updated 05:45 pm EDT, Tue July 19, 2011
Baidu reaches agreement on music royalties
Baidu has finally struck a deal with music labels in a move that should stem criticism that it has fostered illegal file sharing. The deal, signed with One-Stop China, a joint venture of Universal Music, Warner Music and Sony Music, allows for streaming and even downloading of music from Baidu's servers. The new deal follows a recent arrangement the Chinese internet search giant made helping to ensure that artists received income for music distributed through its site.
"It's an important step forward for Baidu now to be working with three of the major companies on a licensed model in China," said Frances Moore, chief executive of the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI), which represents the recording industry.
"This looks promising for the development of a legitimate digital music business in a market that has for years been largely dominated by piracy."
The deal coincides with the launch of a new Baidu social music platform dubbed Ting. Under the terms of the arrangement, Baidu will reimburse the record labels on a per-play, and per download basis. An ad-supported model will also supplement the scheme with the labels being ensured minimum financial guarantee for each song streamed of downloaded. [via Reuters]