A popular stream-ripping Website has been taken out after a legal battle with the RIAA.
YouTube-MP3.org, alleged to be run by a German company and owned by Philip Matesanz, was sued by a coalition of major record labels lin 2016 and will be shuttered after a settlement was reached in a Californian court late last week.
Through the agreement, Matesanz will hand over an undisclosed sum to the plaintiffs, which include Capitol Records, Warner Music Latina and Sony Music Entertainment, and ownership of the site’s domain would transfer to a party of the RIAA’s choosing. The parties, however, will bear their own fees and costs for the legal action.
Also, Matesanz will be “permanently restrained” from running a stream-ripping platform or from engaging in copyright infringement involving the majors’ works or from operating a domain with a name similar to “YouTube-MP3.”
Stream-ripping has fast emerged as copyright owners’ enemy No. 1.
According to a recently-published report, stream-ripping grew by more than 140% in the years from 2014 to 2016, when nearly 500,000 occurrences were recorded. It’s considered the most prevalent form of music piracy in the U.K., accounting for almost 70% of all music-specific infringements. Stream-ripped files can be created with apps, websites, plug-ins and specially-developed software and, once saved, can be played offline on any digital device.
YouTubeMP3.org boasted more than 60 million unique users per month, according to reports, and was targeted by the recording industry as a “chief offender” for illegal stream-ripping of tunes from YouTube.