilia Clarke to raise money for a whole host of charities, has just announced a venture funding round of its own totaling $6.5 million.

The Series A was led by Pace Capital, and brings Tiltify’s total funds raised to $9 million. As part of the investment, Pace general partner Chris Paik will join Tiltify’s board of directors. The company said it is not disclosing its valuation in light of the funding.

Tiltify, which provides creators with livestreaming fundraising tools — and which has been used to power charitable events like StreamAid on Twitch, in response to the coronavirus pandemic — is on track to generate more than $100 million in donations to its charity partners by year’s end. Founded in 2013, Tiltify says it has more than 2,000 such partners, including United Way Worldwide, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Save The Children, No Kid Hungry, and the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

Tiltify already furnishes creators with live, interactive, telethon-style technology that engages donors to invest in their chosen causes. The funding will be used to help Tiltify “go beyond traditional fundraising [to serve] the next generation of socially-conscious consumers,” the company said, without providing additional details. Funds will also be used to add new features to the existing platform, including polls, rewards, milestones, visual overlays, and animations.

Tiltify also currently operates longstanding partnerships at the platform level, having developed a Twitch donation extension as well as TikTok’s inaugural in-app charity tool, Donate Stickers.

“This has been one of the most difficult years in recent history for America and around the globe, desperately catalyzing the need to support causes worldwide,” Tiltify co-founder and CEO Michael Wasserman said in a statement. “This funding will help us accelerate development and team-building to make sure we can deliver the best tools to creators for them to continue supporting charities.”

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Digital Creator-Focused Charity Platform Tiltify Raises $6.5 Million

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Creator-centric fundraising platform Tiltify, which has been harnessed by the likes of Jacksepticeye, Markiplier, DrLupo, Jordan Fisher, and Emilia Clarke to raise money for a whole host of charities, has just announced a venture funding round of its own totaling $6.5 million.

The Series A was led by Pace Capital, and brings Tiltify’s total funds raised to $9 million. As part of the investment, Pace general partner Chris Paik will join Tiltify’s board of directors. The company said it is not disclosing its valuation in light of the funding.

Tiltify, which provides creators with livestreaming fundraising tools — and which has been used to power charitable events like StreamAid on Twitch, in response to the coronavirus pandemic — is on track to generate more than $100 million in donations to its charity partners by year’s end. Founded in 2013, Tiltify says it has more than 2,000 such partners, including United Way Worldwide, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Save The Children, No Kid Hungry, and the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

Tiltify already furnishes creators with live, interactive, telethon-style technology that engages donors to invest in their chosen causes. The funding will be used to help Tiltify “go beyond traditional fundraising [to serve] the next generation of socially-conscious consumers,” the company said, without providing additional details. Funds will also be used to add new features to the existing platform, including polls, rewards, milestones, visual overlays, and animations.

Tiltify also currently operates longstanding partnerships at the platform level, having developed a Twitch donation extension as well as TikTok’s inaugural in-app charity tool, Donate Stickers.

“This has been one of the most difficult years in recent history for America and around the globe, desperately catalyzing the need to support causes worldwide,” Tiltify co-founder and CEO Michael Wasserman said in a statement. “This funding will help us accelerate development and team-building to make sure we can deliver the best tools to creators for them to continue supporting charities.”

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YouTube, NIVA To Host Virtual #SOSFEST Benefiting Independent Concert Venues

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From Oct. 16 through 18, YouTube and the National Independent Venue Association (NIVA) will host a three-day virtual music festival that aims to “help shape a path forward for independent venues, touring artists, and the live concert industry,” YouTube says.

#SOSFEST will feature live performances from more than 30 bands and artists, including the Foo Fighters, Reba McEntire, Miley Cyrus, Marshmello and Demi Lovato, Dave Matthews, and Major Lazer. Performances will be recorded live at more than two dozen of America’s well-known independent concert venues, all of which have been financially impacted by COVID-19.

The festival is the first programming to emerge from YouTube’s content and fundraising partnership with NIVA—a coalition of 2,800+ American music venues, promoters, and festivals that is currently lobbying the government to provide Small Business Association grants for its struggling industry. According to NIVA, its members are forecast to lose a collective $8.9 billion of revenue this year. 90% of them will have to shutter permanently if they don’t get some kind of financial relief within six months, it said.

During #SOSFEST, YouTube will call for donations to NIVA’s Emergency Relief Fund, which is helping venues pay for essentials like rent, staff salaries, personal protective equipment, taxes, utilities, and expenses from COVID-cancelled events.

Around $6,700 has been raised for the fund through YouTube Giving, according to a raiser posted on NIVA’s official YouTube channel.

#SOSFEST kicks off Friday, Oct. 16 at 8 p.m. Eastern with Alec Benjamin performing at Los Angeles’ Hotel Café. You can see the event’s complete performance schedule here.

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YouTube, NIVA To Host Virtual #SOSFEST Benefiting Independent Concert Venues

  • Post category:Other

From Oct. 16 through 18, YouTube and the National Independent Venue Association (NIVA) will host a three-day virtual music festival that aims to “help shape a path forward for independent venues, touring artists, and the live concert industry,” YouTube says.

#SOSFEST will feature live performances from more than 30 bands and artists, including the Foo Fighters, Reba McEntire, Miley Cyrus, Marshmello and Demi Lovato, Dave Matthews, and Major Lazer. Performances will be recorded live at more than two dozen of America’s well-known independent concert venues, all of which have been financially impacted by COVID-19.

The festival is the first programming to emerge from YouTube’s content and fundraising partnership with NIVA—a coalition of 2,800+ American music venues, promoters, and festivals that is currently lobbying the government to provide Small Business Association grants for its struggling industry. According to NIVA, its members are forecast to lose a collective $8.9 billion of revenue this year. 90% of them will have to shutter permanently if they don’t get some kind of financial relief within six months, it said.

During #SOSFEST, YouTube will call for donations to NIVA’s Emergency Relief Fund, which is helping venues pay for essentials like rent, staff salaries, personal protective equipment, taxes, utilities, and expenses from COVID-cancelled events.

Around $6,700 has been raised for the fund through YouTube Giving, according to a raiser posted on NIVA’s official YouTube channel.

#SOSFEST kicks off Friday, Oct. 16 at 8 p.m. Eastern with Alec Benjamin performing at Los Angeles’ Hotel Café. You can see the event’s complete performance schedule here.

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