Music-streaming service Grooveshark has been permanently shut down. The service began in 2006, having users to upload whatever song they wished, allowing its 35 million users to stream the tracks for free. In 2011, music industry giants Universal, Warner, and Sony began legal actions to have the website stopped. Of the hundreds of thousands of songs available on the service, nearly 6,000 were found to have been personally uploaded by Grooveshark's CEO and CTO. Grooveshark's parent company, Escape Media could have been liable for up to $736 million in damages. According to re/code, a settlement was reached where no penalties would be paid, but the service would be shut down, the servers would be wiped clean of all music, and Grooveshark would urge music lovers to utilize legitimate, subscription services.
The following is the message shown to those who visit Grooveshark.com:
Dear music fans,
Today we are shutting down Grooveshark.
We started out nearly ten years ago with the goal of helping fans share and discover music. But despite [the] best of intentions, we made very serious mistakes. We failed to secure licenses from rights holders for the vast amount of music on the service.
That was wrong. We apologize.
As part of a settlement agreement with the major record companies, we have agreed to cease operations immediately, wipe clean all the data on our servers and hand over ownership of this website, our mobile apps and intellectual property, including our patents and copyrights.
At that time of our launch, few music services provided the experience we wanted to offer - and think you deserve. Fortunately, that's no longer the case. There are now hundreds of fan friendly, affordable services available for you to choose from, including Spotify, Deezer, Google Play, Beats Music, Rhapsody and Rdio, among many others.
If you love music and respect the artists, songwriters and everyone else who makes great music possible, use a licensed service that compensates artists and other rights holders. You can find out more about the many great services available where you live here:
It has been a privilege getting to know so many of you and enjoying great music together. Thank you for being such passionate fans.
Yours in music,
Your friends at Grooveshark
April 30, 2015
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