Snapchat has been having some fun with music on the app. Last month, they helped Ed Sheeran debut 30-seconds of his new song "Shape Of You" via a lens, where users could don blue sunglasses and dance amid fictional disco lights.
But not everyone is playing along. Kate Nash, an English singer-songwriter perhaps best known for the song "Foundations," accused Snapchat of stealing the rights to that exact song. She broadcasted her accusation on Twitter Friday, posting a video of her using the lens:
Hi @Snapchat Do you pay ppl for the use of their work? Been off a record label now for 5 years. Is this legal? I should be paid PLS RETWEET pic.twitter.com/9qq9iKltFG
— Kate Nash (@katenash) February 17, 2017
"Hi, Snapchat. It’s Kate Nash. I can barely hear myself over my own song. But where’s my paycheck?" Nash said in the video.
The song sounds like "Foundations," though it’s only a beat — no lyrics. We tried using Shazam to identify the song, but the app couldn’t recognize it.
Nash also shared a longer more-detailed accusation on Instagram:
"Snapchat screws over independent artists," Nash wrote.
As Mashable reported, Snapchat has always had a close relationship with musicians and has been further prioritizing that effort this year.
"Sometimes there can be challenges as a platform grows, but [at Snapchat], they’re all passionate music fans, and have the interest of advancing the artist," Chris Mortimer, head of digital marketing at Interscope Records, said in an interview last month.
Snapchat does not disclose terms of its deals, but we learned that Snapchat typically pays artists to license songs, and that the company also typically works with each partner to make sure any music used in a lens or in a promo video is properly licensed.
As to where Nash’s paycheck is? Perhaps it’s in the mail. The song "Foundations" was released by Fiction records, which is under Universal Music Group.
UMG did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Snapchat is looking into it.