Google clamps down on YouTube-to-MP3 conversion site

19 Jun 2012

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Google intends to rain legal hell on a popular website that converts YouTube videos into MP3s because it violates YouTube’s terms and conditions.

YouTube-MP3.org attracts 1.3m visitors a day and uses the YouTube API to allow users to convert a YouTube URL into a standalone MP3 file they can put on portable music players and smartphones.

While ironically YouTube is one of the world’s biggest sources of free music, the act of transforming videos into MP3s apparently breaches YouTube’s terms of service.

Kids today

According to TorrentFreak, these music conversion services are wildly popular with today’s smartphone-toting teens.

However, a letter has been sent to YouTube-MP3.org warning of legal consequences if it continues to breach its terms of service.

According to YouTube’s terms of service, attempts to isolate or modify content available through YouTube’s API is forbidden.

The move could be seen as a way of assuaging the concerns of record labels who use YouTube to actively market music, as opposed to having it ripped and burned.

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Editor John Kennedy is an award-winning technology journalist.

editorial@siliconrepublic.com