Gracenote Gets Access to Pre-Release Song Data for ID Services


Cannes, France – Gracenote, a unit of Sony
that provides song identification and media database services, announced on Monday
that it has signed deals with the four major record labels and hundreds of top
independents that will allow it to receive pre-release song data. The company
said obtaining this track listing and cover art data prior to release means
that services using Gracenote will be able to offer that data to consumers as
soon as the music is publicly released. Gracenote’s service currently catalogs
more than 100 million tracks and 8 million CDs.


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SoundCloud, Hype Machine Team to Serve Music to Bloggers


– SoundCloud, the provider of a music distribution platform for labels and
artists, on Monday announced a partnership with music blog aggregator The Hype
Machine. The deal will allow artists and labels to serve tracks directly to
bloggers through SoundCloud, via embeddable SoundCloud players on their sites. The
Hype Machine will detect these players across blogs that it aggregates, and
allow tracks to be streamed on its own site. Artists and labels will then also be
able to access data on the music, including number of plays and which blogs
picked up their tracks. Initial partners include Domino Records and artists
including Massive Attack.


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IODA Expand Mobile Distribution in China with R2G


Cannes, France – IODA, a digital distributor of
independent music, announced on Monday that it has signed a deal with China’s R2G, which will distribute
IODA-represented ringtones and full tracks through its carrier partners in China. IODA’s 2
million tracks will now be available through R2G to China Mobile, China Unicom
and China Telecom subscribers.


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Bach Technology's MusicDNA Aims to Supplant MP3 Format


Cannes, France – Bach Technology on Monday
introduced MusicDNA, a new digital music file format intended to supplant MP3
by adding updateable lyrics, artwork, tour dates, videos and other content to
the file.

Investors in the company include MP3 format inventor Karlheinz Brandenburg and 247
Inc., a company run by former Sony Music CEO Shigeo Maruyama.

The MusicDNA
format is backwards compatible with MP3, meaning songs in the MusicDNA format
will play on all MP3 players — including the iPod.

The additional content
appears while the music file is playing on a free software player, and may be
updated with new content from labels and artists whenever the player is
connected to the Internet.

Bach said it is in talks with all the major labels,
but so far has garnered support from independent labels including Beggars
Group, Tommy Boy, Delta Records and Amiata Records.

Other partners include a
number of digital music retailers and distributors, such as R2G (China), InProdicon (Sweden),
Rebeat Digital (Germany),
PeoplesMusicStore (U.K.) and
CatchMedia (U.S.).

Bach plans to beta test the MusicDNA format with partners this spring before a
full commercial rollout in the summer.

Apple recently introduced its own music-plus-data
file format, iTunes LP, which bundles music videos, liner notes and artwork
with album purchases.


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HP to Bundle Omnifone Music Service on PCs in Europe


Cannes, France – PC maker HP (NYSE: HPQ) on Monday
announced a deal with European digital music service operator Omnifone, to
bundle the company’s MusicStation Desktop unlimited music service on 16 HP
models in 10 European countries.

Omnifone also announced the launch of its MusicStation
service — which offers a catalog of 6.5 million tracks — in the U.K., France,
Germany, Italy, Spain,
Austria, Belgium, The Netherlands, Sweden and Switzerland.

The offer bundled with
new HP Pavilion, Compaq Presario and HP Envy models includes a 14-day free
trial of the Omnifone service, which is otherwise available for euro 9.99 (about
$14.14) per month.

The subscription fee includes the ability for users to
download their favorite 10 tracks each month as MP3s.


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Electronic Arts' "Mass Effect 2" Leaked Online Before Release


Los Angeles – Days before its official release, video game publisher
Electronic Arts’ (NASD: ERTS) "Mass Effect 2" was uploaded to file-sharing
networks and has since been downloaded over 300,000 times, TorrentFreak

Set for release on Tuesday in North America,
both the PC and Xbox 360 versions of the BioWare-developed game are said to
have appeared on BitTorrent last Thursday.

TorrentFreak noted that those
downloading the game will not receive a network card that comes with the retail
version, which is required to download in-game items and new missions — but
added that the game can be played without it.


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China Denies Role in Cyber Attack on Google


– The Chinese government has strongly denied any involvement in the recent
cyber attacks on Google’s (NASD:  GOOG) Gmail servers that targeted the accounts of Chinese
human rights activists, the Associated Press reported. "Any accusation
that the Chinese government participated in cyberattacks, either in an explicit
or indirect way, is groundless and aims to discredit China," a Foreign Ministry spokesman
told the official Xinhua News Agency.

Last week, evidence was uncovered that
the attacks on Google were committed using Chinese software, although no direct
link has yet been made to the Chinese government.

The event led Google to
consider exiting China
entirely, and end the censorship of its search results in the country demanded by the
Chinese government.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton also last week made
an official rebuke of Internet censorship that seemingly escalated
tensions between the two countries.

Meanwhile, five websites operated by
Chinese human rights activists suffered attacks over the weekend that made them
inaccessible to users, IDG News Service reported.

The sites targeted by the denial-of-service attacks included
those of advocacy group Chinese Human Rights Defenders; a group called Civil
Rights and Livelihood Watch; and two news sites operated by Chinese human
rights activists.


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(IDG News Service)
(DMW previous coverage)

MumboJumbo Wins $4.6M Verdict Against Rival PopCap


Dallas – Casual games
publisher MumboJumbo announced on Monday that a court in Texas has ruled in its favor in a breach of
contract claim against rival PopCap Games, which has been ordered to pay
MumboJumbo $4.6 million in damages.

Dallas-based MumboJumbo partnered with
PopCap in 2006 to produce and distribute PopCap titles in North

A jury in the 193rd Civil District Court in Dallas County
found that PopCap breached this contract when it market and sold these titles
on its own.

MumboJumbo said that internal PopCap emails were presented at trial that "showed the company employed a calculated use of false and
misleading statements in order to sour that business relationship."


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Survey: 39% of Facebook Users Have Donated to Haitian Relief


New York – Thirty-nine
percent of Facebook users in the U.S.,
U.K. and Australia have already donated money or goods to
the relief efforts following the Jan. 12 earthquake in Haiti, including 13% through
text-messaging, according to a new survey by Facebook and The Nielsen Company.

Another 21% of users said that they have not yet given to the cause, but plan
to do so.

Facebook users ages 50 and older are nearly twice as likely to have
donated goods or money than teenagers (61% to 36%).

When it comes to corporate
support of the relief efforts, 29% of users believe corporations are doing
their part, while 42% say they are not.

The vast majority of respondents called
the earthquake a wake-up call, with three-quarters saying that they are either
"not very" or "not at all" prepared for a natural disaster,

The survey involved more than 50,000 Facebook users ages 13 and


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College Test-sharing Site Koofers Scores $1.55 Million


Reston, Va. – Koofers, the developer of an online
community where college students share old exams, quizzes and class notes for
use as study aids, has raised $1.55 million in new funding, according to a
filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

The company, said that
it still plans to raise another $500,000 in the round.

Though names of the new
investors were not overtly disclosed, Anthony Lee, a general partner from Altos
Ventures, and John Backus, a principal at New Atlantic Ventures, are listed among
the company’s directors.

Koofers secured its first $500,000 in institutional
funding in late 2008, after receiving seed funding from LaunchBox Digital.


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(SEC filing)