Baidu to start to pay songwriters royalties and launch music service

May 2011

Internet, music publishing

Giant Chinese search engine Baidu have said that they have reached an agreement with the Music Copyright Society of China to start paying a publishing royalty on any MP3s downloaded or streamed via the search platform. Baidu has been the target of both criticism and legal actions in the past for its MP3 search function, which lets users specifically search the net for MP3 files by artist or song name – the Vast majority of which come from unlicensed servers. Under the new agreement with MCSC, Baidu will pass a share of advertising revenue on for every track accessed via the search platform from a new music service that Baidu plans to launch in May. Baidu spokesman Kaiser Kuo told Reuters the Baidu Ting service will offer streaming, downloads and social networking elements, and will be supported in part by advertising and is in talks with the major labels.

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