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UMG Warns, Woos YouTube and MySpace

18 Sep, 2006 By: Erik Gruenwedel

The world's largest music company, Universal Music Group, remains in content-license negotiations with teen-based community Web sites YouTube and MySpace, despite CEO Doug Morris warning legal action against ongoing copyright infringements.

Morris, who spoke last week at the Merrill Lynch entertainment conference in Pasadena, Calif., said he wouldn't rule out legal action against the sites should license talks reach an impasse.

Sources familiar with the negotiations said unlike Warner Music Group, which chose to ignore past infringements and announced a music video license deal with YouTube, UMG is seeking compensation for past occurrences.

Peter Lofrumento, SVP of corporate communications for UMG, wouldn't comment on the negotiations but reiterated the prevalence of “massive [copyright] infringement” was going to have to stop either through negotiations or legal action.

“We are not going to tolerate people building their business on the backs of our content without compensating us,” Lofrumento said.

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