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Stream-ripping sites PickVideo, Video-download and Easyload cease operations

By | Published on Friday 15 June 2018

Internet

Stream-ripping remains a top piracy gripe of the music industry. The anti-piracy brigade sees websites that enable people to easily download permanent copies of content contained in streams, especially YouTube videos, as a top concern. So those brigaders will presumably be pleased to hear that several such sites seem to have ceased operations this week.

Having decided a couple of years ago that stream-ripping was now the piracy problem of the moment, the record industry took aim at one of the biggest stream-ripping sites in the world – YouTube-mp3.org – which ultimately shut itself down last year after being sued by the Recording Industry Association Of America.

The stream rippers themselves quickly jumped to rival sites, but the music industry has been busy putting legal pressure on many of those as well. Torrentfreak reports that, as a result, sites like PickVideo.net, Video-download.co and Easyload.co have now all ceased operations, citing either general concerns following the YouTube-MP3 action or actual cease and desist letters they have received from copyright owners.

PickVideo’s home page now reads: “We’re sorry to inform you that all downloading and conversion services have been disabled to comply with a ‘cease and desist’ request. Thank you to everyone who used PickVideo while it lasted”. Meanwhile Video-download.co says it has disabled its stream-ripping operations because of what happened to YouTube-mp3 “which was based in Germany (so are we)”.

Of course, there remain plenty more stream-ripping services just a Google search away and it remains to be seen how many of those can be pressured offline with mere threats of legal action. Some sites may feel they are based in a jurisdiction where actual litigation would be hard to pursue or they might fancy having a go at using the popular “but our service has legitimate uses” argument in court.

Ultimately download-based piracy is slowly slipping into decline anyway as consumers shift over to consuming music via streams rather than actual files stored on their devices. Although because free streaming services often don’t provide offline listening functionality (that often being the big selling point of premium accounts), some users still want the option to download tracks for when they don’t have a net connection or are out of mobile data.



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