San Diego Business Journal

A lawsuit filed against digital music service provider MP3.com doesn't mean the record industry is against using the Internet as a means of getting music out to the masses.

So says Cary Sherman, senior executive vice president and general counsel for the Washington, D.C.-based Recording Industry Association of American (RIAA).

"The bottom line is that the legitimate record industry thinks that the Internet provides all sorts of fabulous new opportunities to get music out to consumers in new ways and finding new markets that didn't exist before," Sherman said. "The only thing (record) companies want is that the uses be licensed, and that they be legitimate uses where the creator and copyright owner get paid."

In late April, a U.S. District Court judge in New York ruled that La Jolla-based MP3.com infringed on copyrights held by a group of major labels by creating a database of more than 80,000 albums.

The complaint focuses on MP3.com's My.MP3.com service, which allows users to store their music digitally and then access it from anywhere via the Internet.

"What MP3.com is pursuing with their new listening service is a particular business model," Sherman said. "It's one of many things we're going to be seeing in the next couple of years. Their problem was in putting that entire system together without authorization.