Soon-To-Launch Social Media Platform Hangout FM Signs Deal with SOCAN

The music platform, where users can curate "hangouts" with a virtual DJ booth, has signed with the Canadian rights management company to help bring the platform to Canada and ensure artists receive royalties.

Soon-To-Launch Social Media Platform Hangout FM Signs Deal with SOCAN

American music social media platform Hangout FM has signed a deal with the Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada (SOCAN), opening doors for artists on their platform to Canadian users. The deal aims to distribute performance royalties to Canadian creators from Canadian listeners on the platform.

Launching in summer 2024, the new platform from Turntable Lab is a virtual music catalog where users can curate “Hangouts” with a virtual DJ booth. Hangout FM also will let users engage with artists and watch live shows and DJ sets from a roster of artists.

“It's important for us to do right by artists, labels, publishers, and all music rights-holders, so we've been working hard to get all of our agreements in place before the official launch,” says Hangout FM founder and CEO Joseph Perla in an email to Billboard Canada.


With SOCAN, Turntable Lab also secured a blanket license with the Mechanical Licensing Collective (MLC). That will allow them to collect and distribute digital audio mechanical royalties for songs played in Hangout rooms.

“To have two of the largest rights organizations in the U.S. and Canada in place is a key starting point, and we're looking forward to announcing additional licensing agreements with rights holders around the globe,” said Perla.

The conversation around royalties for artists from streaming has been a big conversation this past year. Spotify received backlash in early November over their updated payment model, in which tracks gaining less than 1,000 streams within 12 months don’t receive royalties.

While Hangout FM doesn’t follow the traditional structure of streaming music, royalties for their artists play a huge role in this latest deal. Within Canada, Perla says that the app's royalties percentage will be dictated by both SOCAN and the MLC.

“It will be a percentage governed by SOCAN's existing deals with its artists and The MLC's statutory rates,” says Perla.


This news comes with the MLC announcing its Supplement Matching Network, consisting of five companies assisting the MLC in continuing to up its match rate, which currently sits at 90 per cent.

In a press release, SOCAN’s VP of Royalty Collection, Kit Wheeler, says the licensing agreement will benefit both subscribers and DJs, “providing them with creative freedom to use the music they desire, while ensuring fair compensation for the incredible work of SOCAN music creators and publishers.”

Artists that will be accessible on the platform or part of Hangout FM’s have yet to be announced. Alongside digital licensing partner Merlin, negotiations are still ongoing.

Users can join a Hangout FMs waitlist here.

Charlotte Day Wilson
Emily Lipson

Charlotte Day Wilson


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