Meta Copyright Rules: How to Legally Use Music on Facebook & Instagram 2023
Everything you need to know about using music on Instagram & Facebook and how to avoid copyright strikes
About the AuthorCovering the intersection of copyright law, music, and social media. Full-time content marketer, and part-time journalist.
Everything you need to know about using music on Instagram & Facebook and how to avoid copyright strikes. Follow these tips to protect your videos from getting blocked, or muted.
- How to Pick the Right Music for Facebook
- What are Meta’s copyright policies for music?
- How does Meta enforce copyright policies?
- How can I legally use copyrighted music in my videos?
- Is there an easier way to add music to my videos?
Under the parent company Meta, are two very popular social platforms, Instagram and Facebook. Over the years, they’ve become increasingly video-centric to compete with emerging platforms like TikTok, but also other big players like Youtube and Twitch. As copyright law evolves, Instagram and Facebooking are under pressure to fine-tune their copyright policies, enforcement, and tracking software.
In this article, we’ll run through Meta’s overarching copyright policies, tracking systems, and how to pick the right music for each platform.
How to Pick the Right Music for Facebook:
Facebook is a popular choice for showcasing original content. The music you choose for your video content shouldn’t be an afterthought or finishing touch, but a crucial element in your overall content strategy. Music is a powerful tool in evoking emotion—and as such, it can help guide and direct your audience to feel what you want them to feel. For unboxing videos or gameplay content, you may choose a hip-hop beat, techno, or house music to convey a casual coolness to the viewer. On the other hand, makeup tutorials tend to have energetic, upbeat pop and dance beats that make viewers feel like they’re getting ready for a night out.
How to Pick the Right Music for Instagram:
Similarly to Facebook, choosing music that emotive and guides your viewers is crucial. Generally, your Instagram videos have more reach when they are scored (i.e set to music) but here's another factor to consider. Instagram has a variety of video length formats:
- Stories: Up to 15 seconds
- Reels: Up to 90 seconds
- Feed Video: 3 Seconds- 60 Seconds
- IGTV Video: 15 minutes from a mobile device or 60 minutes when uploading from a computer (note: if you are a verified account you might qualify for longer)
- Live Video: Up to 4 hours
Picking the right song at the right length can make the difference between a video that makes people stop scrolling and one swipe past.
What are Meta’s copyright policies for music?
For both Instagram and Facebook, users must comply with the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (a.k.a DMCA.) This gives copyright holders the ability to file claims and protect their intellectual property on digital platforms like Meta.
How does Meta enforce copyright policies?
Meta has a similar tracking system to Youtube’s Content ID that comprehensively scans for copyrighted material on its platform. The Rights Manager Tool essentially monitors video content uploaded to all its social networks and works to block, mute, or take down any videos that are found to match content found in its reference database. This database is part of the platform’s Creator Studio, which gives rights holders the opportunity to monetize, track, or whitelist various uses of their IP (intellectual property. If a person repeatedly posts content that violates IP rights (more than five counts), then their channel is being reviewed and is at risk of termination.
Meta is vigilant about monitoring live video as well as VODs. Using music without the right permission often results in your broadcast being muted or even blocked. Remember, this can happen unintentionally if you have background music in your stream. It’s also worth noting that Meta has guidelines that factor into what warrants a muting (i.e how much of the total video has music, how many songs are featured, or feature duration of said song.)
When the Rights Manager identifies content that matches a reference file in its database, it will be demonetized. In this case, your video could also be muted, but even if the mute is lifted, your video will remain demonetized. You can file an appeal if you think this is a mistake. Read more about demonetization here.
Meta’s strike system applies to any violations on the platform (copyright-related or not) so it can be a little confusing. But, if a rightsholder files a complaint against your content, Meta states that they will remove it, and apply a strike. But they also say “whether (they) apply a strike depends on the severity of the content, the context in which it was shared, and when it was posted.”
Generally, however, all strikes on your channel expire after a year and Meta’s strike system goes as follows:
One strike: Warning and no further restrictions.
Two strikes: One-day restriction from creating content, such as posting, commenting, using Facebook or IG Live, or creating any page.
Three strikes: 3-day restriction from creating content.
Four strikes: 7-day restriction from creating content.
Five or more strikes: 30-day restriction from creating content.
How can I legally use copyrighted music in my videos?
The only way to get to use protected music in your Instagram or Facebook videos is to get permission directly from the copyright owner and negotiate a license. Merely crediting the owner is not enough to protect yourself from copyright complaints — particularly if the song is used in a commercial capacity. Unfortunately, this route can also be costly. Some contracts may charge a fee every time the audio is played or limit the number of times a song can be played in a video before accruing additional fees.
To further complicate matters, when it comes to copyright laws within music, both the sound recording (a.k.a.the master recordings) and composition are considered two separate works of intellectual property. And they are protected separately. Music composition rights protect the work of composers, lyricists, and songwriters, while sound recording copyrights protect performers, producers, and sound engineers.
If this sounds like an expensive headache, you’re right. Thankfully, there is an easier path to adding tracks to your Twitter videos: royalty-free music.
Is there an easier way to music to my Meta videos?
Given the intricacies of copyright law, you may be wondering if there’s an easier way to find music for your Meta videos without ending up on the wrong side of the law. In comes, royalty-free music. And where do you find royalty-free music? And how do you budget for individual tracks that may vary wildly in price?
That’s where Slip.Stream can help. We provide easy-to-search royalty-free music. In fact, we have the largest royalty-free music catalog in the world. And our model allows individual creators to have unlimited access to unlimited track downloads for personal use.
Slip.Stream is also built to avoid strikes and paperwork frustrations. All of our tracks are unique to our platform, and none of our tracks are entered into Content ID, preventing DMCA issues. This leaves you more time to do what you do best: create engaging video content.