The importance of music streaming in the music market grows continuously. For this reason, AKM and austro mechana are taking the next step with NEON to optimise the enforcement of their members’ copyrights in the field of online music.
“Our goal was to ensure that the online uses of our members’ works were no longer licensed only for their own country, but internationally (multi-territorial licensing). Due to the expected multiplication of the data volumes to be processed for this purpose, it was essential to develop a new software tool that would largely automate the previously manual processes”
NEON is a further development of the previously used license format tool also developed by RUBICON. With the help of NEON, usage reports from 47 countries are now billed – and this with a massive increase in data volume due to the changed consumer behaviour of music listeners, in which music streaming increasingly pushes the CD and even music downloads into the background. The approximately 11 billion data lines produced each year are processed in a shorter time and with better quality. “We expect an annual increase in data volumes of 20%. Due to this fact, the focus of NEON’s conception was clearly on scalability, but also on automation and outstanding usability,” explains Dr. Christian Kenngott, project manager at RUBICON.
How does NEON work?NEON collects and processes the usage data reported by music service providers such as Spotify, Apple, Google, Youtube, Amazon, Deezer & Co. This is predominantly automated, starting with the plausibility check and data import through to the application of the tariffs agreed between the contractual partners. This is followed by the assignment of the usage data to the AKM works catalogue and the invoicing as well as the preparation of the accounting. Finally, the determined data is transferred to the system in which the royalties are invoiced and paid out to the musicians.
Automated title matchingThe heart of the new solution is a title matching component designed by RUBICON, which assigns the song titles used to the authors from the AKM catalogue of works. The assignment is largely automated, taking into account Title IDs, ISRCs, ISWCs or by means of titles and performers using advanced text matching algorithms. Only uses to which no unambiguous work information can be automatically assigned are optionally checked by hand. Each manual assignment improves the rate of automatic assignments for future processing. With the introduction of NEON, the accuracy of title matching could be increased to 75%. License fees can be claimed for all clearly assigned songs. The respective provider receives an invoice for these and the artists can receive the money to which they are entitled.
NEON can handle different tariffs, license shares and currencies for the individual countries. Subsequent charges can be made at any time. In addition, the current status of licensing processes can be conveniently checked at any time. Due to the large amount of data, these often run over a period of several days. Special requirements of the providers can be considered, especially the formats used for usage reports and invoicing.
Further, NEON has a comprehensive reporting module based on Kibana, which makes it possible to query any statistics such as licensed titles per country or provider quickly and present them in a visually appealing way.
Agile development in close cooperationNEON was developed in an agile approach in short feedback cycles. "An important success factor was the close and interdisciplinary cooperation with the customer," says Dr. Christian Kenngott of RUBICON.
"We are very satisfied with the result. After a development phase lasting nine months, we were able to start operation on schedule. Thanks to NEON, we can now offer our members even better service and they get their money faster."
AKM and austromechana represent the copyrights of composers, music lyricists and music publishers in Austria and collect royalties in trust for their members.
- Faster processing of online usage reports
- Higher hit accuracy when assigning uses to authors
- Multi-territorial licensing
- More precise and faster payment of royalties
Facts & Figures
- Processing of 11 billion data rows per year
- 20% increase in data volume per year
- Matching rate of 75% (continuous improvement through self-learning system)
- 10% revenue increase in 2018 due to cross-border licensing
- ASP .NET Core
- Lucene .NET
- Kibana / Elasticsearch