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Cut the music: Police bust illegal karaoke website

They were hosting a large number of copyrighted files.

Image: Shutterstock/Syda Productions

Updated 6.15pm

POLICE IN THE United Kingdom have shut down an illegal karaoke website.

The BitTorrent site was seen to direct its users to a catalogue of tens thousands of copyrighted music files. These were found to contain “the latest chart music and karaoke hits”.

A 46-year-old man has been arrested as part of the operation by police in Dewsbury, a town in West Yorkshire in the north of England.

The website was being hosted within the United Kingdom.

Service

The website offered users a service where they were able to download music on the provision that they “seeded” files – meaning they would have to upload any file they downloaded so others could have access to it as well.

Anyone who downloaded files and failed to seed them for more than 24 hours was found to be a ‘Hit and Run’ and had their account disabled.

Users were also able to purchase premium memberships of the website for between £5 and £90.

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Piracy 

The arrest effort involved anti-piracy group Performing Rights Society (PRS) for Music.

Speaking about the case, head of litigation, enforcement and anti-piracy with the PRS for Music, said, “the livelihoods of song-writers represented by PRS for Music, both within the UK and internationally, and of all those who contribute to our rich and diverse creative community, are underpinned by fair licensing and the protection of copyright.”

This comes as part of an ongoing effort by police in the region to combat music piracy.

Originally published 4.04pm

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