The state-supported Chinese search engine Baidu has signed a deal for legal music with One Stop China that lets users download or stream music from all four major labels. Presumably, you won’t be hearing a lot of protest music on this particular offering since Baidu actively censors its content to please the Chinese government.
With this announcement, this week’s news that the U.S. version of Spotify is here, and a deluge of cloud-based music services (Google Music, Amazon, iCloud, etc.), the music industry may have finally gotten wise. Until now, Baidu was always in hot water for directing users’ .mp3 searches to illegal downloads. In addition to the deal, Baidu also announced Ting, a social networking music site.