Rock Your Instagram Game How To Use Copyrighted Music Legally

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Do you love adding music to your Instagram posts but are constantly worried about violating copyright laws? You are not alone. This is a very common concern among Instagram users, and it can be overwhelming to try and navigate the legalities of using music in your posts. But don’t worry, in this article, we will show you how to use copyrighted music on Instagram legally.

By reading this article, you can expect to learn the proper ways to use copyrighted music on your Instagram posts without violating any laws. With the rise of social media and the popularity of Instagram, it has become essential to know how to use music on this platform while avoiding any legal troubles. Our aim is to provide you with simple, easy-to-understand steps that will help you add your favorite music to your Instagram posts while staying within the legal boundaries.

The good news is that with careful planning and following the right steps, it is completely possible to use copyrighted music on Instagram without getting in trouble. In this article, we will provide you with a detailed guide on how to legally use copyrighted music on Instagram. The steps we will lay out have been tried and tested, and we can assure you that they work. So get ready to enhance your Instagram game by using your favorite music legally!

Understanding Copyright Law for Music on Instagram

In today’s digital age, social media has become a platform for creators to showcase their talent, connect with people around the world, and earn a living. Instagram is one such popular social media platform that allows individuals and businesses to share photos, videos, and music. However, the use of music on Instagram comes with legal implications that can lead to copyright infringement. To use copyrighted music on Instagram legally, it is essential to understand the copyright law for music on Instagram.

What is Copyright Law?

Copyright is a legal right granted to the creator of an original work. It offers protection to the creator’s original work, such as a book, song, video, or photograph, from being used or copied without permission. The copyright owner has exclusive rights to use, modify, distribute, and profit from their original work. These rights are protected by various copyright laws worldwide.

How does Copyright Law apply to Music on Instagram?

Music on Instagram comes in different forms, such as videos, stories, and reels. Using copyrighted music without permission or license is a violation of the copyright law. Instagram has a feature called the Instagram Music Library, which allows users to add music to their posts legally. The music library contains popular and licensed music that Instagram users can use without fear of legal repercussions.

The Pros and Cons of Using Copyrighted Music on Instagram

Using copyrighted music on Instagram can have both positive and negative effects. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons.

Pros Cons
-Attracts more viewers – Risk of copyright infringement
-Increases engagement -Possible legal action
-Makes posts more appealing -Negative impact on the creator’s reputation

How to Legally Use Copyrighted Music on Instagram

Now that we know the risks of using copyrighted music on Instagram let’s look at how to use it legally.

  1. Get permission from the copyright owner: Contact the copyright owner or their record label and request permission to use their music. If your request is granted, the copyright owner will provide you with a license agreement that outlines the terms and conditions of using the music.
  2. Use Royalty-free Music: Royalty-free music is music that can be used without paying a license fee for each use. There are various websites that sell royalty-free music, and Instagram has an extensive music library that offers royalty-free music.
  3. Use Music under Creative Commons License: Creative Commons licenses allow creators to share their work with others under certain conditions. Some Creative Commons licenses allow the use of music for non-commercial purposes.


In conclusion, it is crucial to understand copyright law for music on Instagram to avoid legal repercussions. Using copyrighted music without permission or license can have negative consequences on the creator’s reputation and lead to legal action. However, using royalty-free music, getting permission from the copyright owner, or using music under creative commons licenses are some ways to use copyrighted music on Instagram legally. By using these methods, creators can enhance their posts, increase engagement, and attract more viewers without the risk of copyright infringement.

Properly Licensing Music for Instagram Use

Instagram is a platform for creatives to showcase their work, with many of them using copyrighted music in their content. However, using copyrighted music without due permission can lead to legal trouble. In order to use copyrighted music on Instagram legally, you need to obtain a license from the appropriate organization or licensing entity. Below are some ways to properly license music for Instagram use:

1. Identify the Copyright Owner

Before licensing any music, you need to identify the owner of the copyright. This can be the artist, the record label, or any other entity that holds the rights to the music. You can usually find this information on the music’s official website or by contacting the artist or record label directly.

