YouTube paid $6 billion to the music industry in the last year

Labels and digital publishers

By Andy Malt | Posted on Wednesday, September 14, 2022

YouTube has announced that it has given over $6 billion to the music industry in the twelve months to June this year. That, he says, represents a $2 billion year-over-year increase, with 30% of the payment coming from music used in user-generated content.

In a blog post announcing the numbers, YouTube’s global head of music, Lyor Cohen, said, “We want our dual ad and subscription engine to be the number one revenue contributor to the [music] by 2025. This is why YouTube monetizes all music formats (short and long videos, audio tracks, live, etc.), on all platforms (desktop, tablet, mobile and TV), in more than 100 countries. And the overall watch time of music content on YouTube on desktop, tablet, mobile and TV continues to increase year on year.”

“As our twin engine continues to purr,” he continues, warming to his metaphor, “we are witnessing profound changes in the music. We must accompany this movement to be the best place for every music fan. Fans want to discover, consume and participate in music across multiple content formats, and only YouTube can deliver all of this experience in one place.”

“We just saw that play out with the release of Blackpink’s ‘Pink Venom’,” he adds. “Fans went from the music video teaser, to the Shorts challenge, to the music video premiere live stream and beyond. Then WOW: ‘Pink Venom’ became the biggest 24-hour debut music video of 2022, and the third-biggest 24-hour music debut of all time. Adorable stuff.

In addition to the royalty stats, Cohen’s blog post also misleads YouTube’s TikTok rival, Shorts, claiming it now generates more than 30 billion views per day. And, he says “we’re creating long-term monetization solutions for shorts” promising that there will be “more to share on that soon.”


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