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EMI and Warner tout camera phone software

But who got there first?

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EMI Music and Atlantic Records UK (a division of Warner Music) have teamed up with mobile content provider ShoZu, in separate deals, to enable some artists to instantly upload live video footage and photographs from their phones onto social networking websites.

In the Atlantic corner, bands including the likes of Hard-Fi and Hadouken will be using the service.

Over at EMI, Air Traffic, Gisli and The Aliens will be among the first artists on the label to use the software.

The patented technology behind ShoZu – founded in London in 2001 – uses data replication, which should allow content to quietly synchronise in the background. The software can be used on 155 different mobile phones, including GPS and Wi-Fi models.

Jennifer Grenz, senior director of marketing at ShoZu, said: "The camera phone is a powerful tool to capture a part of the music experience. It's there on the tour bus, backstage, at parties, in the studio, and even at home, and it can bring fans right into their favourite bands' lives like a fly on the wall."

With music fans increasingly uploading footage and photos of live events onto websites such as YouTube and Flickr, it comes as little surprise that some of the majors have decided to embrace the software.

Using less-established acts as guinea pigs to effectively trial out a new way of reaching fans online could be seen as an attempt by the record firms to try and stem the growth of user-generated content.

EMI's digital media manager Eric Winbolt said: "We are continuously looking at new ways to empower our artists to deliver interesting and insightful content to their fans. ShoZu provides the perfect platform with a crucial combination of simple and rapid mobile connectivity that allows fans to get up close and personal with their favourite performers."

In a statement which echoed EMI sentiments, Jack Melhuish at Atlantic said: "We continue to explore new ways of connecting music fans with the bands they love. With ShoZu, we can make it easy and fun for our artists to embrace the power of social networking sites and other Web 2.0 technologies and offer fans unique and exciting content."

But who sealed the European deal with ShoZu first? Apparently, it was Warner – by a nose, or should that read, ear?

More about ShoZu here. ®

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