Feeds

MP3sparks.com downed by links to Russian cybercrime gang

iTuneski jumps in bed with spammy host

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

MP3sparks is owned by Russian outfit Media Services, and was named AllofMP3 until a Russian court ruling over unpaid royalties forced a rebrand in July 2007.

Media Services' latest decision to deal with AbdAllah leaves it open to renewed allegations by rights holders that it is a criminal element itself.

Media Services could not be reached today.

The firm claims copyright legitimacy via a royalties-collecting society called "Rightholders Federation for Collective Copyright Management of Works Used Interactively". Western collecting bodies do not recognise the organisation.

The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry has waged a sustained campaign against Media Services' alleged piracy on behalf of the record industry. In June 2006 it said of MP3sparks' forerunner AllofMP3:

Unlike all the legitimate sites, it does not pay artists or copyright holders so it is effectively stealing from those who create music. Like most things that appear to be too good to be true, AllofMP3.com is not what it seems.

AllofMP3 was reckoned to be the second most popular digital music retailer in the UK market, after Apple's iTunes. Data on MP3sparks is not available.

Both AllofMP3 and MP3sparks won acclaim from digital music fans for more than the rock-bottom $0.20 per track fees, however. The service also offers a much wider choice of encoding and higher bitrates, and has never bothered tethering music to particular devices with DRM.

News of the service pitching up in a known source of online scams leaves ethically-minded digital music fans with a dilemma. If their ISP can still access MP3sparks, should they continue to use the site despite its shady choice of friends?

On the other hand, many customers view their purchases as a protest to the mainstream record industry - which has made its own share of moral missteps - to catch up technically.

For now, the balance lies with the individual's conscience*. ®

*Not for customers of Canadian ISP Rogers, it seems. Unconfirmed reports say it is blocking MP3sparks independently.

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
Arrr: Freetard-bothering Digital Economy Act tied up, thrown in the hold
Ministry of Fun confirms: Yes, we're busy doing nothing
Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov
Copyright law reforms will keep m'learned friends busy
Apple smacked with privacy sueball over Location Services
Class action launched on behalf of 100 million iPhone owners
US judge: YES, cops or feds so can slurp an ENTIRE Gmail account
Crooks don't have folders labelled 'drug records', opines NY beak
ONE EMAIL costs mining company $300 MEEELION
Environmental activist walks free after hoax sent share price over a cliff
UK government officially adopts Open Document Format
Microsoft insurgency fails, earns snarky remark from UK digital services head
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.