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Merlin Strikes Global Licensing Deal With Short Form Video App TikTok

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NEW YORK (CelebrityAccess) — Merlin, the digital rights agency for indie labels, announced it has signed a multi-territory licensing deal with short-form video platform TikTok.

The agreement, which goes into effect immediately, will allow Merlin’s represented independent music repertoire to be licensed for use on TikTok worldwide.

Merlin represents hundreds of members from more than 60 countries, that includes tens of thousands of independent record labels, distributors and artist management companies. Its members account for approximately 15% of the global music market.

The TikTok app, which was originally developed in China but which has since gone worldwide with more than 1.5 billion downloads, allows users to create short-form (and by short, we mean 15 seconds) videos to share with both friends and strangers.

The video service provides users with a selection of background music for inclusion as background in created videos.

Users can then post TikTok videos of themselves ‘reacting’ to other TikTok videos, or create ‘Duet’ videos that showcase them performing alongside of the original.

Artists who make content for TikTok include Cosmo Sheldrake (AWAL), Dirty Heads (Better Noise), Falco Punch & Scooter (Kontor New Media), Los Palmeras (Leader Entertainment), Major Lazer (mtheory), Official HIGE DANdism (Pony Canyon), Reik & Haze (Cinq Recordings), Sampa The Great (Ninja Tune), Tokyo’s Revenge (Foundation Media) and Valentino Khan (Mad Decent).

As well, TikTok played a key role in the viral spread of Lil Nas X’s 2019 smash hit “Old Town Road” when he used the platform to create memes promoting the video before it was picked up by TikTok.

Jeremy Sirota, CEO, Merlin, said: “This partnership with TikTok is very significant for us.

“We are seeing a new generation of music services and a new era of music-related consumption, much of it driven by the global demand for independent music.

“Merlin members are increasingly using TikTok for their marketing campaigns, and today’s partnership ensures that they and their artists can also build new and incremental revenue streams.”

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