by Mike Masnick
Tue, Aug 19th 2008 5:59am
Ever since it launched, people have waited for the RIAA or its member record labels to go after Muxtape. The site allowed individuals to upload MP3s that they had and create a streaming "mixtape" of music. It was actually a pretty cool way to hear new music from individuals you trusted -- just like sharing mixtapes back in the 80s. You might think that, perhaps, the recording industry would recognize how successful mixtapes were back then in promoting certain bands, and wouldn't freak out about an online version. But, of course, this is the RIAA we're talking about. While the details aren't clear, Muxtape has shut itself down, claiming that it needs to get some stuff sorted out with the RIAA. There is always the possibility that it's doing this to get extra attention, but if we take the company at its word, then it seems likely that the usual pattern is happening. An RIAA label is demanding some ridiculous license fee, and threatening to sue if it doesn't get it. If it's a label like Warner Music, it's probably also demanding equity in the company. Either way, it will be interesting to see if Muxtape ever comes back, and what the details of its "resurrection" will actually be.
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