RIAA Not Backing Down on the Fight Against YouTube-Ripping Platforms

By Bill Toulas / October 29, 2020

The war between YouTube ripping tools and websites and the RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) is not nearing an end any time soon, as the organization that represents music firms has just obtained two subpoenas targeting 40 websites. A couple of days back, we reported about the removal of YouTube-DL from GitHub and also a lawsuit submitted by the ‘Yout’ ripping platform accusing the RIAA of DMCA abuse.

Long story short, the YouTube ripping community maintains that not everyone is breaching copyrights as not all users are interested in downloading music clips from the video platform. Many want to download unlicensed or unprotected audio for archiving or referencing reasons, like journalists seeking to confirm or back a statement, for example. So, it’s clear that legitimate use will become impossible if all ripping tools are taken down.

The RIAA pays no consideration to these claims, maintaining that tools like YouTube-DL are specifically made for pirating. They believe that the chances for other use case scenarios are far too slim to constitute anything else other than an excuse for enabling pirates to continue doing their thing, causing damages to creators and distributors.

Now, the organization is targeting the following domains, supported by Cloudflare and Namecheap:

The purpose of the two subpoenas is to obtain the identities of the individuals who operate these websites. The question is, what information Namecheap and Cloudflare could be holding. If something useful is shared with the RIAA, we expect to see the furthering of the legal action, mainly through the request of damage compensations and permanent injunctions.

There’s a mix of site types in the subpoenas, including file hosting platforms like “anonfiles.com,” torrent indexers like “1337x.to,” and generally websites that aren’t necessarily focused on music piracy.

However, there is also the worst of the kind when it comes to music piracy, which is unreleased audio clip marketplaces. “Thesource.to,” for example, is one of the most sophisticated of the breed, featuring automation tools that make the transactions between buyers and sellers quicker.

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