Madrid testing legal loophole for online tunes

Thanks to Lewis Benge for mailing us in with the below story.

A new music download service, launched on Tuesday in Madrid, tests a legal loophole in Spanish copyright law that appears to give Web sites permission to sell songs online without consent from record companies.

Running under a banner on its homepage that reads "No Rules. No limits," the new service, Puretunes.com, is sure to raise the ire of the music industry.

Major recording labels Sony Music, Warner Music, Universal Music, BMG, and EMI have fiercely tried to crack down on unauthorized businesses that distribute songs online.

The music industry has been scrambling to derail online file-sharing services that enable consumers to trade tracks for free. Such services have contributed to the industry's steep sales decline, highlighted on Tuesday by news EMI's sales of recorded music fell 12.6 percent in the last financial year.

According to Javier Siguenza, a Madrid-based lawyer representing Puretunes, the new company abides by Spanish copyright law even though it does not have direct authorization from the music labels themselves.

News source: Reuters

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