Apple Music Is Now Using Shazam Technology To Identify Tracks In Dj Mixes So That Rightsholders Get Paid

September 11

  Apple has announced the creation of a process to properly identify and compensate individual creators involved in making DJ mixes that are streamed on Apple Music.

The process reportedly uses technology from Shazam, and Apple is working with major and independent labels to work out a system whereby streaming royalties are splitted among DJs, labels, and artists who feature in the mixes.

DJ mixes have been streamed 300 million times to date on Apple Music and over 3m of the platform’s subscribers are engaging with DJ mixes each month.

Since the rise of streaming services, identifying and paying rights holders within DJ mixes has traditionally been a bit of a problem, but Apple seems to think that it’s cracked it.. The rise in popularity of the EDM genre has also resulted in an increasing number of remixes, mash-ups, and DJ mixes that incorporate samples from other songs, making working out who should be compensated even harder.

‌Apple Music‌ originally introduced DJ mixes and mash-ups in 2016 through a partnership with Dubset Media Holdings to identify and pay for licensed music within mixes. Now, Apple is using the Shazam technology it acquired in 2018 to identify and compensate everyone whose content appears in a mix.

"Apple Music is the first platform that offers continuous mixes where there's a fair fee involved for the artists whose tracks are included in the mixes and for the artist making those mixes," DJ Charlotte de Witte told TechCrunch on behalf of Apple. "It's a step in the right direction where everyone gets treated fairly. I'm beyond excited to have the chance to provide online mixes again."

As part of the rollout, Apple is showcasing the thousands of mixes already available on the service within its dedicated genre section for DJ mixes within the ‌Apple Music‌ app. Studio K7!'s DJ Kicks archive of mixes will also start rolling out on ‌Apple Music‌, giving users access to mixes that haven't been on the market in over 15 years.

Contrary to some reports, this is not the first time streaming has paid royalties for DJ mixes: Mixcloud has long operated under a radio-style licensing model for example. Startup Dubset also made its name clearing rights for remixes and DJ sets, before its acquisition by Pex in March 2020.

The new technology will also let ‌Apple Music‌ subscribers see the names of individual tracks within a streamed mix, as well as give them the ability to skip or save the songs for listening offline.