News In Brief
The US District Court in New York ruled that MP3.com violated copyright law with a database by which users can effectively store music and then access it via any computer connected to the Internet. The lawsuit was filed earlier this year by major record labels BMG, Seagram Co.'s Universal Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, and Time Warner Inc.'s music group. MP3.com's chief executive officer vowed an appeal and said the San Diego-based company planned to keep the site operating for its estimated 400,000 customers unless a court order forces it to stop. Analysts have said damages awarded in the case could reach as much as $6 billion.
For the second time this year, negotiations broke down in the effort by British advertising giant WPP Group to acquire Young & Rubicam Inc., sources close to the discussions said. The deal, estimated to be in the $5 billion range, would result in the world's largest ad agency. Y&R, based in New York, was continuing discussions with another European firm, Publicis of France. A merger between those two companies would rank it fourth in the world in terms of revenues, behind WPP, which is currently No. 3.
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