YouTube and UK songwriters signs royalties

YouTube has reached a deal with a British licensing organization that collects royalties on behalf of 50,000 composers, songwriters and publishers.

At a press conference Wednesday in London, the MCPS-PRS Alliance, which represents creators of more than 10 million pieces of music, announced a deal that lets people who use Google's video-sharing site incorporate recorded music legally into videos.

The Financial Times reported that YouTube had agreed to pay a flat fee in exchange for licensing the library of music. The alliance will decide how to distribute the revenues to its members based on an estimate of what music has been played on the site, according to the report.

Terms of the deal or the flat fee were not disclosed.

A YouTube spokesman confirmed the agreement.

The licensing organization is working with YouTube on how to identify the high-profile songs that are most often used as background in both professional and user-generated videos posted to the site.

The deal is a boost for YouTube which has been fending off challenges by major media companies that say the site is a haven for piracy of their copyrighted works.

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