updated 04:30 pm EST, Mon November 13, 2006
Universal on non-Zunes
Confirming earlier indications that the company is compensating for perceived losses to its music business, Universal on Monday accused all owners of music players beyond Microsoft's Zune of stealing music, according to Billboard. Universal CEO Doug Morris made the public revelation that the music label refused to license its content to Microsoft's online store without royalties, arguing controversially that his company required compensation outside of direct music sales regardless of whether or not Universal artists' music is ever copied to the player. More details follow after the jump.
"These devices are just repositories for stolen music, and they all know it," Morris said, in effect stating that players without such licensing schemes are used primarily to listen to illegally copied songs. The executive also clarified the terms of the deal and noted that the company receives $1 per every $250 Zune sold, distributing half of the profits equally amongst its artists. The company has previously hinted that it will try to negotiate similar terms with Apple and other online store owners in the future but has not said that it would adjust the price of the music itself.