Warner Music is demanding that all of its music videos – including tracks from artists such as AC/DC, Gnarls Barkley, Björk, James Blunt, REM, Green Day and Kylie – are removed from YouTube.
Warner Music Group and Google’s YouTube failed to reach agreement about how the label should be compensated for official and unofficial music videos. Warner Music has therefore called for all of its content to removed from the site. “We simply cannot accept terms that fail to appropriately and fairly compensate recording artists, songwriters, labels and publishers for the value they provide,” said a Warner Music statement.
“It isn’t always possible to maintain these innovative agreements,” Google responded on its blog. “Sometimes, if we can’t reach acceptable business terms, we must part ways with successful partners.”
According to Wired, Universal Music Group says that it’s earning tens of millions of dollars from the site and expects to earn more in the future.
YouTube is offering an Audioswap feature, which lets uploaders select new music for any videos that made use of Warner’s music.
In September 2006 Google announced an agreement to distribute on YouTube the library of music videos from Warner’s “world-renowned roster of artists as well as behind-the-scenes footage, artist interviews, original programming and other special content. In a first-of-its-kind arrangement, YouTube users will be able to incorporate music from WMG’s recorded music catalog into the videos they create and upload onto YouTube.”
At the time, Edgar Bronfman, Chairman and CEO of Warner Music Group, said: “Technology is changing entertainment, and Warner Music is embracing that innovation. Consumer-empowering destinations like YouTube have created a two-way dialogue that will transform entertainment and media forever. As user-generated content becomes more prevalent, this kind of partnership will allow music fans to celebrate the music of their favorite artists, enable artists to reach consumers in new ways, and ensure that copyright holders and artists are fairly compensated.”