(AllHipHop News) News broke earlier this week that lyrics website Rap Genius was one of 50 sites issued a takedown notice by the National Music Publishers Association. The NMPA claimed that RG and others were illegally publishing copyrighted songs. In the wake of that situation, Rap Genius has announced its first licensing deal with Sony/ATV Music Publishing according to Billboard.
The deal, which a spokesman claims was finalized earlier this year, provides the legal cover for RG to keep lyrics from Sony/ATV owned music on their website. Even though Sony/ATV is the largest music publisher in the world, that still requires Rap Genius to strike deals with other publishers for the remaining lyrics posted on the site.
"I am hopeful it is a first step toward becoming a fully licensed site," said NMPA president David Israelite.
Rap Genius is said to be in talks with more major music publishers. Some of the top companies include Universal Music Publishing, Warner/Chappell Music and Bertelsmann.
Despite the take down notices and threats of legal action Israelite says his organization's goal is to work with the unlicensed lyric sites and not shut them down.
"I think this is going to lead to a good resolution with many of these sites becoming business partners with songwriters," said Israelite.