News Corp.’s MySpace and Sony-BMG have signed a licensing deal where the music label and the social network will share sponsorship and ad revenue. Not much else in the way of detail: We don’t know what the split is, how many artists, songs, etc. are involved. Still, it should be a good deal for both sides, in a “what took you so long?” kind of way.
The deal works for MySpace, because music is core to that site’s appeal, and a wide-ranging deal with a major label helps expand its offerings. And it works for Sony-BMG because it’s free money, more or less: Sony doesn’t have to make any more music — it only has to find people willing to advertise next to it.
Most of the labels have deals with big video sites so they can get paid when their videos are shown, and Warner Music Group has a deal to sell its songs via MySpace’s music store, but those deals aren’t likely to generate significant money. Advertising, though, could provide real cash for a business that really needs it; if the big lables are going to survive, they’ll need more deals like this. Release