~article~ Music industry to sue Yahoo China

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From : http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/5142748.stm

The music industry is to sue Yahoo China for allegedly providing links
to pirated tracks.

"We've started the process and as far as we're concerned we're on a
track to litigation," John Kennedy, chairman of the IFPI, told

Yahoo China is the second largest search engine in the country, and is
40% owned by Yahoo Inc.

Mr Kennedy told Bloomberg he hoped that negotiation could still
prevent legal proceedings from starting.

Last year the International Federation of the Phonographic Industries,
whose members include EMI, Sony BMG and Warner Music, sued Baidu, the
most popular search engine in China and the dispute is ongoing.


Mr Kennedy declined to say how much in damages the music industry was
seeking, if its claim proved successful.

With similar cases in the US damages "would certainly run into tens of
millions and perhaps even more than that,'' he said.

The IFPI has made the Chinese market a priority for future music

In a speech to the China International Forum on the Audio Visual
Industry last month Mr Kennedy said China was "the most exciting new
market in the world for the international recording industry".

In terms of music sales China is the 20th ranked music market in the
world and the fifth in Asia, behind Japan, Korea, India and Taiwan.

Mr Kennedy warned that the country had to counter a "culture of music
piracy" if it were to realise its commercial potential.

Illegal sales of music in China are valued by the IFPI at about $400m
(£216m), with about 90% of all recordings being illegal.

A simple search on Yahoo China found mp3 files of recent releases for
direct download within a few clicks.

A spokesman for Yahoo China, Porter Erisman, said the search engine
was acting "within the law."

"We respect intellectual property rights," he said. "If someone sees
something on our site that violates intellectual property rights,
there is a process for removing it."

Mr Erisman said the company is talking with music companies about
creating a licensed music download system for China.


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