Qtrax Loses Tracks

In the how-not-to-launch-a-business category we have Qtrax, an ad-supported peer-to-peer music download network that had supposedly signed deals with all four major record labels and was launching today with a catalog of 25 million songs. Only it doesn’t seem to have those deals with the record labels after all.

While Qtrax CEO Allan Klepfisz assures the world that this is all a misunderstanding and deals would be signed soon (and I was able to find a few press releases and stories indicating that both EMI and Universal Music Group had signed some kind of deal with Qtrax), the site doesn’t have 25 million songs and so far appears to have scored little more than some incredibly negative press.

It’s only the first month of the year, but this should certainly be a contender for the Business 2.0 Fortune 101 Dumbest Moments in Business for 2008.

Ad-Supported “Free” Music Plays On: SpiralFrog, Imeem, QTrax

[qi:005] As Apple (APPL) and Amazon (AMZN) duke it out in the MP3 price war, music publishers are still trying to figure out how to cash in on a crowd that will go to great lengths to get its music for free.
Imeem, a San Francisco-based music discovery startup, said it has signed a content agreement with Sony BMG Music Entertainment that gives users access to the Sony(SNE)-Bertelsmann joint venture’s digital catalog of music and video for ad-supported, “free” streaming of these files.
The company, which competes with Project Playlist, makes a customizable music playlist that can be embedded into MySpace and Facebook profiles. This is its second deal with a major label; it inked a similar partnership with Warner Music Group (WMG) earlier this summer.
SpiralFrog, which has a partnership with Vivendi’s (V) Universal Music Group, also offers free music downloads, but of course there’s a catch (actually there’s about 20 catches).
Launched earlier this month after lengthy delays, SpiralFrog makes money through site ads, and then splits these profits with the music publisher. Read More about Ad-Supported “Free” Music Plays On: SpiralFrog, Imeem, QTrax