The audiogalaxy/RIAA suit has been settled,
June 17, 2002 4:25 PM   Subscribe

The audiogalaxy/RIAA suit has been settled, with the result being that all content on the audiogalaxy system is now "opt-in" by the original artist/copyright holders only with the rest filtered out (earlier story of the initial filing).
posted by mathowie (24 comments total)
You beat me to it, Matt. This is going to absolutely kill AG.
posted by Yelling At Nothing at 4:28 PM on June 17, 2002

The site is slashdotted right now for me, so here's the entire release:
RIAA, NMPA Reach Settlement With

Recording Industry Association of America, National Music Publishers’ Association Reach Settlement with

New York, NY, June 17, 2002 – The recording industry, music publishers and songwriters announced today that they have reached an out-of-court settlement with, the Napster-like clone, which requires Audiogalaxy to stop the infringement of copyrighted works on their peer-to-peer network.

The agreement follows a lawsuit filed in late May accusing Audiogalaxy of facilitating and encouraging widespread copyright infringement – a last resort step after repeated efforts to warn the firm of their liability were ignored or resulted in ineffective attempts to fix the problem. The suit was brought by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), on behalf of its member labels, and the National Music Publishers’ Association (NMPA), on behalf of the music publisher principals of its licensing affiliate, The Harry Fox Agency, Inc.

The settlement reached would allow Audiogalaxy to operate a "filter-in" system, which requires that for any music available, the songwriter, music publisher, and/or recording company must first consent to the use and sharing of the work. The other key provision of the agreement is for Audiogalaxy to pay the music publishers and recording industry a substantial sum based on Audiogalaxy's assets and interest in resolving this case quickly.

"We are pleased to settle this case quickly. This is a victory for everyone who cares about protecting the value of music," said Hilary Rosen, Chairman and CEO of the RIAA. "This should serve as a wake-up call to the other networks that facilitate unauthorized copying. The responsibility for implementing systems that allow for the authorized use of copyrighted works rests squarely on the shoulders of the peer-to-peer network."

"The message is clear – there is no place on the Internet for services that exploit creators' work without fair compensation," added Edward P. Murphy, President and CEO, NMPA. "Such services hurt creators and hurt the legitimate Internet businesses that wish to comply with the law and compensate the creators. The swift resolution of this matter is thus a double victory that creators and legitimate Internet businesses should join in hailing." (more), based in Austin, Texas, was one of the more heavily trafficked file-sharing websites.

The Recording Industry Association of America is the trade group that represents the U.S. recording industry. Its mission is to foster a business and legal climate that supports and promotes our members' creative and financial vitality. Its members are the record companies that comprise the most vibrant national music industry in the world. RIAA® members create, manufacture and/or distribute approximately 90% of all legitimate sound recordings produced and sold in the United States.

In support of this mission, the RIAA works to protect intellectual property rights worldwide and the First Amendment rights of artists; conduct consumer industry and technical research; and monitor and review - - state and federal laws, regulations and policies. The RIAA® also certifies Gold®, Platinum®, Multi-Platinum™, and Diamond sales awards, Los Premios De Oro y Platino™, an award celebrating Latin music sales.

The National Music Publishers’ Association, Inc., founded in 1917, works to protect and advance the interests of the music publishing industry. With over 900 members, the NMPA represents the most important and influential music publishing firms throughout the United States.

The Harry Fox Agency, Inc. provides an information source, clearing house and monitoring service for licensing musical copyrights, and acts as licensing agent for more than 27,000 music publisher principals, who in turn represent the interests of more than 160,000 songwriters. Besides the core business functions of licensing, collections and distribution of royalties, HFA conducts periodic record company and other user audits on behalf of its principals. HFA is the licensing affiliate of the National Music Publishers’ Association.
posted by mathowie at 4:29 PM on June 17, 2002

So, what's the download software of choice now? Gnucleus?
posted by dogwelder at 4:34 PM on June 17, 2002

I'm partial to either LimeWire or KazaaLite.
posted by benjh at 4:43 PM on June 17, 2002

Damn. I love(d) AG.
posted by artifex at 5:00 PM on June 17, 2002

Yeah, me too. One of the few P2P services that let you get anywhere with dialup.
posted by Yelling At Nothing at 5:04 PM on June 17, 2002

Bearshare 3.0 is about to be released with full Ultrapeer support (effectively unifying and broadening the Gnutella network even more). Grab the latest beta here, it's pretty slick.
posted by afx114 at 5:17 PM on June 17, 2002

Usenet is still great for high quality full cds. Though I'm having a hard time finding... please don't laugh... musicals. I listen to a wide variety of things, it's just once in a while, I have that Gilbert and Sullivan urge. So if anyone could direct me that way...
posted by geoff. at 5:31 PM on June 17, 2002

The current betas of Gnucleus have a few bugs -- such as trying to download from private IP addresses that you'll never connect to, and the binary distribution limiting you to a measly 3 Ultrapeer connections [which means you get very few results on searches], and another bug that makes download retries extremely slow -- but if you can put up with it and grit your teeth for the next beta to "evolve," it really does work pretty well overall.

