With a society continuously on the verge of going digital, digital piracy is a problem that has yet to be solved by much of the entertainment industry. However, YouTube has proven once again to be showing efforts against pirates online.
In the age of digital entertainment, audio-ripping has become one of the most prevalent forms of piracy in the recording industry today. A Financial Times study reported that internet users aged 16 to 24 have most likely used services like YouTube-MP3.org – but not on YouTube’s watch.
As per TorrentFreak, a proposed judgment can be found between multiple records labels such as Warner Bros., Sony Music, and UMG, and audio-ripping site YouTube-MP3.org. While the document did not have a judge’s signature, it did have a proposed settlement fee, and the domain of the site is to be transferred to a representative of the labels.
YouTube-MP3.org has become a major player in the piracy game after the RIAA declared it as the world’s biggest audio piracy site. The case against the site was filed as per the copyright violation claims of the audio labels mentioned above. According to them, YouTube-MP3.org was in fact responsible for almost 40% of piracy counts related to audio-ripping.
The site allows visitors to convert links from YouTube into audio files. According to the Verge, there are at least 300 songs that were “illegally-ripped” through the service. Among these were hits such as “Born This Way” by hit star Lady Gaga.
Despite the lack of a settlement fee, the complainants did seek damages of $150,000 for every case of proven infringement. Another argument in their complaint expressed that the website actually profited from the infringed content as it can collect revenue through redirecting ads.
Complaints from labels and the ability to upload audio and video files have become two things that YouTube has to continuously deal with as a service. This is why some users get to be extremely specific when labelling songs they are using for their uploaded videos, especially for non profit and personal purposes.