This settlement is less than one week after Twitch reached a similar agreement with the National Music Publishers Association.
Roblox Corporation sued the National Music Publishers Association for $200 million. Today, the NMPA announced that it had entered into a new opt in agreement which allows NMPA members to create their own licensing agreements for their music in Roblox.
The suit was filed in June to address complaints that Roblox charges users to upload music to its platform. Users must purchase “Robux,” Roblox’s real-money currency to upload audio files. Prices are based on length and do not prevent copyright violations.
“Roblox has made hundreds of millions of dollars by requiring users pay for every song they upload to the platform–taking advantage young people’s ignorance about copyright- and then they take almost no action to prevent repeat infringements or alert users to their risks,” David Israelite, CEO of NMPA, stated at the time.
The details of the deal were not revealed today, but Roblox said that they would “work closely with the global music industry to help them unlock new opportunities for music to become more meaningfully integrated into Roblox’s global community.”
“We are moving forward, and we are committed to working with the music industry as a whole to create an exciting new social age of the music business that engages fans, artists in a unprecedented way in this metaverse,” Jon Vlassopulos, Roblox vice president, and global head for music, said.
It is interesting that the timing of Roblox’s settlement announcement comes less than a week following NMPA’s similar (and equally vague) deal announced by Twitch. This follows months of increasing tensions between the two companies. The Roblox settlement also includes an opt-in program that music publishers can use to “bring new facets to both gaming experience and songwriter exposure”, but it does not change the rules regarding music usage by streamers.
I have reached out to Roblox as well as the NMPA to find out more about how the settlement will affect Roblox players. I will keep you updated if I get a response.