The National Music Publishers’ Association is calling on Congress to investigate the ever-growing app TikTok over potential violation of U.S. copyright laws.
According to a letter sent by NMPA, the popular video app is consistently violating the rights of songwriters and music publishers.
In a letter sent to Senator Marco Rubio on Wednesday, Oct. 16, the NMPA asks Congress to investigate TikTok over potential copyright theft.
“The scale of TikTok’s copyright infringement in the U.S. is likely considerable and deserves scrutiny,” the letter from NMPA President/CEO David Israelite reads. “We hope that if Congress looks further into matters relating to TikTok that copyright theft is included in the scope of its examination.”
The letter adds, “In addition to important censorship concerns, it appears that TikTok has consistently violated U.S. copyright law and the rights of songwriters and music publishers. Many videos uploaded to TikTok incorporate musical works that have not been licensed and for which copyright owners are not being paid.”
While the letter mentions that several publishers have negotiated licensing deals with TikTok, it claims a “large part” of the industry doesn’t have agreements in place.
Meanwhile, a TikTok spokesperson responded to the NMPA letter in a statement to Billboard.
“TikTok has broad licensing coverage across the music publishing industry covering many thousands of publishers and songwriters and millions of copyrights, and has paid royalties since its inception. The platform has spurred the success of artists and songwriters worldwide through its viral meme culture, driving chart hits and building household names. We are proud to engage with and support the music community.”
Music has continued to play a key part in the growth of the app, with many artists such as Panic! At The Disco, Lil Nas X and more taking advantage of the platform.