MySpace is set to launch a digital music platform and has got some of the biggest music labels interested in joining forces.
According to the New York Post, the social networking giant has been working on a digital-music venture with Sony BMG and Warner Music Group and is close to inking a deal, which may become official as soon as this week.
The new MySpace Music platform will combine pay-per-download and ad-supported video and audio.
"The concept of the joint venture is to bring in all forms of [making money from digital music] and much more tightly integrate them," one industry insider close told the Post explained.
"Everybody's operating with a sense of urgency to try to close it out," another source said.
The networking powerhouse isn't linking up with the major record labels for money as is the case with most music licensing agreements. Instead of cash, the labels are trading content rights in exchange for minority equity stakes in MySpace Music as well as the opportunity to participate in the advertising money that Rupert Murdoch's media company, News Corp. (which owns MySpace) expects to rake in from the service.
MySpace pulls in over 15 million unique monthly visitors to its music site, specializing in new music promotion and tour dates.
Combined, the record companies will hold less than a 50 percent stake in the MySpace venture, but the exact share will be determined by market share.
MySpace, News Corp., Sony BMG, and Warner all declined to comment.
The service is expected to launch later this year
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