Mountain View (CA) – Google’s video sharing site Youtube has struck an agreement with the British MCPS-PRS Alliance to provide royalties to artists whose songs appear on user created videos.
The agreement comes in the form of wholesale music licensing. The AP reports that Google will license more than 10 million pieces of music from the MCPS-PRS Alliance, a British group in charge of collecting royalties for music composers, writers, and publishers. It is believed the cost of such a move will be well in excess of $50 million, though financial terms were not disclosed.
Disbursement to individual artists will be based on estimated use, said the British group. “We do have an agreement from them to put in place various technologies that will allow them to identify music that is being used, to report that back and to make appropriate distribution payments,” said Andrew Shaw, the managing director for the Alliance’s broadcast and online division.
It’s a big concession for Google, which has always been adamant that Youtube was not violating copyright infringement laws.
There has been so such agreement yet in the US, though Google has agreed to various temporary deals with copyright holders. Viacom is still looming over the online giant with a $1 billion lawsuit filed against Google for copyright infringement.