MP3.com, Warner Music Reported Close To Deal

Songs by artists such as Kid Rock and Madonna would be made available online.

MP3.com is close to sealing a deal with the Warner Music Group (Kid Rock, Madonna) to license Warner songs for the My.MP3.com online CD-storage and playback service.

A source close to the negotiations said they were nearly complete but that a final agreement "could be days — it could be weeks away."

A federal judge ruled in April that the service — which is centered on a CD database MP3.com created without a license — infringed on music industry copyrights.

MP3.com could settle Warner's infringement claim for $15 million to $20 million and pay licensing fees on top of that, the Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday (June 7). Major-label group EMI (Smashing Pumpkins, Beastie Boys) is scheduled to merge with Warner later this year.

Last month, MP3.com CEO Michael Robertson said his San Diego company was negotiating with all major-label groups on penalties and licensing fees. An MP3.com spokesperson did not return a call for comment Wednesday.

Representatives from Universal (DMX, Shania Twain) and Sony (Pearl Jam, Rage Against the Machine) said they could not comment on negotiations because the case is ongoing. A BMG (Santana, Britney Spears) spokesperson did not return a call for comment.

(This story was updated at 11:00 p.m. EDT Wednesday, June 7, 2000.)