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Qtrax announces deals with EMI and Sony / ATV, still can't distribute content

Nilay Patel
03.04.08
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Man, Qtrax just can't stop over-hyping and under-delivering, can it? The company's trumpeting new deals today with EMI Publishing, Sony / ATV Music Publishing, and TVT Records, but of the three deals, only TVT will actually have music available for download. The deals with EMI and Sony / ATV are for publishing rights only, and since publishing companies only represent songwriters, and don't actually own the rights to the song recordings, Qtrax still can't offer songs to consumers. It's confusing, but Qtrax needs both types of deals to make things work. Still, considering that the EMI and Sony agreements are extensions of existing agreements, it's a little strange for Qtrax to hype them up -- if you're keeping score at home, this is essentially the same sort of half-truth Qtrax launched under, so it's pretty ballsy of the company to try and pull it again. On the other hand, getting TVT on board is no small feat -- TVT artists include Lil Jon, Ambulance LTD, Dude 'N Em, The Polyphonic Spree, and The Cinematics, so it looks like Qtrax might be getting better at this whole "signing actual deals with labels" thing.

Update: We had said in an earlier version of this post that several major labels had denied having deals in place with Qtrax -- while that's still true, the information was a few weeks old. The deals announced today are for real, but until Qtrax sorts out actual content-distribution rights, nothing's really changed.

[Via Tech Digest]

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