Instagram has music licensing deals for user-generated content through parent company Facebook, but even it recently had to clarify its guidelines for people broadcasting music on the platform. The wider question of licensing for online livestreams is provoking debate across the world, including this week in Kenya.
The Kenya Copyright Board (KECOBO) has delivered a warning to local DJs who are streaming sets online while taking donations from viewers and listeners. “When a DJ creates a live stream and starts broadcasting music to the Internet, he has become a radio station. He needs licences from copyright owners or Collective Management Organisations,” said the body, as reported by the Nairobi News.
KECOBO hasn’t said how (or whether) it will be taking action against DJs who are unlicensed. It’s an interesting question of liability: if platforms aren’t responsible and/or don’t have deals in place, does that fall to the individual DJs instead?