Music industry strikes back against YouTube stream-rippers

Major music studios have scored a major victory against so called stream-ripping services that enable web users to download the audio track from YouTube videos.

The YouTube-MP3 service, which makes it incredibly easy to download an MP3 version of the audio, has agreed to shut down as part of a proposed legal settlement.

The Germany-based site had allowed users to simply paste in a YouTube link in order to download the audio track.

The studios, including Sony and Warner Bros., had alleged YouTube-MP3 had profited from the copyright infringement by showing advertisements to visitors.

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TorrentFreak reports the domain name, YouTube-MP3.org, has been handed over to the RIAA, as part of the agreement. An undisclosed payment has also been made.

‘Illicit delivery of free music’

Lawyers for the record labels had argued: “Through the promise of illicit delivery of free music, Defendants have attracted millions of users to the [YouTube-MP3] website, which in turn generates advertising revenues for Defendants.”

The court order will prevent the site’s owner Philip Matesanz from “knowingly designing, developing, offering, or operating any technology or service that allows or facilitates the practice commonly known as streamripping.”

Given Google and YouTube’s revenues are now intrinsically linked to music streams, it’s a surprise YouTube itself hadn’t done more to combat the stream-ripping sites.

Have you used stream-ripping services in the past? Will YouTube-MP3 be missed? Share your thoughts @TrustedReviews on Twitter.