Tuesday, 09 Dec 2014

APRA AMCOS has unveiled a world first deal to use Pioneer DJ's new web service product (KUVO) in Australia. Signed recently in Japan, the groundwork is now being set for a full trial with selected nightclubs around the country. APRA AMCOS is confident the trial will lead to KUVO metadata being used in the very near future for nightclub distributions to complement data already being used, including playlists from music recognition technology (MRT). 

This will, in turn, help us pay you when your music gets played – more so than ever before.

Hideki Natsumura, Global Head of KUVO at Pioneer DJ says, "We’re excited about this project. We were happy to know that the KUVO platform, which was originally planned for DJs to promote what tracks they play in clubs, and for clubbers around the world to discover new tracks, may also contribute to the community in a different way than we planned."

Getting the facts right 

KUVO is a networking device that plugs directly into Pioneer DJ’s CDJs and Nexus DJ mixer via a Local Area Network (LAN). It captures only selected metadata fields from the ID3 tags of any digital music file that is played by a DJ. This information is then sent to a Pioneer DJ cloud. 

Punters can then see what tracks are playing via a KUVO smartphone app. However most importantly, a DJ can also decide which tracks in their set they wish to keep private and which tracks they choose to reveal and make ‘public’.

For APRA AMCOS and any other performing right organisation (PRO) that decides to use KUVO, all music played via KUVO is reported back to the PRO - strictly for the purpose of distributing royalties (i.e. payments) to the rightful copyright owners.

Nightclubs themselves can use KUVO to promote their events and harness the power of social networking to market their brand. Both clubs and DJs can also create a profile on the KUVO website and send playlists to fans who can follow their favourites. 

KUVO was recently premiered to the dance music community in Australia at the Electronic Music Conference held in Sydney. We spoke to some of the delegates at EMC to find out their top five questions about KUVO.

Q: Is the purpose of KUVO to discover if songs have been illegally downloaded?

Fact: No.

APRA AMCOS has worked closely with Pioneer DJ to specifically capture only the metadata required for distribution purposes. This includes: song title, composer/writer, performer, record label and ISRC code. 

Furthermore, under our agreement Pioneer DJ will not reveal the DJ name associated with the music played or the club name.   

Q: What if I’ve got an unreleased track and I don’t want KUVO to know what songs I’m playing?

Fact: That’s totally fine – you don’t have to reveal any song to the public. The service is opt-in, so DJs wanting to keep particular songs secret can do so via Rekordbox. There’s an important distinction, however, between songs that are not being made ‘public’ and songs that are reported back to PROs via KUVO. While any hidden song will not be disclosed to the KUVO public, PROs receive all music plays - strictly for the purpose of distributing royalties back to the songwriters. Importantly, this information is never made available to the general public.

Q: Can other KUVO users download my whole set? I don’t want them to have my music for free.

Fact: No, KUVO users will be presented with your track list and the option to buy the song through whatever platform your music is available for sale.

Q: How does the KUVO system match the song exactly? What happens if KUVO gets it wrong?

Fact: KUVO technology is simply Direct Metadata Extraction (DME). It does not use any form of music recognition technology (MRT) and therefore does not rely on algorithms and ‘matching’ songs to digital fingerprints. In instances where metadata is incomplete, there’s every chance a song will not be identifiable. However this will be assessed as part of our overall trial. 

Another area that’s raised concerns has to do with manipulated metadata. In these cases there are already mechanisms available. Pioneer DJ’s engineering team has advised it is possible to identify where this may have occurred.

Question Five: Can I use KUVO if I don’t use Pioneer DJ equipment?

Fact: At this stage, for KUVO to read the metadata, music must be prepared in Pioneer's Rekordbox. However one of the key areas on which we have been working with Pioneer DJ is to make KUVO ‘technology neutral’. This would mean KUVO will work on any device.

KUVO is an exciting step forward for music reporting in clubs, venues and festivals. This technology promises a better and more accurate way of reporting music. For the first time KUVO will capture the music information being played, so we can pay you, our writers more accurately. If you have any questions about KUVO you can talk to one of our writer services reps or head to www.kuvo.com to see how the system works.

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