A word to the wise, though: unless you have a nice, fast upstream speed, don't enable the "Become Ultrapeer" option on any variety of Gnutella software. It swamped my disgustingly disproportionate 128k upstream cap with only 60 clients clinging to me.
posted by majick at 5:35 PM on June 17, 2002

AG is now in the misspelling/name-mangling stage of things that napster went through. You can still find what you need there. But I doubt it will last much longer as a good source.
posted by Nauip at 5:35 PM on June 17, 2002

geoff., you obviously have a much, much better news server than most people have access to. Usenet binaries are all well and good, but completion on a great majority of servers is worse than merely abysmal; it's pitiful.
posted by majick at 5:40 PM on June 17, 2002

Usenet ain't bad if you use a premium server and are not too picky. But, ironically, the real deal is on IRC. Yep, back to the old days. Dalnet, Undernet and to a letter extent Efnet is where the goody are. Also there is a trick to get a song that is blocked with AG.
posted by kush at 6:26 PM on June 17, 2002

i couldn't get half the japanese songs i have were it not for their old system, which let you queue even songs that weren't available at the moment. bah.... oh wells, another program shall take it's place.
posted by lotsofno at 6:28 PM on June 17, 2002

kush - the trick doesn't seem to work anymore. when i tried it i got the same copyright restriction boilerplate. i wish i'd known about it earlier. guess it's gnutella time till the next big mp3 clearinghouse arises.
posted by artifex at 6:59 PM on June 17, 2002

the cuckoo againt music filesharing is futile. Let the kiddies download their tunes and let the parents buy them the censored version of eminem for x-mas. The resolve of the riaa only fuels the fire in the garage of another dude from michigan. My blackmarker and me thinks that money and music go together about as well as rival world cup fans. Professional engineers, studio owners and those who derive their subsitence from the business deserve all the compensation the market bears. Bling Bling execs, their contingencies, and well fed artists should be spanked for the materialistic reward they expect for their supposed toils. Writers pen for the poem, Dancers step for the rhythm, Musicians groove for the funk.
posted by jasondigitized at 7:06 PM on June 17, 2002

Awww... how am I going to get my "Gilles Peterson Worldwide" fix now, dammit :-( AG was the best, and I hope this works for them, but somehow I can't see it. I'd have been prepared to pay decent money for the current free service too.
posted by pascal at 7:24 PM on June 17, 2002

for those scoring at home it's--

every kid with a burner: 23394585757585050595857575
posted by tsarfan at 9:12 PM on June 17, 2002

geoff, maybe you should see about setting up a musicals newsgroup. I'd use it. There is a broadway group which is unused. I will admit that I've never seen any G&S posted anywhere (and I don't have any).
For me usenet fills the bill (using cable). I use newsfeeds mp3 server which has a retention of a month or more. But then I'm more interested in music that's been around a while.
posted by HTuttle at 9:28 PM on June 17, 2002

AG was always seemed the best for non-mainstream musical artists ...I never thought Kazaa/Morpheus even came close....This sucks. Found a loyt of great artists and bought a few CD's of my discoveries to boot.
posted by tdstone at 10:20 PM on June 17, 2002

i throw out another plug for emusic. $10 /month. unlimited downloads. why bother dealing with the filesharing nonsense at all when it's that cheap?
posted by dobbs at 12:11 AM on June 18, 2002

How are Audiogalaxy actually going to operate their new system? Does anyone have any information?

If you are an independent artist with no record or publishing deal, how are you now going to be able to get your music shared on AG? Will you have to fill in a form with every single track identifying the songwriter, performer, publisher and record company, and confirming your right to add the track to the service?

Oh and Pascal (cor, there's a name from the past...), you could try the new BBC Radio Player, which lets you stream any BBC Radio programme from the previous seven days.
posted by kerplunk at 3:07 AM on June 18, 2002

dobbs: Because all of emusic's stuff is encoded at 128kbps, and much of it is encoded badly. I signed up for the trial membership, and cancelled 4 days later.
posted by at 6:16 AM on June 18, 2002

kerplunk: yeah, I know about that - but I could get those shows as 136K VBR MP3s off of AG. RealAudio is not the same, and not just because I'm a Mac OS X user.

Hmmm... do we know each other? CIX?
posted by pascal at 7:05 AM on June 18, 2002

i throw out another plug for emusic.

Heh, it's with amusement that I note the following announcement on their site:
EMusic is currently undergoing a major technology upgrade to increase performance in order to add significant new content and new features. Although we try to minimize disruptions in our service, this upgrade requires us to take the site off-line for several hours beginning at 7:00 am Pacific Standard time.
Yeah, an upgrade to handle the tens of thousands of new users coming from AG...

On an unrelated note, I'm a paid gold member of AG through September. I wonder if they'll refund a portion of my subscription fee since clearly the service is changing from what I expected when I signed up. I love(d) AG. I could *always* find music, no matter how obscure. Pizzicato 5 covering "Girl from Ipanema" for example.

My MO was to find a new artist that I never heard of, either a mention online or MTV's 120 Minutes, download a couple of songs to see if they were consistently good and then go buy a CD. I've bought more CDs in the last year because of AG than in the last three.
posted by warhol at 8:41 AM on June 18, 2002

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