Universal Music Group are in a heated feud with TikTok, deciding to pull the plug on all of their artists’ jams after failing to reach a deal with the platform.
Universal is the powerhouse behind heaps of our favourite stars including SZA, Drake, Post Malone and Kendrick Lamar, making up a total of 78,000 albums available for use within the app.
But as of today, Feb 1 (NZT), they're saying peace out. Why? 'Cause Universal wants their artists to be swimming in the cash they deserve when their tracks hit our FYPs.
They claim TikTok's proposed agreements didn’t meet their “responsibilities” as a managing company.
In an intense open letter, Universal called out TikTok for “bullying”.
“As our negotiations continued, TikTok attempted to bully us into accepting a deal worth less than the previous deal, far less than fair market value and not reflective of their exponential growth,” they wrote.
Universal added: “TikTok’s tactics are obvious: use its platform power to hurt vulnerable artists and try to intimidate us into conceding to a bad deal that undervalues music and shortchanges artists and songwriters as well as their fans. We will never do that.”
TikTok wasn’t taking a back seat though, firing back: "It is sad and disappointing that Universal Music Group has put their greed above the interests of their artists and songwriters.”
"Despite Universal's false narrative and rhetoric, the fact is they have chosen to walk away from the powerful support of a platform with well over a billion users that serves as a free promotional and discovery vehicle for their talent," they continued.
No need to stress for our favourite artists though – they’ll be all good.
TikTok only accounts for about 1% of Universal's total revenue. And being worth a whopping USD $55 billion, we’re sure it won’t make too much of a dent in their pockets.
It does suck for all the TikTokers who won’t be able to add the music they love to their content.