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Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify

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GUEST 30 May 23 - 07:45 PM
Joe Offer 30 May 23 - 08:07 PM
GUEST,Rossey 30 May 23 - 08:27 PM
Joe Offer 30 May 23 - 09:03 PM
GUEST,Rossey 30 May 23 - 10:34 PM
GUEST,Rossey 30 May 23 - 10:46 PM
GerryM 31 May 23 - 05:18 AM
MaJoC the Filk 31 May 23 - 05:52 AM
Sandra in Sydney 31 May 23 - 06:17 AM
GUEST 31 May 23 - 06:55 AM
GUEST,Rossey 31 May 23 - 09:45 AM
Stanron 31 May 23 - 10:26 AM
MaJoC the Filk 31 May 23 - 01:01 PM
GUEST 31 May 23 - 01:27 PM
Stanron 31 May 23 - 01:52 PM
GUEST,Howard Jones 01 Jun 23 - 04:07 AM
GUEST,Rossey 01 Jun 23 - 06:29 AM
GUEST,Howard Jones 01 Jun 23 - 10:28 AM
GUEST,Rossey 01 Jun 23 - 10:59 AM
Howard Jones 02 Jun 23 - 05:31 AM
GUEST,Rossey 02 Jun 23 - 05:59 AM
Howard Jones 02 Jun 23 - 06:47 AM
MaJoC the Filk 02 Jun 23 - 07:12 AM
GUEST 02 Jun 23 - 08:52 AM
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Subject: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: GUEST
Date: 30 May 23 - 07:45 PM

Does anyone know why irrespective of metatag data, Spotify are heading their search pages on Google 'song and lyrics by' no matter who wrote the song?   They are implying that millions of songs have been written by the performers, not the actual songwriters behind them.

This has led to all sorts of misinformation, loss of credit to real writers and makes it historically wrong. We seem to be living in a world of alternate facts. Does anyone know why this AI formula appears? I have tried to bring it up with song organisations, but all anyone is currently interested in is the streaming rates. It is short sighted.

I can't understand why the formula for search pages on songs can't say 'recorded or performed by'? This may not seem an issue, but even on Mudcat I have seen people reproducing (C) lyrics, thinking that the artist who recorded it aligns with the person who wrote it.   Is it a Google created problem or does the fault lie with Spotify?   Similarly Google often use 'Song By', and TikTok - 'Created by'.   All seem to be deliberately blurring the issue of writer's rights and attribution. Anyway, please all out there be wary of assuming that these credits are factual when relating them to song composition.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: Joe Offer
Date: 30 May 23 - 08:07 PM

Hi, Guest -
Although you are permitted to post anonymously at Mudcat, it really helps the community if you use a name when posting. Here at Mudcat, we try really hard to ensure that songs are attributed correctly. Sometimes we fail or fall into disputed areas, but at least we try.

There must be some sort of songwriters' associations in most countries. Those are the people who have the power to enforce proper attribution, because it is directly in their interest.

-Joe Offer, Music Editor, The Mudcat Cafe-


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: GUEST,Rossey
Date: 30 May 23 - 08:27 PM

That was accidentally posted without my name Joe, I didn't mean it to be anon. I meant that people on here may be caught out by the way songs are now being headed on search pages... and I was wondering why these headings are being created? Is there something that the AI software picks out, and can it be altered? Is it Spotify, or is it Google? I have had many people make assumptions on the origins of songs based on the use of 'Song and Lyrics' by.. 'Song By'. Try it with just about any Spotify artist on Google and you'll see.. millions of songs are being headed on search pages as being written by the artists who perform them, when quite often the two are completely different beasts. So people on here need to be aware not to trust the attributions of Spotify. Even where they have metadata on their pages that too can be wrong. Digital distributors make huge numbers of errors.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: Joe Offer
Date: 30 May 23 - 09:03 PM

I agree, Rossey. It really bugs me when songs are not attributed to the songwriter, and I do my best to ensure that songs are properly attributed at Mudcat. I know the song you're most concerned about is Dark Island, which has at least one version written by your father. I respect your claim on the song, but I still don't know fully where to place the attribution. Still and all, it's a lovely song about a beautiful place on earth, and I want to sing the song. But I'm not convinced about the attribution.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: GUEST,Rossey
Date: 30 May 23 - 10:34 PM

No I was not concerned too much about that one, versions are now being correctly credited when they use my fathers lyrics - where they know it is being used. They have to know first. it is now registered as Words Stewart Ross, Music Maclachlan for that version - where those words are known to be used. So your database is fine. If you would like me to e-mail proof that my father wrote it - I can do so.   I am concerned about the other Scottish, Country and other songs he wrote the whole of recorded by artists like Daniel O' Donnell, and the use of song and lyrics by, song by - no matter who wrote it. This is also because I have become a champion of getting to the bottom of song stories - as you will find from the many times I have researched queries on here.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: GUEST,Rossey
Date: 30 May 23 - 10:46 PM

So Joe We went off topic. I am just wanting know what the AI issue is, over Spotify using Song and Lyrics by on Google headings, and is it Google or Spotify who are at fault? What is the technical reason for it? I have a connection to songwriters like Mike Batt, and despite having million sellers, it hacks him off to see the artist credited as having written the song on these headings. Nobody has ever explained how or why it appears on pages.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: GerryM
Date: 31 May 23 - 05:18 AM

I could be wrong here, but I don't think it's Google, I think they just repeat whatever the websites say. And it's certainly not just Spotify, lots of other websites say X by Y when what they should say is X recorded by Y. And unless you have a really superior collection of friends and acquaintances, Rossey, I bet that some of them will from time to time refer to a song by Y when they mean a song recorded by Y. I put it down to laziness (not yours, but that of the websites and the fans).


