Rap Genius Signs Licensing Deal With Universal Music Publishing Group 1

Rap Genius follows its 2013 deal with Sony/ATV with a new deal with Universal Music Publishing Group.

Rap Genius says that is has struck a deal with Universal Music Group, according to billboard.com.

“We love UMPG!” Rap Genius co-founder Ilan Zechory said in a statement, per billboard.com. “They have a truly incredible stable of writers – we will lend them a wheelbarrow for the Grammys they are about to win! Rap Genius lets UMPG’s writers connect with their most obsessed fans and we couldn’t be more excited about solidifying this partnership.”

The parameters of the agreement, which will allow Rap Genius to publish lyrics from such Universal artists as Eminem and Dr. Dre, were not revealed.

The National Music Publishers Association (NMPA) sent 50 sites take-down notices in Novemberrequesting lyrics sites to either obtain licenses to publish lyrics or remove copyright lyrics from their sites.

Rap Genius, which added Nas as an advisor in 2012, was among the sites targeted by the NMPA, even though Rap Genius Co-Founder Ilan Zechory said his company had not heard from the NMPA at the time.

“We can’t wait to have a conversation with them about how all writers can participate in and benefit from the Rap Genius knowledge project,” Zechory said at the time. “Rap Genius is so much more than a lyrics site. The lyrics sites the NMPA refers to simply display song lyrics, while Rap Genius has crowdsourced annotations that give context to all the lyrics line by line, and tens of thousands of verified annotations directly from writers and performers. These layers of context and meaning transform a static, flat lyric page into an interactive, vibrant art experience created by a community of volunteer scholars. Furthermore, music is only a small part of what we do. Rap Genius is an interactive encyclopedia for annotation of all texts – anyone can upload and annotate texts relating to music, news, literature, religion, science, their personal lives, or anything else they want.”

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