EMI Drops Lawsuit Against Baidu.com
January 16, 2007 at 5:46 AM (PT)
BLOOMBERG reports that EMI GROUP, which lost a copyright-infringement lawsuit against BAIDU.COM INC., will drop its appeal and work with the CHINESE Internet search site to win advertising by offering free online samples of its music.
BAIDU will sell online ads for a section of its website featuring streaming samples of EMI's Chinese-language music, the BEIJING-based company said in a statement today. EMI and BAIDU will share the ad revenue, they said, without providing details.
The agreement with BAIDU, which has triple the market share of closest rival GOOGLE in its home market, may help LONDON-based EMI boost sales in CHINA, where 90% of music is pirated. EMI, SONY BMG MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT and other companies have been in talks with YAHOO!'s CHINA unit on ways to distribute music in the country, while guarding against piracy.
"A traditional business of making people pay for music downloads is not going to work in CHINA," said ANALYSYS INTERNATIONAL Asst. VP FLORIAN PIHS. "Using music to attract users has more potential."
Sales of pirated music are worth $400 million annually in CHINA.