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: MaJoC the Filk
Date: 31 May 23 - 05:52 AM

> refer to a song by Y when they mean a song recorded by Y

An unintended side-effect of the singer-songwriter phenomenon, perhaps?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 31 May 23 - 06:17 AM

Speaking of sources - sometime back I was looking for the words of one of the greatest hits of our biggest country star. I also knew who wrote it, yet the first lyrics site I found said the singer did!

There was a wonderful mondegreen in it, & having nothing better to do, I checked the other sites & found the same mondegreen in every set of lyrics with all credited to the singer, on 20+ other sites.

So of course, as "Google" said the singer wrote the song, it must be true ...

An Australian expression was translated as an American word because the first person to post the lyrics obviously didn't believe it. Ron Fairborn's lyrics for Slim Dusty's hit G'Day, G'day - "cork hats" becomes "polecats"
Cork hats are hats with corks hanging off the brim to discourage flies. Alleged to have been worn in fly-infested areas back in the olden days, & now only seen in souvenir shops & on tourist heads.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: GUEST
Date: 31 May 23 - 06:55 AM

Something similar happens here on the 'Cat: see here
    As I said on the "Holloway" thread: I've been watching this, hoping for proper attribution for these monologues. But I'm not going to make any changes until I see evidence that supplies and proves the name of the author. Monologue John is very familiar with the work of Marriott Edgar, and most of the posts in this thread are the work of Monologue John. I'll take his word until somebody provides evidence to the contrary.
    In other words, don't get your knickers in a knot. Holloway died in 1982 and Edgar died in 1951. They can wait.
    We've long had a policy of not making corrections until we get them from a source we can document. And then we make full corrections - we don't do it piecemeal.

    -Joe Offer, Mudcat Music Editor-


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: GUEST,Rossey
Date: 31 May 23 - 09:45 AM

This is what I mean, something in the formula that leads a search page. With some songs they can take it, due to being so well known that they have Wiki pages and information to balance out the spurious. Lesser songs the misinformation gets taken in as fact. That affects covers. This is a Mike Batt MOR million selling song.. just used as an example yet the formula leads with:

                                                         
Bright Eyes - song and lyrics by Art Garfunkel

Spotify
https://open.spotify.com › track
Listen to Bright Eyes on Spotify. Art Garfunkel · Song · 1979.

When it says lyrics by.. that clearly infers Art Garfunkel wrote the lyrics, when of course he is only the recording artist for the song. Mike Batt wrote the lyrics and whole song.

In the case of his songs written by Mike and recorded by the performer Katie Meluah, people on youtube often credit her thinking she wrote all the songs she sang - whereas many are only recorded by her.   It's like a karaoke styling.   This applies to millions of songs of all genres on Spotify.   I am scratching my head wondering why the AI is doing this, and why Google, Spotify, Tik Tok, etc. can't use Performed, or Recorded By in their headings? It's creating a virtual world of 'alternate facts'.

As for mondegreens Sandra, lyric sites are appalling for repeating AI pigeon English versions, once they find their way onto the Internet, they go viral - picked up by autobots. Now the likes of Youtube has AI created captions on videos, leading to further lyrical mangling of many songs.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: Stanron
Date: 31 May 23 - 10:26 AM

So we can now infer that AI actually stands for Artificial Incompetence.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: MaJoC the Filk
Date: 31 May 23 - 01:01 PM

.... as I've been styling it for Simply Ages. I lay dibs on the expression, but hereby dedicate it to the Public Good.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: GUEST
Date: 31 May 23 - 01:27 PM

Ha! I shall use that Artificial Incompetence one from now on.   My kilt wearing accordion playing brother shared the same name as a famous dead jazz sax player, and Google headings relating to him were often mixed in with the other one, despite the glaring differences. AI still lacks some human aspects of common sense.   

I just don't understand why search headings can't say 'recorded by'.. to instantly clarify that it's just the artist who recorded the song - and doesn't relate to the writing of the song?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: Stanron
Date: 31 May 23 - 01:52 PM

@ MJC the F

Sorry if I've just done what we are all accusing AI of doing. AI will probably give the origin of it's corrected name to someone else anyway.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: GUEST,Howard Jones
Date: 01 Jun 23 - 04:07 AM

Whilst I agree that misattribtion is a problem, I'm not sure how much big players are at fault. The bigger music publishers have bots crawling the internet for any potential infringement of copyright and I'm sure they are on top of it. Whilst Spotify can be criticised for the meagre payments to artists when a song is streamed, I'm sure they take care to stay on the right side of the law.

