Face The Music

Oh, Facebook. How we all knew you when we were too young, too stupid, and too gullible to sound like actual, cynical adults. If you go through my account and you go all the way back to the dark ages of the early 2010’s, you will be extremely shocked at how improved my writing has become. Also, you’d be amazed at how many pointless things I liked, commented on, and bragged about. 12-year-old me’s senses of humor and rhetoric are almost esoteric. Thank whichever deity you believe in that the dark ages are over and I can now carry a mostly coherent conversation!

In this past election season (please God, make it go away), Facebook noticed a spike in use. For the social media giant, this would appear to be a good thing. However, there’s something troubling about the data coming in for Facebook. As researchers are calling it, Facebook is, and has been, past its peak. Things are getting to the point where the price of the stock isn’t worth what the company is actually doing.

(Are we really surprised that Facebook is headed toward its 3-flush salute like a carnival goldfish? I’m not. I mean, we all thought MySpace was the bomb until Facebook came around. Then Twitter became popular, followed by Instagram, Snapchat, and now a resurgence of Twitter. All the while, Facebook’s just been hanging out and we’re all wondering why. It isn’t as hobby-friendly as Pinterest or as underground and culty as Tumblr. It’s really about time.)

Anyway, one of the biggest criticisms on Facebook is coming from the music business. We all know these God-awful click-bait videos that play instantly once you scroll across them. In addition to these rodents, Facebook can be used to share music videos, promotional material, and whatever else an artist wants to use to brand themselves.

That’s all well and good, but do you know how much you get paid per Facebook view on your video that you worked your butt off on? Pretty much nothing. You can make more money off of YouTube streams, and, if you know anything about how garbage YouTube’s rates are, this is really pathetic.

Facebook administrators acknowledge the issue of content on the site and agree that creators should be paid. But the big question is how they will be able to do this. The goal was to start out with smaller-form content and then naturally progress. But, in order to be able to pay their creators, Facebook would need to further raise the prices of their stocks, making them more and more unattractive to potential shareholders. And, before Facebook can even think about paying these creators, licenses need to be obtained. That’s right. Facebook currently has no music licensing at the moment. I’m confused too.

I’m pretty sure I speak for content creators, and common sense, when I say that this is a problem. Facebook is aware of how big a platform it is and how it can launch movements. As a social media site, it is vital for artists and writers and publishers. But, without licenses, these people can’t be paid, despite the fact that a significant chunk of their work is displayed and taken advantage of on the site. I don’t know whose idea it was to overlook this, but they should be twiddling their thumbs in awkward silence at this point.

As long as Facebook is still around, it’s still a viable platform for marketing, advertising, and branding. All this being said, don’t expect to make a dime off Facebook streaming your content for quite some time. Possibly, don’t expect it at all. It’s gonna be a while before they get all the licenses they need so they can pay the creators and they may never get all of them.

Or you can just join us cynics in the back and wait for Facebook to go down in a blaze of some sort. Glory, infamy, at this point, we really don’t care.

If you’d like to read the article that prompted this post, click here.

Once again, this has been the view from 214.



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