Google Blogoscoped

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Traces of Google China’s Music Service

In February this year, the Wall Street Journal reported that Google wants to “crack” the Chinese market with a music-related offering. “The U.S. search giant is in the late planning stages of a joint venture with a Chinese online music company that would permit it to provide free – licensed – music downloads in China,” the WSJ wrote. (Please note the logo above is just for illustrative purposes with no relation to the service...)

Now, several traces of Google Music started to surface. First of all, there’s a bunch of additions to Google’s robots.txt file, which is the file responsible to block search crawlers from indexing certain content. To quote from the update of the file:

Disallow: /musicad
Disallow: /musicas
Disallow: /musicl
Disallow: /musics
Disallow: /musicsearch
Disallow: /musicsp
Disallow: /musiclp

What’s more, when you currently try to access, you will be redirected to a search URL for “周杰伦"*, a popular singer in China, according to Xujie in the forum. The page itself then reads:

Your HTTP Host header doesn’t match the whitelist Host headers:,.*\.(borg|prod)\.google\.com\.?:\d+$ .

We would have denied your request but since you are coming from an internal IP we thought this page would be helpful for you.

Mind you, that’s the public page – you don’t need any internal IP.

[Thanks Brian, Keith Chan and Xujie!]

*The Google translator translates this to “Jay Chou”.

Update: As Ionut and Tony point out in the comments, the robots.txt change that happened is not relevant because it relates to an older Google music service. However, the site still seems relevant as a trace of a potentially upcoming new Chinese Google Music service (or an upcoming new feature for China integrated into Google’s existing music services). And as another update, the “you are coming from an internal IP” message has now been replaced by a more regular “not found” page. [Thanks Ionut and Tony!]


Blog  |  Forum     more >> Archive | Feed | Google's blogs | About


This site unofficially covers Google™ and more with some rights reserved. Join our forum!