French ISP enhances offering with (unlicensed) music services

Music companies and ISPs have an uneasy relationship at the moment in many European countries as the music industry tries to get ISPs to take some responsibility for the illegal traffic passing through their networks.

Neuf Cegetel, a French ISP, recently announced a new music venture offering free downloads from the Universal Music catalogue to new broadband sign-ups. In response Free.fr announced a new deal with Deezer.com to provide the music for its homepage. Deezer used to be Blogmusik.net and was closed down earlier this year. SACEM, the French publishers society, has licensed Deezer, but Universal Music has asked for its catalog to be withdrawn.

In the Ratiatum article the point is raised that SACEM could grant a license if Deezer was considered like radio, but this is unlikely and as such each music company (like Universal) must strike it’s own deal with the service.

It is not surprising that Free would launch an attack against Neuf Cegetel’s offer, but to do so with a service that has only the agreement of the publishers society is a faux pas in the eyes of the music companies.

Meanwhile Deezer is laughing as it’s traffic of French visitors increases enormously taking it from an Alexa ranking of about 70,000 3 weeks ago to nearer 1,500 this week. Although today the site is down with a note saying it will be back tomorrow – for legal reasons or because it can’t cope with the volume of visitors?

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Explore posts in the same categories: Europe, France, ISPs, Music

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