THIS is How Artists Continue to Release Music of TikTok Amid UMG Clash with the Chinese App

The UMG-TikTok dispute revolves around disagreements on licensing and artist compensation with UMG alleging inadequate payment and protection for artists.

Updated on Feb 28, 2024  |  05:33 PM IST |  43.5K
TikTok Music  Amid UMG Clash with the Chinese App
Taylor Swift (Instagram)

In a world of catchy beats and viral dances, TikTok has been a music playground for artists, until a clash with Universal Music Group (UMG) threw a silent curveball. UMG’s artists found their tunes muted on TikTok, leaving them without a go-to platform for music promotion. But fear not! The music show must go on. Artists are proving that where there’s creativity, there’s a beat. Let’s dive into the ingenious ways artists are still dropping tunes on TikTok despite the UMG showdown.

Acoustic vibes and tempo twists

UMG artists faced a TikTok mute, but they didn’t hit pause. Instead, they cranked up creativity. Acoustic renditions, tempo tweaks, and clever workarounds are the things that keep the music flowing. Laura Spinelli from Shopkeeper Management said, “People are doing acoustic versions of songs; they are changing up the tempo.” Yes, the beat might have changed, but the show is still on.

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TikTok’s importance for artists

TikTok is really important for artists, it has become a crucial platform for artists to showcase their music. Unlike other platforms, TikTok’s trends are closely linked to songs, making it a valuable tool for music discovery. Although other platforms like Reels and Shorts exist, they don’t have the same impact as TikTok when it comes to promoting music.


Despite the challenges, artists are still posting on TikTok. Some are even uploading their music as original sounds or finding ways to keep their songs on the platform without the official recordings. Additionally, digital marketers are promoting older music from artists outside of the UMG system.

But the good thing is that Artists are now getting chatty, about music insights and how to keep entertaining the fans. TikTok is the land of unofficial jams. Users are uploading bootlegs, edits, and even speeding up with songs.

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While the main stage dims, artists are stepping into the archives. Tim Gerst, CEO of Thinkswell, spills the beans, “We’re going back and pushing a bunch of the back-catalog content.” A blast from the past doesn’t just keep the music alive; it keeps the artist in the spotlight.

While TikTok has been a powerhouse for music promotion, artists are exploring alternative channels. From Instagram Reels to YouTube Shorts, musicians are casting a wider net to reach audiences. By embracing these platforms, they’re ensuring that their music continues to resonate with fans worldwide.

The dispute between UMG and TikTok

The controversy between Universal Music Group (UMG) and TikTok stems from a disagreement over licensing agreements and artist compensation. UMG claims that TikTok isn’t paying artists and songwriters enough and isn’t adequately protecting their rights. When the UMG/TikTok license expired on January 31, songs by popular artists like Taylor Swift, BTS, and Billie Eilish were either removed or muted from the videos. Now, songs licensed by UPMG, Universal’s publishing arm, are also being removed. This means that a significant portion of popular songs like TikTok will be affected. UMG accuses TikTok of offering low payment rates and trying to pressure them into a deal. Some are even sharing ways to use music from other sources, although this violates TikTok’s agreement and could lead to account deactivation.

ALSO READ: BTS, BLACKPINK and FIFTY FIFTY lead TikTok's most listened-to K-pop artists list in 2023

What is the UMG-TikTok dispute about?
The dispute revolves around disagreements on licensing agreements and artist compensation. UMG alleges inadequate payment and protection for artists.

Why are UMG artists' tunes muted on TikTok?
UMG's artists found their tunes muted on TikTok due to the dispute, leaving them without a go-to platform for music promotion.

What alternative channels are artists exploring for music promotion?
Artists are exploring platforms like Instagram Reels and YouTube Shorts to reach audiences and ensure their music continues to resonate with fans worldwide.

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