YouTube Adds Songwriter, Label, and Publisher Credits to Millions of Songs

by Garrett Gomez in Announcements May 16, 2018

As of today, over half a billion videos on YouTube will carry songwriter, label, and publisher data – and that’s just the beginning.

According to a recent blog post, YouTube will start crediting videos across its platform. Once users click “show more,” the drop down will display all the information about the artists, songwriters, labels, and publishers. Likewise, there will be a link to the Official Artist Channel and official music video when available. Titled, “Music in this video,” YouTube hopes to “provide greater recognition and exposure to the people who contribute to the creative process.” Check out the information on Lund’s dropdown below.

The move comes three months after Spotify announced it was adding songwriter credits to its desktop platform. In contrast, YouTube highlighted that they achieved this new feature with the incorporation of metadata from labels, publishers, and music licensing societies from around the world. With the help of YouTube’s Content ID technology, copyright owners will be able to identify and manage their content more easily.

This is undoubtedly a great step in the right direction. However, YouTube might set off some alarms from PROs, since it seems like they might be building something similar to its own proprietary Global Rights Database for music – but only time will tell. At least for right now, the influx of credits into songs across YouTube will ultimately help aspiring artists get noticed.

Likewise, many key players in the music industry are excited by YouTube’s new addition. Martin Bandier, Chairman and CEO of Sony/ATV Music Publishing said:

“Songwriters are essential to the success of the music industry, but too often their critical role gets overlooked. It is why I have long called for all online music services to properly acknowledge their contribution by displaying writer credits. This move by YouTube is an important step forward to deliver that goal and one which Sony/ATV welcomes.”

Robert Ashcroft, CEO, PRS For Music commented:

“Unlike with CDs, and LPs before that, songwriters are not generally credited for their work on digital services and platforms; I welcome the steps that YouTube is taking to right this wrong and look forward to supporting their efforts on behalf of all our members.”

It is very exciting to see the development YouTube has unveiled. We will continue to watch how the musical landscape continues to change for artists and fans worldwide.