Muxtape, the awesome yet clearly copyright-infringing online music sharing service, has been closed down due to pressure from the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).
The front page of Muxtape.com currently shows a short note that reads: "Muxtape will be unavailable for a brief period while we sort out a problem with the RIAA."
Muxtape was clearly hosting and playing music that its users had not obtained legally, despite asking each of its many users to claim otherwise (ie to pretend that they really HAD bought the tracks they were uploading to their online muxtapes).
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Copyright first, fun last
Muxtape's has posted the following update on its blog:
"No artists or labels have complained. The site is not closed indefinitely. Stay tuned. Beta users of Muxtape For Bands: you are unaffected by this outage."
The Electronic Frontier Foundation's senior intellectual property attorney, Fred von Lohmann had formerly told CNet that Muxtape could only scrape by if it did not reach critical mass, and was on good legal ground, both in principle and on paper.
The site is currently down, which suggests to TechRadar that von Lohmann's prophecy is coming true.
Unless Muxtape has some watertight legal argument to hit back at the RIAA, that is, in which case we'll be bringing you further news soon. For now, we mourn the passing of a cool online music sharing service.