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Chinese music industry group sues Baidu over infringement

Baidu, which gets lots of traffic on a service that tracks and links to MP3s, most illegally posted, gets sued over alleged copyright violation by Music Copyright Society.

Baidu.com, the top Chinese search engine, gets lots of its traffic from a service that tracks and links to MP3s, most of which are illegally posted. Now a Chinese music industry group is suing the site over alleged copyright violation.

The AP reports:

Music Copyright Society official Qu Jingming said in a statement posted on the society's Web site Friday that Baidu.com provided "music listening, broadcasting and downloading services in various forms on its Web site without approval, and through unfettered piracy, earning huge advertising revenue on its huge number of hits."

The copyright society said its lawsuit, filed in a Beijing court in January, claims Baidu used 50 songs illegally and demands compensation. The alleged piracy forced legitimate online-music providers to shut down, the industry group said.

This comes at a time when Google, which is hoping to catch up to Baidu in the Chinese market, is working with record companies to provide legal links to music for searchers.