THE MUSIC INDUSTRY’S attitude to the internet has moved quite a long way in the last decade. Where once downloading the Best of Steps could result in a slap on the wrist from your ISP and, potentially, a lawyer, now that poor decision is just between you and your sense of taste.
Nowhere is that truer than on YouTube, where millions of songs are uploaded by record labels and musicians themselves, free to listen to. In the early 2000s, this would have felt like a trap, but the music industry really does seem to have resigned itself to the fact that people just aren’t paying £17.99 for an album in HMV any more. And not just because finding an HMV is something of a tricky task in itself.
But what YouTube and the music industry does have a problem with is you listening to this music away from YouTube. Plenty of sites exist that promise to strip videos of their music for you to listen in portable MP3 form – but all of a sudden, a bunch of the big players have simply stopped working.
As TorrentFreak reports, the likes of Dlnowsoft, Mp3-youtube.download and Onlinevideoconverter all display various error messages when you try to use them on YouTube. Using the tools on other sites, such as Vimeo, continues to work.
With the nature of these sites, you would imagine a workaround will be found soon, only for YouTube to extinguish that before the whole cycle starts again. In the past, other sites have been beaten through the courts, but that feels a somewhat outdated approach on a global internet where most iffy sites are geographically placed beyond the reach of copyright holders.
Still, as long as people are trying to listen to tracks without the ads and the right holders getting their cut, expect the whole song and dance to continue.