Last week, it was reported that RapGenius.com was among 50 lyrics sites that were sent take-down notices by the National Music Publishers Association (NMPA), requesting that the sites either obtain licenses to publish lyrics or remove copyright lyrics from their sites.
Now, Rap Genius has revealed that it obtained a licensing deal with Sony/ATV Music Publishing, reports Billboard.
Martin Bandier, Chairman & CEO of Sony/ATV Music Publishing, addressed the website, stating that it allows songwriters and fans to connect in a “new and exciting way.”
Other licensing deals are the goal, as Rap Genius co-founder Tom Lehman referred the conversation with other music publishers and said the site’s relationship with artists “will only grow stronger” as more licensing deals are reached.
The ultimate goal, however, is “to add context to all important texts in peoples lives,” said Lehman. Rap Genius has also launched sites for Rock, poetry, and news, and hope to create a paid enterprise service for business users.
Sony/ATV is the world’s largest music publisher with approximately 31% of the global market. However, the majority of songs cataloged by Rap Genius are not yet licensed.
NMPA President and CEO David Israelite explained that he wants to facilitate licensing deals, not shut down unlicensed sites. “We simply want those that are making money off lyrics to be business partners with the songwriters who created the content that is the basis of the sites,” he said.
In 2012, RapGenius.com added Nas as an advisor.