After seeing Guest, Rossey's post I googled "Bright Eyes". It came up as "song by Art Garfunkel", However to say a song is "by" someone can mean either the performer or the songwriter. Admittedly this may sometimes cause confusion, but both are correct and in widespread use, and I don't think Google can be criticised for saying it is "by Art Garfunkel".

Google also provides the full lyrics, and there Mike Batt is identified as the writer together with full copyright information.

When I looked for the song on Spotify I found a "credits" link, which identified Art Garfunkel as the artist and Mike Batt as the writer.

Of course this is only one example, but it is one chosen by the OP and both Google and Spotify seem to have attributed it correctly.

There is a much bigger problem with lyrics sites, which are full of inaccuracies and mondegreens, and careless attributions.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: GUEST,Rossey
Date: 01 Jun 23 - 06:29 AM

I just used it a famous song as an example as there is enough out there for people to know who wrote it and how obvious it is that Art didn't write it, but was only the recording artist. Its not like that with minor songs where the name of the writer is not so obvious.   I think you are getting confused... for some reason Spotify use on the Google led search pages "as song and lyrics by".. Tik Tok use 'Created By.. ', when the artist did not 'create' the song. I cut and pasted a Spotify one as an example.. it applies to millions of songs. Of course this is irrespective of the metatag data on their actual site. Lesser known songs don't have that wealth of information to balance out the minsinformation. Here I cut and paste after typing in Bright Eyes, Art Garfunkel Spotify.. and it came up with

Bright Eyes - song and lyrics by Art Garfunkel

Spotify
https://open.spotify.com › track
Bright Eyes. Art Garfunkel. 19793:58.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: GUEST,Howard Jones
Date: 01 Jun 23 - 10:28 AM

I hadn't included "spotify" in my search, but I now see what you mean. I then searched for some tracks by my own band, and these too we "song and lyrics by" even though they were instrumentals - not songs - and had no lyrics.

It is obviously a label which Spotify seem to have applied when they really mean "recorded by". This is potentially misleading. I suspect most people will be searching for the artist rather than the songwriter, so it would make more sense and be more helpful if they said this.

Have you offered any feedback to Spotify?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: GUEST,Rossey
Date: 01 Jun 23 - 10:59 AM

Thanks Howard, I can't find any human being. I tried Twitter and asking the CEO of Spotify.. but no response.   It is just part of a pattern which demotes the value of writers and confuses the history of songs. I wish Mudcat could show images, so I could show you how my father's songs show up when I do any search, not just using Spotify.   High up the rankings on my search pages comes this By, Song and Lyrics by etc with the artist prominent as if they wrote it. I have seen people who aren't quite as with it on the song front as you, take it at face value because of the ambiguity. It could easily be sorted by something in the AI programming just saying "Recorded", or "Performed" By... I just wondered why it is formulated in the current way - and how it can be altered?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: Howard Jones
Date: 02 Jun 23 - 05:31 AM

It is difficult to understand why they use those words when that is clearly not the information provided, and when some tracks don't even have lyrics. It is misleading, and potentially confusing.

Spotify has a contact page for feedback.

I wonder if you might get a better response if you present this as something which is confusing for their customers trying to search for songs, rather than as a grievance on behalf of songwriters (whom I suspect they may not much care about)


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: GUEST,Rossey
Date: 02 Jun 23 - 05:59 AM

Thanks Howard. I was venting because one of these Internet DJ's played a song my father wrote, and one that I now own, saying that the recording artist wrote it.   This has happened more than once. Also I found on Facebook someone replying to a query on another song my father wrote, saying similar - taking that use of 'song and lyrics by' at face value. Whole search pages show it.. multiple recording versions of the same song.. with that styling used on Google pages effectively crediting the performer as having written the song. I use a laptop, so I am not sure whether we all see the same thing, but there are whole search pages of results that have AI doctored misleading information quite prominently displayed.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: Howard Jones
Date: 02 Jun 23 - 06:47 AM

I can understand your frustration, but the internet is now such a mine of misinformation that really nothing can be trusted. It probably doesn't help that most people are probably not very interested who wrote a song, so there isn't much pressure to get it right. Being realistic, I doubt there is much that can be done, unless an actual copyright infringement occurs.

If a DJ is properly licenced then the copyright information for the tracks they play should mean that you receive the appropriate royalties. However that is not the same as the songwriter being properly recognised and credited.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: MaJoC the Filk
Date: 02 Jun 23 - 07:12 AM

> whole search pages of results that have AI doctored misleading
> information

No need to blame Artificial Incompetence: the natural article is quite sufficient. Hanlon's Razor predates ChatGPT (the current fad) by decades.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Use of Song and Lyrics by - Spotify
From: GUEST
Date: 02 Jun 23 - 08:52 AM

that is the purpose of PRS TO ENSURE THAT SONGWRITERS GET THEIR FINANCIAL DUES


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