Meta is facing criticism from creators of short-form videos due to a glitch in its Music Revenue Sharing program. This program allows creators to earn a share of in-stream ad revenue from their Facebook Reels that feature licensed music. The glitch incorrectly informed creators of substantial pending payouts, forcing Meta to rectify the error.
As Fortune reports, some Facebook creators were mistakenly notified that they would receive tens of thousands of dollars from the program, an error caused by a glitch in Meta's system. Meta has since sent out a clarification, significantly reducing the payout amounts.
Meta introduced its Music Revenue Share program in July last year and only recently expanded it to Reels. As a result, many creators had no idea what they might earn from their Reels clips, which contributed to confusion surrounding the initial payment notifications.
Meta claims that the error affected only a small number of creators, who have now been informed of the mistake. As social media platforms compete to offer top incentives for creators, they are still refining their payment structures. This is particularly applicable to short-form video, where monetization is not as clear-cut as it is for longer content.
Monetizing short clips, typically about 30 seconds long, is complicated because pre- and mid-roll ads cannot be easily inserted. Unlike longer videos where ad viewership can be definitively attributed to a specific creator, short-form content requires a reevaluation of video monetization processes to ensure fair and consistent income.
No platform has yet perfected this process. Snapchat has faced creator backlash over its flawed Spotlight payments model, YouTube's Shorts monetization program has delivered subpar results for many, and TikTok lacks a solid revenue share process.
Meta's payment issue underlines the difficulties apps face in monetizing shorter video content. This is especially problematic given the significant increases in engagement driven by short-form content on nearly every app. Consequently, all platforms are eager for more exclusive short clips, but none have emerged as the best place to post for earning money from short-form content.
Meta's error could harm its prospects in this area, with the initial anger from creators possibly leaving a lasting negative impression. Meta must now work to regain their trust, and given the various other options available, this could be a more significant setback than it initially appears.