Getty Images Music and SoundCloud have partnered to allow users of the cloud-based audio storage and streaming system to easily license their creations for commercial use. In effect SoundCloud's 20 million members can now easily add a "license" button to their uploaded content, which automatically hands matters over from SoundCloud to Getty's licensing systems.
While Getty will make a fee from each license purchase, SoundCloud will take nothing. But it will get branded collection of sounds at Getty Images Music, which boosts the company's visibility. The intention of the new "sync" licensing system is to make it super-easy for music creators to sell their music for profit, but content owners only get 35% of the income, and Getty keeps the remaining 65%—an inversion of the 70%/30% split that's now common thanks to Apple and iTunes.
Getty has been moving to embrace 21st Century sharing cultures, and has made its own moves to enable easy embedding of its own image content in commercial websites with its Connect system. Getty Images itself has recently been purchased by the Carlyle Group.