Lycos, Norway's FAST to offer MP3 search

Lycos has signed an agreement with a Norwegian Internet search specialist that will make it easier to find MP3-compressed digital recordings on the Internet. Under the exclusive deal, Lycos will enable Web users to input keywords and search for music links in FAST's database. FAST's search technology scans the Web on an hourly basis for new MP3 files and monitors the availability of servers offering MP3 files.

Lycos has signed an agreement with a Norwegian Internet search specialist that will make it easier to find digital recordings on the Internet.

Under the exclusive deal with Oslo, Norway-based Fast Search & Transfer ASA (FAST), Lycos will enable Web users to input keywords and search for music links in FAST's database. The database will display links to music compressed with the MP3 format, the companies said.

FAST's search technology scans the Web on an hourly basis for new MP3 files and monitors the availability of servers offering MP3 files, the companies said. The search will deliver links to users, not actual MP3 files, they added. The links are ranked according to "freshness," the companies said. The service is at http://mp3.lycos.com/ and can be accessed through Lycos' home page.

The duo claims the site is the first search service dedicated to MP3 files. MP3 music files available on the Web -- many of which are pirated versions that violate copyright laws -- have blossomed in the past half year, angering record companies.

In the statement, Lycos and FAST were careful to clarify that they only offer links to MP3 sites and will not record or directly offer MP3 files.

Lycos, in Waltham, Massachusetts, is at +1-781-370-2885 or http://www.lycos.com/. FAST, Oslo, Norway, is at http://www.fast.no/.

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