Since April, news leaked that the Instagram executive had plans to help content creators (including musicians) earn money from their live broadcasts on the platform. This week, Instagram made its first announcement about that proposal.
«To give fans another way to get involved and show their support, we introduced badges that viewers can buy during a live video,» they explained. «Badges will appear next to a person’s name throughout the broadcast. Fans who purchased badges on Live will be highlighted in the comments and unlock additional features, including placement on a list of creator credentials and access to a special heart emoji».
This feature will begin rolling out in June with «a small group of creators and companies». There is a form that you must complete to request early access, with plans to expand to the United States, Brazil, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Turkey, Spain and Mexico in the forthcoming months.
Livestreams through Instagram have become the main working tool for musicians and artists during quarantine.
The Verge spoke with Instagram CEO Justin Osofsky for some additional details. There will be three options: $0.99, $1.99 and $4.99, and during testing creators will get all the proceeds. But Instagram as this new feature succeeds will introduce a revenue-sharing system.
More news: They plan to introduce advertising on IGTV, Instagram’s long-form video section. Here too, creators will be able to share the revenue (they’ll get 55%) with around 200 creators involved in the trials starting next week.
In the interview on The Verge he also refers to an expansion of the «Live Shopping» feature for Instagram live streams, to help more people sell their products, and open his «Brand Collabs Manager» to all content creators on Instagram in the United States. These are all welcome moves, even from the musicians’ perspective.
The broader picture is the evolution of Instagram as a music platform.
Facebook’s Spark AR Studio tool will now also allow people to create augmented reality (VR) filters for Instagram that are responsive to music.
«To do this, you can import and use your own legally licensed music files, or you can let people choose a song they like from the thousands of free tracks in the Instagram music library,» Facebook explained on his blog, with some instructions to get people started using the new feature.