NIX Solutions: YouTube’s Collaboration with UMG for AI Music Innovation

YouTube is optimistic about the potential of AI to “enhance unique creative expression” but will make every effort to ensure copyright protection. To that end, the company is launching a “YouTube Music AI Incubator” to collaborate with artists, songwriters, and producers. To launch this program, YouTube enlisted the support of Universal Music Group (UMG), which owns the rights to many musical works.

NIX Solutions

UMG’s Approach and Concerns

UMG is in no hurry to use AI. Earlier this year, the company asked streaming services such as Spotify to ban its music from being used to train AI models. UMG has also issued copyright infringement warnings for AI-generated YouTube videos using the work of its artists. When an AI-created song based on vocals by Drake and The Weeknd went viral, UMG demanded that it be removed from Spotify and Apple Music.

UMG’s claims are that copyrighted human-made music is being used to train AI models, which then generate new works without proper authorization or compensation. Therefore, UMG teamed up with YouTube to develop some kind of structure that ensures the payment of remuneration to copyright holders.

YouTube’s Approach and Commitment

YouTube emphasized its historical understanding of the situation, because over the years the company, according to it, “has made huge investments in systems that help balance the interests of copyright holders with the interests of the creative community on YouTube.” The company cited its Content ID system, which pays copyright holders for using their content on the platform, as an example, and suggested that a similar system could be applied to AI music, at least for those “music partners who choose to participate.”

The priority for the full operation of such a system is trust and security. The company has already developed policies regarding the manipulation of content that misleads viewers. It is necessary to ensure that generative AI is not used for copyright infringement, misinformation, and spam. On the contrary, YouTube plans to use AI technology to identify this kind of content.

Shared Vision and Future Prospects

“I’m incredibly excited about AI’s ability to drive creativity around the world, but I recognize that YouTube and the AI vision will only succeed if our partners succeed,” YouTube CEO Neal Mohan said in a statement. “Together, we can use this new technology to support artists, songwriters, producers, and the industry as a whole, adding value to fans and pushing the boundaries of creative possibilities.”

NIX Solutions adds that YouTube has promised to provide details on how the new system for AI music will work in the near future in terms of specific technologies, monetization opportunities, and copyright protection policies.