“Deezer is the first juke box on demand totally free in the world!” that’s according to Deezer.
Brief recap: BlogMusik – French mp3 streaming site – is closed down by SACEM (equivalent to ASCAP or BMI in the US, or SOCAN in Canada). BlogMusik sheds skin, becomes Deezer. Deezer signs a deal with almighty SACEM (first of its kind in France – publicity revenue sharing – exact terms kept secret). Deezer’s on a roll, signs deal with Free – France’s 2nd largest ISP – to provide users with unlimited streamed music (nearly 200,000 tracks to date) for nowt!
Sun shines from Deezer’s backend…
Meanwhile on the other side of town… Universal Music France teams up with France’s 3rd largest ISP (neuf.fr – same parent company, Vivendi) to launch a Windows DRM-based, unlimited music job. Universal don’t take kindly to the Deezer/Free deal announced just 2 days after their ‘heavily marketed‘ ‘First of its kind‘ – ISP deal. Universal decides Deezer are unlawfully exploiting the Universal music catalogue and say ‘remove them or we’re all in court’.
“It’s a logical position for Universal to take, Deezer is in the wrong from an “intellectual property” point of view” says SPPF boss (which regroups the independant labels in France), JÃ©rÃ´me Roger.
Sun to set on Deezer ?
No, not now, not after the SACEM handshake & the Free deal. Apart from being the second most important ISP in France, Free are “the last independent one, probably the most innovative and net-savvy” [#]. Although it does seem strange that Deezer have yet to strike a deal with any of the major labels like EMI, Warner or Sony-BMG, nor the SPPF for that matter.
‘Free music financed by ads’ is a model that will be adopted by many, or so they saying. YourFreeMusicDownloads is up with more than a million tracks and 500 more added daily. A few more are on the horizon, Qtrax, Spiral Frog and Airtist for example. Free music with artists still being renumerated – everybody’s happy, no ?! Except the major labels of course…what a shame. As a slashdot reader notes: “Hopefully this will prove to be enough of a viable business model in France that the RIAA/SoundExchange will take note and head down a different road than their current one…”
For the latest news on the U.S.A. SoundExchange scuffle | Internet Radio Saved – For Now
BlogMusik/Deezer has been around sinces June 2006, created by Daniel Marhely & Jonathan Benassaya, it’s available in 16 languages.