Friendly Music Service Lets YouTubers Buy Licensed Songs for Use In Video music e1277753952269 One of the most common ways that YouTube users violate copyright laws is by using unlicensed background music in their video.  Unfortunately, this act also tends to get videos pulled, after copyright holders are alerted to the infringement via YouTube's Content ID service.  And to be fair, a lot of users are just flat-out ignorant of what copyright law says they can and can't do with someone else's piece of music.

But now there's a new service from Rumblefish designed to help users find appropriate soundtrack music for their videos without having to resort to copyright violations.  Starting tomorrow, the independent music licensing company is offering songs from its catalog for $1.99—to YouTube content producers only.  They've set up a standalone website, called, for users to sign up and purchase song licenses.

The license will grant the video creator the uses of that piece of music for the life of the video, with one gigantic catch:  the video cannot be used to make money.  That means you won't be able to place ads on your YouTube video if you use this new Rumblefish license.  However, you can upgrade to a commercial license that, naturally, costs a bit more money.

The other fairly major catch is that this license does not grant use for songs by major label artists.  So if you're looking for the very latest Top 40 single to use as your background music, you're out of luck here.  However, there are still over 35,000 songs from the Rumblefish catalog open to you.  As CEO Paul Anthony says:

"A lot of the users of YouTube are the everyday filmmakers, and they don't have an outlet like this.  We're excited about this being a connection point, the first of many steps to make music really easy to use in video.”

It should be noted that Rumblefish hopes to begin adding songs by "name artists" in the coming months, which would only make this service even more useful.

ALSO ►  How Big Brands Hook Viewers with Emotional Content: 4 Takeaways for Video Marketers

So if you're a power user who makes a living off your YouTube videos, this service isn't really for you.  And in truth, you've probably already got another system or service you use for your music.  But for the average user, this is a godsend.

Videos without music are very often not as engaging or entertaining, nor do they feel complete.  Having a cheap way to find and add soundtrack and bumper music should allow a whole slew of users (and businesses) to give their videos just one more layer of professional touch.  It's such a great service for everyday users that YouTube even collaborated with Rumblefish on the creation of FriendlyMusic.

Or, you could just keep using copyrighted music without permission and risk having your videos pulled by YouTube.  I'll be checking out the FriendlyMusic service in the coming weeks and will be sure to report back with a review after using it.

  • Steve

    Sounds like a great service, some details are unclear. As grantcrowell states - will it be okay to embedd these videos in other sites or can they only be played on

    Also, "the video cannot be used to make money. That means you won’t be able to place ads on your YouTube video if you use this new Rumblefish license."

    If I have a small business and am using the videos to promote my business, is that ok? I don't place an ad on my youtube video, but the purpose of the video is to make money by getting attention and interest that will hopefully convert into a customer.

  • Lee at MediaMusicNow

    This sounds like a great idea, there are many people experiencing problems using music in video on YouTube.

    Most avoid the issue with royalty free music, however, even this does not always avoid the copyright messages as many composers are experiencing unauthorised registration of their music to services like Godigital.

    Furthermore, royalty free music licensing fees are often too high for hobby film makers, ours are typically £24.95.

    It is understandable that users will want a low cost solution and I think the service is a good idea. I guess the crucial point will be whether rumble fish has exclusive contract to the music rights. If the rights are non-exclusive they may find their artist have inadvertently had their catalogue uploaded to digital fingerprinting services, (like GoDigital) which will cause adverts to appear or copyright violation messages.

    Does anyone know the source of the music on friendly music?

    • Guest

      Friendly Music gets its music from Rumblefish, a music licensing company that have their own music library, and they now have made a chunk of their library available for the public via Friendly Music.

  • Ronnie Bincer

    This is allowing users to get music they can use (for non partner type videos) when they are creating their videos, vs. "YouTubes' replace your audio track with our music which we allow you to use feature"... right?

    So I guess there is enough software for making videos that doesn't have the "right music" or any music that can be added to the videos?

    The big catch is you can't use the music for a promoted video unless you pay more. Now-a-days YouTube is reaching out more and more to us non partner types and allowing us to let them "promote" a single video (vs. making us a full partner). Which means we have to disclose if we have the right to use the music if YT asks us if we want to make $$ using the video.

    This service may get messy for more and more people because of the "gotcha" points. Too bad they aren't offering royalty free music on the service, that would seem to make it all better.

    And... what about when all those "other sites" scrape the YouTube video and put it elsewhere on the web, it continues to violate copyright there as well right? I know... its messy!

    I'm not sure that this service really has much of a target audience (but maybe I've got blinders on).

  • Grant Crowell

    The question remains as to whether will allow quality commercial music to be published and promoted on videos outside of the YouTube space? (I couldn't find any information on the website, and their own promo video doesn't appear to play on their YouTube channel right now – strange!) Maybe we'll have more answers when they launch tomorrow.