Someone Claiming to Be a Former Grooveshark Employee Says He's Behind the Site's Clones
The internet coders keeping the Grooveshark name alive in the news have struck again. Weeks after the actual -- and notorious -- music streaming site was downed by the RIAA, and following a series of clones operating on various domains, a person claiming to be a former employee has lashed out in writing.
In a letter posted in full at Digital Music News, a person going by "gs_forever" makes a reference to RIAA president Cary Sherman, saying "that old fart making $1.6 mil has no fucking idea what he's up against." The typo-riddled post claims the recording industry is "busy suing" one Grooveshark "clone" while another has been live for 10 days. "So when they get to that I already have the next one ready to go -- see how this works? Always one step aheahd, because when you shut down li I aleady have 12 more in my back pocket. And that's just the layer you can see."
Following the closure of Grooveshark.com, "clones" with country codes like .io, and .vc emerged and were shut down. The current live site that "gs_forever" refers to is groovshark.li, which is identical to previous iterations. But there's a problem with the writer's claim of being a former employee. As previously reported by tech site BGR.com, the new Groovesharks are actually clones of a site called MP3Juices.se, an MP3-based search engine with identical copyright pages, privacy policies and MP3 catalogs.
In previous missives, a developer going by the pseudonym "Shark" had claimed responsibility for the clones and had a habit of saying defiant things like "You will not stop us" and "I promise you this is not even close to being its end." By comparison, "gs_forever" exudes similar bravado, all-capsing "and just so I can be 100% clear: GROOVESHARK WILL NEVER DIE! I'm gonna make sure of that."
Now that it seems reasonably clear that Shark and gs_forever are probably the same person, or partners in some way, what else did they have to say about those responsible for the original's closure?
The author of the letter refers to "3 guys" (major label heads) that "decided that we should be killed while Spotify and rdio and Youtube lived." He says that music industry power players "decided that gs was the bad guy because we didn't want to pay the $20 million to line their pockets and they didn't think we could do an I.P.O -- so we were USELESS to them even though we were helping 1000s of artists every day."
The letter goes on to name-check two of the three major label CEOs, and laments the demise of Grooveshark's artist-helping analytics hub Beluga. "You see it's all who wants to play ball with (Sony's) Doug Morris and (UMG's) Lucian Grainge, and if you won't pay $20 mil you're on the shit list -- even though we had tons of indie local artists that had nothing to do with any of that but now get NO benefit whatsoever now. We wanted to help out but only if it was actually helping someone not just 3 guys at the top."
As previously reported, Grooveshark.com went offline earlier this month and its owners apologized for their "serious mistake" in failing to secure the appropriate licenses for the trove of copyrighted music found on the service.
While the letter (found here) is worth a look, the lively discussion in DMN's comments section is even better. Here's one reader asking the letter's author to release all his Grooveshark-related code to the public: