by Mike Masnick

Filed Under:
mp3s, search engine


Bogus 'Free' MP3 Download Site Going Away, Blaming Blogs For Wanting To Ruin Its Popularity

from the um,-right dept

Back at the end of August, we noted the ridiculous claims of an operation called "ZapTunes," which insisted that it was offering unlimited MP3 downloads for $25/month -- but with a "free" trial period (but one where you still had to hand over your credit card details). As we said at the time, nothing about the site sounded legit, despite its claims to the contrary. A little digging suggested that the site was actually just a search engine for MP3s, using (at least)'s database (which includes plenty of song listings that you can't download). $25 per month for a search engine that suggested you could access songs that simply weren't online (musicians who used saw their own unreleased tracks "listed" in the search engine)? Uh, yeah, right. On top of that, there were bizarre, unsubstantiated claims about $5 million in funding.

We also noted that the site was already being sued by EMI, and now (not surprisingly), the company has announced that it's shutting down the site in a week, with a bizarre and equally amusing press release, claiming that it was "angry music bloggers," who "despised the attention" the company got, who helped "ruin" the site's "popularity." Um. Yeah. Except none of that is true. If there were actually a site that offered this kind of deal, legally, tons of sites would report on it happily and encourage people to check it out. But this clearly was not such a site. The company claims it will be back, but, given that it couldn't substantiate any of its initial claims, I wouldn't hold my breath for that...

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  1. icon
    Karl (profile), 28 Oct 2010 @ 9:57pm


    This is the most ridiculous site I've seen since the one that claimed they "recreated" Beatles music by encoding it to MP3, thus didn't have to pay any licensing fees.

    There's a lot of funny stuff in Zaptunes' fine print, such as: does not own any copyrights or license to any music/artist/album/art work mentioned anywhere on this website.
    - From the footer of every page on their site

    And: does not provide any downloads from its servers. just enables its members to find free or paid music available on the Internet.
    - From their Terms of Use

    So, you're paying $25 per month for a search engine. Nice!

    There's a funny article at TorrentFreak called 13 Unlucky Reasons Why Zaptunes is Bullshit. It gets even funnier towards the end:
    Those unlucky enough to have given their details over already will see charges on their credit card account from [...]

    TrackYourPics is registered to an address in San Francisco, California. Google seems to think that location is a drain cover.

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