Tech

While the US Government debates banning TikTok, the company has done this.

The US Government is moving swiftly toward passing a bill that would ban TikTok in the country unless parent company ByteDance sells it. Given that 170 million people in America have the app, this is a big deal. China is also quite upset. The vote is today (March 13).

UPDATE: It passed in the House.

Meanwhile, ByteDance has acquired a series of music patents in the US. Researchers have developed some kind of AI model that’s been trained on 257,000 hours of songs.

The tech, created by ByteDance’s Speech, Audio & Music Intelligence (SAMI) team, is all about “conducting cutting-edge machine learning research and development in music understanding and generation” for “transfer [of] advanced technologies to ByteDance products.” Translation: Creating AI that can produce music and respond to musical context.

There’s a big emphasis on getting AI to recognize song structure and the subsets within a song to create something coherent and pleasant. They’re also working on something described as a “modular automatic music production server.” What’s that? “I quote from one of the patents:

“Automated music production based on artificial intelligence is an emerging technology with significant potential. Research has been conducted into training AI systems, such as neural networks, to compose original music based on a limited number of input parameters.”

Okay, so what? Don’t forget that ByteDance and TikTok are current at war with Universal Music Group over the licensing of music for use in TikTok videos. By having its on AI music generation compatibility, real music by real humans could be crowded out of the TikTok ecosystem, reducing royalty payments.

Who had that on their bingo card?

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

Alan Cross has 38291 posts and counting. See all posts by Alan Cross

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