Kenyan corporates who took part in the Jerusalema Challenge craze a few months ago could end up paying fines for using the song in advertising their ventures/products or for public relations purposes.
This is according to a statement by Warner Music, a recording label managing Master KG who is the brains behind the Jerusalema hit song together with Nomcebo Zikode.
Both Master KG and Zikode are South Africans.
Warner in a statement to Germany’s Deutshce Welle (DW) said that the label will be seeking a license fee from all entities in East Africa which made the video “as an advertising or image-promoting effect in favor of an institution, organisation or company”.
The label argued that these entities should have sought for permission by paying for a license. The label did not, however, say how much it would charge for the licenses.
Individuals who took place in the Jerusalema Challenge will be exempted from the fine.
In Kenya, several corporates made a name with the Jerusalema Challenge among them, a leading super market and a tours and travel company.
The Kenyan Parliament also falls prey to the fine given that it took part in the Jerusalema Challenge as part of a public relations exercise.
Besides the August House, Nairobi and Mombasa County governments took part in the challenge.
Jerusalema enjoyed the limelight in 2020 as the world battled the COVID-19 pandemic.
Warner Music released the song in late 2019 not knowing that it would become 2020’s biggest song.
It has more than 60 million streams on American-owned streaming service Spotify and enjoy a similar number of views on YouTube.
In Germany, the Ministry of Interior of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia whose departments participates in the challenge has already paid the fines to Warner Music.
Warner Music’s move sparked a sharp debate online as different people called out the label saying its timing to impose fines was off.
Some said that the label could have asked people to delete the videos before moving on to impose fines.