Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The RIAA's latest victims: Muxtape and Pandora

Playlist-Assembling Site Muxtape Shuts Down To Sort Out RIAA Issues
You had to see this one coming. Less than six months after becoming the hipster time-wasting destination of choice, popular music-sharing site Muxtape was suddenly offline on Monday. Fans of the site — which allowed users to assemble mixtape-like playlists online that were available for others to stream — were greeted by the message, "Muxtape will be unavailable for a brief period while we sort out a problem with the RIAA."

The site did not offer further elaboration of its troubles with the Recording Industry Association of America — the trade group that lobbies on behalf of the recording industry, and the force behind thousands of lawsuits against individuals for illegally uploading music. A post on the Muxtape Tumblr site explained, "No artists or labels have complained. The site is not closed indefinitely. Stay tuned." MTV was unable to reach a Muxtape spokesperson at press time. RIAA spokesperson Jonathan Lamy declined to comment. ...

A report on suggested that perhaps the RIAA noticed the increasing popularity of the site and predicted it would tip into the same realm as some of the streaming radio services that have recently been ordered to pay hefty licensing fees in order to continue operating. ...

Speaking of those fees, one of the most popular online music discovery sites,, is on the verge of going under because of the high cost of licensing fees for Internet radio stations. The fees, which do not apply to terrestrial radio, have caused a number of popular online radio stations to shut down or consider going out of business.
I'm not hip enough to be familiar with Muxtape, but I listen to Pandora frequently. It's a shame that these services are being extorted out of business. Can WPKN's audio stream be far behind?

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