2. Choose the Right License Type

Once you have identified the copyright owner, you need to choose the right license type for your use. There are several types of licenses that are commonly used for Instagram content, including:

  • Sync License: This allows you to synchronize the music with your video or image content.
  • Mechanical License: This allows you to use the music as a cover or sample in your Instagram content.
  • Public Performance License: This allows you to play the music in public, such as in a live stream or at an event.
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Choosing the right license type depends on how you plan to use the music in your content. It’s important to research and understand the terms and conditions of each license to avoid any legal issues.

3. Determine the Cost of the License

Obtaining a license for copyrighted music can come with a fee, which varies depending on the license type and the extent of your use. Some organizations charge a flat fee for the license, while others charge a percentage of your revenue or viewership. It’s important to factor in the cost of the license when budgeting for your Instagram content.

4. Choose the Right Licensing Entity

There are several organizations that offer music licensing for Instagram content, including:

  • ASCAP: The American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers represents over 740,000 songwriters and publishers.
  • SESAC: The Society of European Stage Authors and Composers is a performing rights organization that represents over 30,000 songwriters and publishers.
  • BMI: Broadcast Music Inc. represents over 1.1 million songwriters and composers.

Choosing the right licensing entity can depend on the specific music you want to license, as well as your budget and needs. Research each organization to determine their fees, services, and overall reputation.

5. Keep Proper Records

Once you have properly licensed the music for your Instagram content, it’s important to keep proper records of the licensing agreements and any fees paid. This will help you to stay organized and avoid any legal issues in the future.

Licensing Entity Pros Cons
  • Represents a large number of songwriters and publishers
  • Offers a variety of licensing options
  • Provides tools for tracking your music use
  • Can be expensive for smaller budgets
  • Requires a membership fee to use their services
  • May not offer licenses for all types of music
  • Represents a large number of songwriters and publishers
  • Offers a variety of licensing options
  • Provides detailed reporting for your music use
  • Can be expensive for smaller budgets
  • Does not offer mechanical licenses
  • Requires a membership fee to use their services
  • Represents a large number of songwriters and composers
  • Offers a variety of licensing options
  • Provides tools for tracking your music use
  • Can be expensive for smaller budgets
  • Some artists are not represented by BMI
  • Requires a membership fee to use their services

Properly licensing music for Instagram use can be a complex process, but it’s essential in order to avoid legal issues and protect your content. By identifying the copyright owner, choosing the right license type, determining the cost of the license, choosing the right licensing entity, and keeping proper records, you can ensure that your Instagram content meets all legal requirements.

Tips for Finding Royalty-Free Music on Instagram

Instagram’s music features have become so popular that they have played a significant role in increasing the popularity of Instagram Stories. Over the years, the platform has introduced different music-related features, including a music library, which allows users to select from a vast collection of tracks to add to their posts, and music stickers, which lets you customize your story with a track to match your mood or a particular event. However, using copyrighted music without permission can result in content being flagged, taken down, or even legal action. So below are some tips for finding royalty-free music on Instagram legally.

Understand Royalty-Free Music

Royalty-Free Music is a type of music licensing that enables individuals, businesses, or organizations to use a track indefinitely without having to pay a royalty fee to the artist, composer, or record label. This type of music has become increasingly popular with the proliferation of online content creation because it allows content creators to use music for their videos or other forms of digital media without infringing on anyone’s copyright. However, it is essential to note that royalty-free music is not the same as music that is in the public domain. Public domain music is music whose copyright has expired, and currently, no one owns rights to the composition. In contrast, royalty-free music is still copyrighted by the owner or composer, but they have allowed for its use without the need for future payments, as long as it abides by the terms of the music’s Creative Commons License, Royalty-Free License, or Copyright.

Use Instagram’s Built-in Music Library

Instagram has a vast library of music that contains tens of thousands of songs of different genres from indie music to popular commercial tracks. This feature is accessible via the “Add Music” sticker in Instagram’s Story or Reels mode. To find the music, you can either scroll through the general “Popular” list, search for the song or artist’s name, browse a selection of recommended tracks or use the Music Genre filters. The best part of this feature is that these tracks have been pre-licensed for use, which means, as long as your post isn’t offensive, your content won’t violate the copyright guidelines, and you won’t have to worry about getting a takedown notice from Instagram or a copyright owner.

