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Zomba, MP3.Com Settle Lawsuit

Zomba Records, the powerful independent record label that is home to the Backstreet Boys and Britney Spears, said Thursday it had settled a copyright infringement lawsuit with online music company MP3.com Inc., a unit of Vivendi Universal.

“The parties have settled the litigation between them and resolved their differences to their mutual satisfaction and have entered into a licensing arrangement for the My.mp3 service,” Zomba said in a statement.

The terms were not disclosed.

The settlement with Zomba comes just about a week after more than 50 music publishers and songwriters, including country artist Vince Gill’s publishing companies filed yet another lawsuit against MP3.com Inc.

MP3.com said it was pleased the case with Zomba had been settled.

Officials from Vivendi Universal, which Wednesday completed its purchase of MP3.com for $372 million, were not immediately available.

Thursday, the French media group named Robin Richards as chairman and chief executive of online music provider MP3.com.

Richards was the founding president of MP3.com, which is currently transforming itself from music industry rebel to partner and has paid out more than $160 million to major labels and publishers to resolve a different copyright suit.

That suit and the lawsuit by Zomba stemmed from the company’s My.MP3.com service, which allowed users to create an online locker of CDs they already owned and which enabled them to listen to from any computer with an Internet connection.

“MP3.com welcomes the opportunity to infuse Vivendi Universal with our robust technology and infrastructure products and services,” Richards said in a statement Wednesday.

Zomba sued MP3.com in September charging it with willful copyright infringement.

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