Every week, 2,100 registered users get an access code to download a song from the Universal Music Belgium catalogue. A limit of 300 downloads can be made every 24 hours. To make sure that the free service is limited to Belgian listeners, registration requires a local mobile phone number.
According to NRJ Belgium Managing Director Bruno Van Sieleghem, the operation is legal because the broadcaster itself pays €1.099 for each download.
“We found car manufacturer Renault to sponsor the first three months, to promote the launch of their new Twingo model in return for advertising and visibility on the site,” said Van Sieleghem. “Their marketing campaign perfectly fits the young image of the ‘download generation.'”
The launch of the service was not without troubles, however. As Belgian advertising blogger David Hdiscovered, the URL for the free music download site was reported in some newspapers as
www.freemusic.be, a cybersquatter unconnected with the NRJ–Universal project. The actual site URL has a hyphen,