Explore Third-Party Music Libraries and Services

Other than Instagram’s built-in music library, there are various third-party platforms that offer affordable and quality royalty-free music that content creators can use to enhance their stories. These libraries contain tracks of all genres following the respective licenses, enabling the use of the music for commercial and non-commercial purposes. Some of the most popular platforms offering a variety of license terms include:

  1. A platform that provides royalties-free audio effects, sound effects, and music clips with affordable subscription plans at different resolutions.
  2. A platform containing over a million audio clips of different genres, including music loops, sound effects, and audio sample packs. The music is available on different licenses ranging from standard to extended.
  3. This is a massive library with thousands of audio tracks that have been hand-reviewed by professionals. The music can be licensed individually or in a bundle.

Moreover, content creators can also use online tools like HAAWK or TuneCore that allow artists to directly license their music to content creators for use on platforms like Instagram.

License Directly with Artists or Record Labels

One of the best ways for digital creators to get high-quality music legally is by licensing music directly from artists or record labels. This approach allows the creators to obtain music that fits their needs while also supporting the artist directly. This licensing model provides a win-win situation for both parties as the artist gets exposure and royalties, while the content creator uses the music without facing any legal repercussions. licensed music is often found on the artist’s or label’s website or through online sources.

Table: Comparison of Benefits and Drawbacks for Different Music Licensing Options

Licensing Options Benefits Drawbacks
Instagram Music Library
  • Quick and Accessible
  • Built-in License
  • Vast Music Collection
  • Integrated with Instagram’s Story and Reels Mode
  • May not have the song you need
  • Music Limited to Instagram Only
  • Restricted Customization
Third-Party Platforms
  • Wide Genre Choices
  • Moderate Pricing
  • Allows commercial and non-commercial uses
  • High-quality audio
  • Limited Customization
  • Can be Expensive if Choosing a Complicated License
Direct Licensing with Artists or Record Labels
  • Exposure for Local or Indie Artists
  • Ability to build relationships with artists
  • Customizable License
  • Ability to use the music on different platforms
  • No pre-licensed tracks
  • More Time-Consuming
  • May be Expensive
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Regardless of the licensing option chosen, it is essential to ensure that the music is quality, fits the footage. Finally, take into consideration the tone, mood, and vibe of the music before placing it on the post, ensuring that it will complement the visuals and not distract from the story being told.

The Consequences of Using Copyrighted Music Illegally on Instagram

Using copyrighted music on Instagram without the proper license or permission from the owner can lead to serious legal consequences. In this section, we will explore the various consequences of using copyrighted music illegally on Instagram and how to avoid them.

Lawsuits and Legal Action

One of the most common consequences of using copyrighted music illegally is legal action. If you use a copyrighted song, without obtaining a license or permission from the owner, you are infringing on their intellectual property rights. This can lead to lawsuits and legal action against you, including but not limited to:

– Cease and desist orders: This order requires you to immediately stop using the copyrighted music and remove it from your Instagram account.
– Fines and penalties: You could be ordered to pay a fine or penalty for infringing on the owner’s rights.
– Damages: If you use the copyrighted music for commercial purposes, the owner may be entitled to monetary damages for the unauthorized use of their work.

It’s important to note that even small businesses or individuals with a small following on Instagram can face legal action if they use copyrighted music illegally. In fact, several high-profile cases have made headlines in recent years, including a lawsuit by a photographer against a clothing company for unauthorized use of his copyrighted photo on Instagram.

Suspension or Closure of Instagram Account

Instagram has strict policies on the use of copyrighted materials. If you violate these policies, Instagram can suspend or even close your account. This means that you will lose all your followers, likes, and comments, and you won’t be able to create a new account using the same email or phone number.

To avoid suspension or closure of your Instagram account, make sure to only use music that you have the proper license or permission to use. You should also give credit to the owner of the music in your posts by tagging them and including a statement in the caption that the music is not your own.

Negative Impact on Brand Reputation

Using copyrighted music without permission can also have a negative impact on your brand reputation. Consumers are increasingly aware of copyright infringement and are less likely to support businesses or individuals who engage in such practices.

