Soundcloud is setting it’s new prime moment. 2018 has been a ray of sunshine for one of the world’s most favourite streaming applications.

This month at the ADE conference in the Netherlands Soundcloud made two big announcements:

  • Firstly, that it had partnered with six DJ software companies: Native Instruments, Serato, Virtual DJ, DEX3, Mixvibes and Hercules. After the success from this, they  inked a deal with Dubset that will see the development of ‘next-generation approaches to clearing remixes’ on the platform.
  • Last week SoundCloud announced a deal with Facebook-owned Instagram which will see its new Instagram Stories feature integrated with the music platform.

Underground Independent Music becomes a part of your daily background music thanks to Soundcloud

Instagram story has become an important aspect for the 400 million daily users the app reported earlier this year. This helps the users document a daily documentation with filters, video effects etc.. While Facebook owned Instagram reported tying up with the majors to include music in their stories, many followers of underground, independent music were unable to add their favourite songs.

For a very long time, Soundcloud has housed and been the support for many electronic and indie artists. Today, you can add their music as the background music to your daily life updates.

How the new feature works?

The new feature enables Instagram users to share tracks from SoundCloud to their Instagram ‘Story’ by tapping ‘Share’ on the SoundCloud menu and selecting “Share to Instagram Stories.”

The new SoundCloud + Instagram feature begins rolling out to users immediately, and is available via the latest versions of both mobile apps on iOS and Android.

What else? Direct Monitization.

Spotify opened their doors to independent artists to upload tracks directly to its service in September. Soundcloud, the app that has supported independent music for over a decade now. They had to provide the absolute response to the fellow Stockholm company and did so in a big way.

Earlier this month SoundCloud expanded its direct monetization program, Premier, to hundreds of thousands of users and claims to offer “the power of direct monetization to many times more creators than any other audio service”.

Premier was previously an invite-only program, but it is now being rolled out to Pro and Pro Unlimited ‘creators’ with ‘eligible content’, at no additional cost. Eligible creators are those with at least 5,000 plays in the past month from countries where SoundCloud listener subscriptions and advertising are available (US, UK, Canada, Australia, France, Germany, Ireland, The Netherlands and New Zealand). The feature is planned to be available to many other territories in the near future.

Reforming their “outdated” artist contract

The initial agreement for Premier was criticised by some.  The terms of the contact which an artist has to agree with when signing up to the service were eventually made known to all.

Most notably,  the agreement includes the broad release of all claims against the company (called a “covenant not to sue”) and a mandatory arbitration clause. Artists who sign this agreement agree to never sue the music company or even assist in someone else’s lawsuit against SoundCloud, and to take any disputes to arbitration instead of court.

Spokesperson Sheri Ladner told The Verge

The clause only applies during the term of the commercial deal.

But the contract itself states that this covenant not to sue will be upheld even if an artist stops being a part of the Premier program or leaves SoundCloud altogether.

“The following named sections survive termination or expiry of these Terms and Conditions,” the agreement reads. “RELEASE OF CLAIMS AND COVENANT NOT TO SUE.”

Soundcloud however, were very quick to make the required changes in the agreement soon after which has been e-mailed to every subscribed member of Premier. Good ol’ Soundcloud.

Thanks to these applications making a step towards supporting independent artists, the opportunities definitely see a future growth.

When everyone is at play, how could Soundcloud stay away?

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