Shackled by the FBI

by NewsEditor_ on September 14th, 2015 in Industry and Security News.

The FBI and US Justice Department have seized popular music sharing website for copyright infringement. Visitors to the site were served with the above FBI anti-piracy banner signaling the seizure of the domain. The website often featured pirated versions of pre-release music, including albums by Big Sean, Lil’ Wayne and Drake. According to this article, Kanye West’s upcoming album SWISH was recorded from outside of a listening party and uploaded to Sharebeast earlier this year. 

The Recording Industry Association of America reacted positively to the news. RIAA Chairman and CEO Cary Sherman stated, “This is a huge win for the music community and legitimate music services. Sharebeast operated with flagrant disregard for the rights of artists and labels while undermining the legal marketplace. Millions of users accessed songs from Sharebeast each month without one penny of compensation going to countless artists, songwriters, labels and others who created the music. We are grateful to the FBI and the Department of Justice for its strong stand against Sharebeast and for recognizing that these types of illicit sites wreak major damage on the music community and hinder fans’ legitimate listening options.”

Fans of the website were not as enthusiastic Twitter:

Since Metallica successfully forced Napster to ban users in possession of the band’s music, such incidents of copyright enforcement have found music fans and the recording industry at odds. The moral implications of downloading pirated music, issues of fair artist compensation, accessibility of media, and an industry repeatedly accused of price gouging contribute to a murky picture of the right distribution model for new music. 

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