With Atlantic Equities having just recently downgraded Warner Music Group stock (NASDAQ: WMG) over the “rapid development of AI-created music,” Access Industries’ Deezer is now taking steps to label tracks created by artificial intelligence.
The Paris-headquartered streaming platform announced its music-identification plans today, in a brief release that was emailed to DMN. Through 2023’s first five months, the prevalence of AI works has increased dramatically, with a substantial number of (authorized and unauthorized) tracks pouring onto streaming services.
Predictably, the Big Three labels are pushing back against this unprecedented influx of releases, which are being fueled by a growing collection of AI music generators. Universal Music Group kicked off 2023 by criticizing “bad actors” in the industry, for instance, and proceeded to ink streaming-reform partnerships with Tidal and Deezer.
Sony Music Entertainment’s head has also taken aim at “low quality and meaningless volume” on streaming platforms, whereas the initially mentioned Warner Music Group has acknowledged it’s experimenting “with different streaming models.”
Amid these efforts – and adjacent warnings about AI’s potential as well as calls for enhanced regulatory requirements – Deezer says it’s leading the way on the detection front “to protect the future of music streaming.”
According to Deezer – home to about 9.3 million paid users as of Q1’s end – the initiative centers largely on “a set of cutting-edge tools” designed to detect AI music, which the streaming service then intends to “tag” accordingly. While it appears that the campaign will extend to all artificial intelligence music, Deezer is poised to zero in at the outset on “songs using synthetic voices of existing artists.”
Additionally, Deezer isn’t shying away from acknowledging that the classification system will lay the groundwork for “a remuneration model that distinguishes between different types of music creation.”
“Our goal is to weed out illegal and fraudulent content, increase transparency, and develop a new remuneration system where professional artists are rewarded for creating valuable content,” elaborated Deezer CEO Jeronimo Folgueira. “This is why we have embraced the discussion around a new artist centric model, and we are now also developing tools to detect AI-generated content.”
On the rollout front, it’s unclear when exactly said tools (expected to be powered by Deezer’s “proprietary ‘Radar’ technology”) will launch. In any event, it’ll be worth monitoring the announcement’s potential impact on other streaming players; more than a few seemingly unauthorized soundalike tracks are still making waves on YouTube, for example, with many non-infringing AI works arriving on Spotify and elsewhere.
When the market closed today, Deezer stock (DEEZR on the Euronext) was valued at €2.24/$2.40 per share. The service began June by officially debuting a meditation app called “Zen by Deezer” in France, and separately, Universal Music Group has embraced AI as part of its own effort to cash in on the digital-relaxation market.