Grooveshark Pulled From Android Market Over RIAA Letter
Today, Google booted the app from the Android Market in “a move that comes after some of the top music labels have accused the service of violating copyright law,” according to CNET’s Greg Sandoval.
Grooveshark differs fundamentally from other popular streaming music apps, like MOG or Rdio, in that it relies on users to upload music to its catalog, which can be streamed and downloaded from the app via either Amazon MP3 or the iTunes Store.
When Apple pulled the app from the App Store last August, we predicted that “the move is likely related to the lawsuit in which Universal Music [...] is suing Grooveshark for copyright infringement,” which turned out to be the case. Today’s removal from the Android Market seems to stem from a similar situation, in which a letter from the Recording Industry Association of America caused it to be pulled.
A Google spokesperson told CNET that “we remove apps from Android Market that violate our policies.”
The company provided a statement regarding its removal:
“It is our full intent to get Grooveshark for Android back into the Android Marketplace, and we haven’t received any specific information from Google about what in the developers’ terms of service, exactly, we need to address to be re-admitted to the marketplace-only that Google received a letter of complaint from the RIAA.
As a user-sourced service, like YouTube, Grooveshark complies speedily with all DMCA requests to make sure that we operate within the law and respect the wishes of content owners. Unlike Apple’s iPhone ecosystem, Android is an open platform, and Google is traditionally a supporter of DMCA-compliant services-indeed, Google itself relies on the DMCA for the very same protection that Grooveshark does.
Grooveshark works night and day to develop new successes in the music industry, as well as pay the many content partners with whom we work. The current unavailability of our app is taking money from the thousands of hard-working labels, artists, and content partners who benefit from a share of Grooveshark’s mobile subscription revenue. We look forward to working with Google to get our app reinstated.”
Last year’s issue with Universal wasn’t the first time it ran into problems either. In 2009, the company settled a lawsuit with music label EMI.