Moreover, if an artist or brand notices that their copyrighted work is being used without permission, they may call out the offender on social media, which can lead to bad publicity and damage to their brand reputation.


In conclusion, the consequences of using copyrighted music illegally on Instagram can be severe. Legal action, suspension or closure of your Instagram account, and damage to your brand reputation are all possible outcomes of using copyrighted music without permission. To avoid these consequences, make sure to obtain the proper license or permission from the owner of the music and give proper credit in your posts. It’s better to be safe than sorry when it comes to using copyrighted materials.

Pros Cons
Increased reach and engagement from using popular music Legal action, including fines, penalties, and damages
Creative expression through music in posts and stories Suspension or closure of Instagram account
Brand association with popular music and artists Negative impact on brand reputation
  1. Lawsuits and Legal Action
    • Cease and desist orders
    • Fines and penalties
    • Damages
  2. Suspension or Closure of Instagram Account
    • Strict policies on use of copyrighted material on Instagram
    • Risk of suspension or closure of account for copyright infringement
  3. Negative Impact on Brand Reputation
    • Consumers are increasingly aware of copyright infringement
    • Bad publicity and damage to brand reputation

Finally, it’s important to understand that even if you are using a small portion of a copyrighted song, you are still infringing on the owner’s rights. It’s always better to err on the side of caution and obtain a license or permission to use the music in your posts and stories.

By following these guidelines, you can avoid the negative consequences of using copyrighted music illegally on Instagram and create engaging content that respects the rights of the original creators.

Alternatives to Using Copyrighted Music on Instagram

As Instagram puts strict guidelines on their platform’s copyrighted music usage, many creators find themselves at a loss for how to include music in their content legally. Fortunately, there are several alternatives to adding copyrighted music that can help you create music-filled content that aligns with Instagram’s policies.

1. Create Original Music

One of the best ways to avoid copyright infringement on Instagram is by creating your own original music. Not only will this ensure a legal use of music, but it can also showcase your individual musical talents. Below are some tips to help you get started:

  • Use instruments or software to create beats and melodies.
  • Write original lyrics that add value to your content.
  • Collaborate with musicians to create a unique sound.
  • Record, mix, and master your music to produce high-quality audio.

Creating original music for your Instagram content can help you stand out from other users while also keeping your posts legal and policy-compliant.

2. Use Royalty-Free Music

Another alternative for adding music to your Instagram videos is to use royalty-free music. Royalty-free music is a type of music that can be licensed for use without the need to pay the original copyright holder repeatedly. While there are some one-off fees, it can save creators money in the long run compared to paying royalties for every use of copyrighted music.

Below are some popular sources of royalty-free music:

  • YouTube Audio Library
  • Pond5
  • AudioJungle
  • Premium Beat

Using royalty-free music can provide an extensive range of music options while avoiding copyright infringement issues.

3. Pay for Music Licenses

While paying for licenses to use copyrighted music can be expensive, it can ensure that the creator’s content is compliant with Instagram’s policies. Depending on the music, the creator could contact the artist or their representatives to purchase a license for use. Additionally, there are agencies that provide licenses on behalf of musicians.

Below are some agencies that provide music licenses:

  • Clearance Domain
  • Audio Network
  • Getty Music Licensing
  • SongFreedom

While paying for licenses can be expensive, it is a legitimate way to use copyrighted music legally on Instagram.

4. Use Instrumental Versions

Instagram’s policies state that the use of copyrighted music with lyrics is not allowed, but using instrumental versions of songs is permitted. Creators can use instrumental versions to add music to their posts without worrying about copyright infringement.

Some resources for finding instrumental versions of songs include:

  • Karaoke versions of songs on YouTube
  • Spotify’s Instrumental Pop Covers playlist
  • Websites like InstrumentalFx that offer instrumental versions of popular songs
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Using instrumental versions can provide a familiar sound while still being compliant with Instagram’s policies.

5. Create Sound Effects

Another alternative to using copyrighted music is to create sound effects that add to the overall experience of the video. Sound effects can help to heighten emotions and reinforce messages in a video, much like a musical score.

