Top Search Engine to Offer Free Music Downloads
Baidu, China’s largest search engine, is now offering free music downloads. This is part of Baidu’s plan to steer away from the image of a provider of pirated content. Baidu will be launching the program later this month, but no details on the service have been given out yet.
The company has long been criticized for providing music search in mp3 files that give links to sites that are hosting pirated music on different third party sites. The company’s new service will be called Ting, that means listen in English. The company mentioned that they are also working to create partnerships with recording companies that can provide them with licensed music downloads.
The Baidu MP3 search engine pushed the company to the top, as of now the company currently holds 75.8 percent of the China’s search engine market, Google is second. Baidu is also addressing the piracy issues that concern its music services by paying an agency representing songwriters that will pay them for every song that is downloaded in their site. The payment will only compensate the songwriters of the songs but not the record labels.
This move will definitely help Baidu to improve their reputation, although they are not the only site that is providing free, legal music services in China.