The premise of Grooveshark was always a little iffy, and at numerous times in their history the recording industry has agreed. But when Universal, Sony, and Warners decided that enough was enough, largely down to Grooveshark not actually licensing their music but still making it available, they sent their legal dogs in for the kill. And with the potential threat (more like absolute certainty) of being found guilty of sharing almost 5000 unlicensed tracks with possible fines in the region of three-quarters of a billion dollars, Grooveshark has shut up shop, wiped everything clean, and handed over all their stuff to the courts, and in doing so has avoided any fines at all. Thus Grooveshark is official over.
This statement, and last ever word from Grooveshark is from their site, and it’s an image rather than actual words:
Now it would be all too easy for me to tear apart the words above it an exercise of literary evisceration, but it would serve no purpose. All you need to know is that Grooveshark is over, and there are considerably more legal ways to discover and play music out there, something that some VirtualDJ customers are about to find out.
VDJ ContentUnlimited user? Read This
A key part of a DJ’s existence is having access to heaps of music, and for a growing number, video too. Enter VirtualDJ’s ContentUnlimited service, where for a varying amount of monthly cash you can get said access to a world of content, hence the name. The problem here for some is that a lot of that content was supplied by Grooveshark, which obviously leaves a gaping hole in their paid-for service, one that Atomix is trying to plug ASAP. In the meantime, CU users should check this statement on the VirtualDJ user forum for more detail.
UPDATE: There’s a fresh statement from Atomix:
For the past few years, Atomix Productions has been in contract with Grooveshark, who took care of the hosting and licensing of the catalog used in our service ContentUnlimited Audio.
Following the lawsuit brought against Grooveshark by some music labels, Grooveshark management assured us that a settlement was being reached and that everything was ok.
Last Saturday, we were shocked to discover that this was apparently not the case, and that Grooveshark was convicted of willfully hosting a small number of tracks on which they didn’t acquire the proper licensing, and were consequently shut down.
The lawsuit concerned a very small number of tracks (less than 5 thousand out of 15 million), so it’s very unlikely that ContentUnlimited customers ever played a track that was not properly licensed.
Nonetheless, we immediately removed Grooveshark from our catalog, and momentarily limited our ContentUnlimited Audio service (and made sure that we are not charging anyone anymore for this service until a proper replacement is in place).
To avoid any such surprise in the future, we are now working with some specialized companies, to get licensing deals directly from the labels.
We are trying our best to restore the full service as soon as possible, while still making sure that now and in the future, our users will get a high-quality catalog, fully licensed and legal, and that the copyright holders are properly compensated.
In the meantime, you can follow Grooveshark’s parting advice and go check out other sources of legally licensed music.