Here are some kinds of sound effects that can be useful:

  • Foley sound effects:
  • These are the sounds of everyday objects that enhance a particular scene.

  • Ambient sound effects:
  • These are sounds that exist in the background.

  • Soundscapes:
  • These are a collection of ambient sounds to create an environment that emulates a particular setting.

  • Audio cues:
  • These are sounds that indicate changes in the video.

By creating sound effects, you can add to the emotional and storytelling depth of your content.

In conclusion, the above-listed alternatives can provide creators with the ability to produce high-quality music-filled content while complying with Instagram’s policies. Keeping your content legal while still providing a unique, creative aspect will go a long way in making your posts stand out.

Options Pros Cons
Create Original Music – Complete creative freedom
– Highlights individual musical abilities
– Requires musical talent
– May involve costs for recording and mixing software
Use Royalty-Free Music – Extensive music library
– Cost-effective compared to licensing fees
– May have limited options for a particular sound or genre
– One-off fees still apply
Pay for Music Licenses – Guaranteed compliance with Instagram’s policies
– Access to sought-after copyrighted music
– Expensive
– Time-consuming licensing process
Use Instrumental Versions – Provides a familiar sound
– Compliant with Instagram’s policies
– Limited options for a particular sound or genre
– Lyric-based music options are not available
Create Sound Effects – Enhance emotional and storytelling depth
– Differentiate content from others
– Requires specific software knowledge
– Time-consuming process to make

Through these alternatives, creators can ensure that their music usage meets Instagram’s guidelines while still providing quality, engaging content.

FAQs: How to Use Copyrighted Music on Instagram Legally

1. Can I use any copyrighted music on Instagram?

No, you can’t use any copyrighted music on Instagram unless you have obtained permission to do so. The rules of using copyrighted music are similar to those of playing music in a public place.

2. How can I use copyrighted music on Instagram legally?

You can use copyrighted music on Instagram legally by obtaining permission from the owner of the music. Alternatively, you can use music from the Instagram library or use royalty-free music.

3. Can I use music from popular artists on Instagram?

No, using music from popular artists without permission can result in copyright infringement. You should always check the copyright terms before using any music.

4. Can I get permission to use copyrighted music on Instagram?

Yes, you can get permission to use copyrighted music on Instagram by reaching out to the owner through their website or social media pages. You can also use music licensed under Creative Commons.

5. Is there any other way to use copyrighted music on Instagram legally?

Yes, you can use music from the Instagram library, which is a collection of royalty-free music. Instagram also offers a feature that allows you to add music to your story or reels.

6. What is royalty-free music?

Royalty-free music means that the music can be used without the need for permission or payment of royalties. However, it’s essential to check the terms and conditions of the site to ensure that the music is not copyrighted.

7. What is Creative Commons?

Creative Commons is a type of license that allows creators to choose how their work can be shared and used while retaining the copyright. It permits the use of the work without permission if conditions of the license are followed.

8. What are the consequences of copyright infringement?

The consequences of copyright infringement can be expensive and can include legal action, fines, and publishing a public apology. It can also lead to a ban from using the platform.

9. How can I avoid copyright infringement on Instagram?

You can avoid copyright infringement on Instagram by using music from the Instagram library, getting permission from the owner of the music, or using royalty-free music.

10. Can Instagram remove posts due to copyright infringement?

Yes, Instagram can remove posts due to copyright infringement. Instagram has algorithms that detect any copyrighted music being used without permission and, in some instances, may remove your post.


Using copyrighted music on Instagram can be tricky, but it’s essential to follow the rules and regulations to avoid legal action. You can use music from the Instagram library, obtain permission from the owner, or use royalty-free music. Make sure to check the terms and conditions before using any music and avoid using popular artists’ music without permission. If you want to use copyrighted music on Instagram legally, always respect the creator’s rights and follow the copyright laws.

After reading this article, you should now have a better understanding of how to use copyrighted music on Instagram legally. Remember to obtain permission or use royalty-free music to avoid copyright infringement. Check the terms and conditions, and understand the consequences of copyright infringement. This article aims to provide you with the necessary information to use music legally on Instagram.

Thank you for reading, and we hope you found this article helpful. Don’t forget to check out our other interesting articles.