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Noah Berger / AP

Facebook and Universal Music have struck a multi-year licensing deal to let users across all Facebook media properties use recorded music and publishing catalogs for video across Facebook.

Why it matters: It's the first major music company to license its recorded music and publishing catalogs for video and other social experiences across Facebook, Instagram and Oculus. Until now, users couldn't upload videos with non-licensed music in them, making it harder for users to post their content and providing less exposure for artists whose songs are commonly used in user-generated videos.

  • In the future, Facebook says the two companies will experiment ways to introduce new music-based products to these Facebook platforms, as well as Messenger, in order to engage more users.
  • Facebook has been expanding its video efforts, primarily through its "Watch" feature, for which future music collaborations could be helpful.
  • Facebook is catching up to Chinese tech rivals that have been aggressively pursing music deals. Chinese internet giant Tencent recently swapped minority shares with Spotify and TaoTao, a rising Chinese tech company, recently bought viral lip-sync app Musical.ly.

Go deeper

Updated 2 hours ago - Technology

Twitter sues Texas AG Ken Paxton

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton at February's Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando, Florida. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Twitter on Monday filed a lawsuit against Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R), saying that his office launched an investigation into the social media giant because it banned former President Trump from its platform.

Driving the news: Twitter is seeking to halt an investigation launched by Paxton into moderation practices by Big Tech firms including Twitter for what he called "the seemingly coordinated de-platforming of the President," days after they banned him following the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection.

6 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Senate retirements could attract GOP troublemakers

Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.). Photo: Jim Lo Scalzo/EPA/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Sen. Roy Blunt's retirement highlights the twin challenge facing Senate Republicans: finding good replacement candidates and avoiding a pathway for potential troublemakers to join their ranks.

Why it matters: While the midterm elections are supposed to be a boon to the party out of power, the recent run of retirements — which may not be over — is upending that assumption for the GOP in 2022.

Congressional diversity growing - slowly

Data: Brookings Institution and Pew Research Center; Note: No data on Native Americans in Congress before the 107th Congress; Chart: Danielle Alberti/Axios

The number of non-white senators and House members in the 535-seat Congress has been growing steadily in the past several decades — but representation largely lags behind the overall U.S. population.

Why it matters: Non-whites find it harder to break into the power system because of structural barriers such as the need to quit a job to campaign full time for office, as Axios reported in its latest Hard Truths Deep Dive.