Major Music Companies Lose Case Against Baidu

MP3 search engine okay by Beijing court

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Baidu’s MP3 search engine is often fingered as one of the main reasons for the company’s success.  And for the foreseeable future, it will continue to fill this role, as the People’s High Court of Beijing just ruled against a group led by EMI, SONY BMG, and Universal Music.

At issue is the practice of linking to illegal copies of songs.  Baidu’s been doing it for quite some time – a WebProNews article from 2006 actually covers another court victory.  Music companies had some hopeMajor Music Companies Lose Case Against Baidu of winning this new case, though, since Yahoo China was found guilty on a similar matter last month.

The AFP also notes, "[A]nother Beijing court late last year . . . ordered Baidu to pay a distributor of EMI 68,000 yuan (8,400 dollars) in compensation for providing such web links."

Yet, whether you chalk it up to legal nonsense, the Chinese government’s not-too-friendly-towards-America stance, or, well, whatever, Baidu came out ahead.  It won’t have to pull the MP3 search service, make an apology, or pay any damages.

Google and Yahoo China will go back to the routine of being beaten, then.  And the music companies will, no doubt, go back to the drawing board.

Major Music Companies Lose Case Against Baidu
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