[Slowhand] Silly Stuff

John Mills turbineltd at btconnect.com
Mon Dec 22 05:07:46 EST 2008


Warner threatens to pull stars like Clapton from YouTube

Anyone used to logging on to YouTube to watch Eric Clapton (pictured)
thumping out Cocaine, or Madonna contorting her 50-year-old frame in a top
hat and tails on her latest Sticky and Sweet tour, are soon to be
disappointed. A legal row between Google and Warner music means that the
label is pulling material by their artists off the video sharing site.

The two companies had reached an uneasy ceasefire two years ago, but a fresh
dispute has broken out over the fees that YouTube is prepared to pay when
music videos are watched. "We simply cannot accept terms that fail to
appropriately and fairly compensate recording artists, songwriters, labels
and publishers for the value they provide," said a Warner spokesman.

YouTube was created by two Silicon Valley 20-somethings, Chad Hurley and
Steve Chan, in 2005. Now owned by Google, it has become a hugely popular
sharing site, but one which continues to be the focus of rows over royalty
fees. Viacom, the owner of MTV and Comedy Central channels, is suing the
company for more than $1bn, claiming it is responsible for more than 1.5
billion copyright infringements.

A YouTube blog admitted over the weekend: "Sometimes, if we can't reach
acceptable business terms, we must part ways with successful partners."

Other artists from the Warner stable whose work will be removed from the
site include James Blunt, Led Zepplin, the Red Hot Chilli Peppers and the
Grateful Dead.

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