After much debate and disapproval regarding Amazon’s Cloud Drive, the online retailer is finally meeting with record labels today to discuss licensing rights.
Amazon’s Cloud Drive is an internet-based storage application that offers 5 GB of storage free of charge. Users can store music, pictures and documents in the cloud and pull them up on different devices. The Cloud Drive also features a Cloud Player, which is a music streaming application.
When Amazon first launched the Cloud Player in March of this year, record labels were angered at the fact that Amazon hadn’t paid for licensing rights to stream music to its users. According to those in the music industry, Amazon only had licensing rights to sell digital downloads, which may make the new Cloud Drive illegal.
Amazon released a letter to record labels on Monday saying that the Cloud Drive is legal, and even compared it to Microsoft’s SkyDrive or Google Docs. The letter also noted that Amazon’s Cloud Player is similar to Microsoft’s Windows Media Player, and that it had increased sales of digital songs in Amazon’s MP3 store.
Despite Amazon’s disagreement with record labels over the legality of the Cloud Drive, the online retail giant is willing to meet with record labels today to discuss licensing rights.
“We don’t publicly discuss our meetings with partners, and we have not announced any changes to Amazon Cloud Drive or Amazon Cloud Player since the launch,” said Cat Griffin, an Amazon spokeswoman.
Record labels are likely eager to meet with Amazon as well since the risk of other companies following in Amazon’s footsteps is too great to chance. Other companies could create services like the Cloud Drive, where the music industry is not included in regards to licensing rights.
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