In another blow to homemade music-ripping everywhere, the website YouTube-MP3.org will be shutting down indefinitely following the results of a copyright infringement lawsuit. The website’s domain name has been handed over to the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).
Last year a group of record labels that were represented by the RIAA took the website to court, as the case was made that millions of users ripping audio directly from YouTube videos was a threat to music revenue. In addition, the case was made that the website had been bypassing YouTube’s copyright protection.
The year-long legal case filed by the California federal court, reached a settlement between the two parties only this week– the website agreed to shut down, and website owner, Philip Matesanz, ordered to pay an undisclosed settlement amount.
Despite the major blow to stream-ripping that the website’s closure created, there is still no shortage of other websites that perform a similar service. It seems that the larger online music landscape provides many more sharing options than when Napster was swiftly closed down in 2001 thanks to Metallica.
The infringement case and subsequent shutdown of YouTube-MP3.org, follows a similar ongoing situation concerning the Swedish website The Pirate Bay. The Pirate Bay, a torrenting website that has caused controversy due to frequent legal raids and anti-piracy lawsuits. Despite all this, the site owners have always managed to keep The Pirate Bay online.
File-sharing and music-ripping websites will remain under legal fire. For listeners, recording music off the radio and onto cassette tapes seems the only legal way to share music. But with the recent renaissance of vinyl records, stranger things have come back into style.