AfterDawn: Tech news

BearShare settles for $30M, then bought by iMesh

Written by Jari Ketola @ 07 May 2006 2:21 User comments (51)

BearShare settles for $30M, then bought by iMesh Free Peers Inc., the distributors of BearShare file sharing software, has agreed to pay the recording industry a sum of 30 million dollars to avoid potential copyright lawsuits. They also agreed to shut down their service and refrain from operating online music or film download services.
Free Peers was one of the seven P2P companies to receive a letter from the RIAA last year. The companies were warned that if they did not close down their services, they might be facing legal actions. i2Hub and WinMX shut down their services since then, and Grokster was sued and settled for $50m. Warez P2P, Limewire, eDonkey and SoulSeek haven't taken any action thus far.

Following the settlement with the recording industry, BearShare's assets, including the domain name and list of BearShare users, were sold to iMesh, which has had it's share of problems with RIAA in the past.

The Recording Industry Association of America praised the ruling made last year by the Supreme Court in the Grokster case. "The (Supreme) Court's decision helped pave the way for this exciting and ongoing transformation of the digital music marketplace," said RIAA's general counsel Steven Marks in a statement. "This is another important step in that evolution."


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51 user comments

17.5.2006 14:28

All I can say is another one bites the dust. The only other question is whos next in the line of pointless lawsuits.

27.5.2006 14:47

No offence but who in the blue hell cares. Who really used that program anyways? Torrents, Newsgroups and reincode groups are the way to go.

37.5.2006 14:51

It was all good while it lasted. Maybe they [RIAA] should spend time doing things like helphing the poor and stuff instead of wasting their time and money.

47.5.2006 15:49

Can't these P2P's just keep on changing names to avoid lawsuits?

57.5.2006 15:56

Whenever a P2P gets huge like Bearshare or Napster or whatever else did it becomes a huge target. The only good thing is there are always small upstart P2Ps that are always around that people can go to.

67.5.2006 18:32

eh anyhtign with centrlized severs is a target,THe torrents live and untill they can make the showing of info illagle then BT will live on.

77.5.2006 19:27

godammit it pisses me off so much, we have starvation, babies dying in the streets, and some peoples biggest concern is if there is media piracy, who gives a fuck seriously?

87.5.2006 22:41

@thekingo In a meritocracy/capitalistic system, most companies are individualistic in the sense they are self-interested and greedy. They don't care about people dying in the streets, let's face it. That's why we live in a democracy, where, we don't have to put with crap like this, there is a "potential for people power" and if you aren't happy about something, write congress. The first 1000 may go ignored, the first 10000 too, the first 100000 probably not, and then million and so forth. The government is there to serve the people, the second amendment, the right to bear arms, was issued just in case the government became a tyranny. P2P's are hardly worth the mention, but apparently Hollywood is losing a centillion infinity dollars, that's why their actors, production companies are going bankrupt...yea right. How much does an A list celebrity make? 20 million a million, how much did Titanic make, close to 1 billion dollar...And they make it seem like a serious issue after all these earnings? How much do foreigners make in sweatshops? Pennies an hour...

98.5.2006 00:21

this is great because bearshare contained viruses and bad download links and mostly links from mexico only so no offense im glad to see that stupid software gone

108.5.2006 03:17

Warez P2P, Limewire, eDonkey and SoulSeek haven't taken any action thus far.
And it's these (barring soulseek) that I don't want to see crushed by the RIAA's pointlessism.

118.5.2006 03:44

Bear Share was full of spyware anyway and should have been sued for ruining people's computers

128.5.2006 08:27

Too true, like Kazaa before it.

138.5.2006 09:27

hot_ice since when do we live in a democracy? Public rule was shot down by the elites tog et bush into office if thats not good enough for you look at poltics on a whole what we have is a Working Republic to bad its like all the older politic and govermental systems....if you aint rich or elite your pretty much fodder.

148.5.2006 10:42

If you ain't part of the MAFIAA or work for starforce you're fodder.

158.5.2006 11:00

sammorris Starforce jsut lost Edios,if they dont bring back basic CD checks then they will be dead within 2 or 3 years.

168.5.2006 11:02

Eidos too? Hmm, fair point then. But until they are crushed, we have to live under their fragile remains. Heretic I may be, but go securom!

178.5.2006 11:15

sammorris it was EA or edios,either way all it takes is one alrge dev to say enough is enough,I dont mind CD checks Sec rom 7 works great works fine on my USB boxed DVD RW,sure it kinda stays in the system after you uninstall the game but hell comapred to clawing and nawing and courpting of hardware and the OS its perfect ><

188.5.2006 12:50

Securom I like because it's strong and keeps the illegal folks out but doesn't let viruses in. Are you sure it's Eidos? It looks like they're still involved to me. EA, were they ever involved?

198.5.2006 13:21

nuts it was Ubi Mmmmmm they might not be big enough to hurt Starforce...*sigh* I was thinking they were but meh comapred to EA or edios....mmmm *sigh*

208.5.2006 13:37

Nah, Ubisoft and Eidos. That's still a pretty impressive boycott. If they keep it up, who knows!

218.5.2006 14:37

I use an older version of Bearshare and it does not have any problems. But if they are going to go "offline", anyone have other program sugestions? Bearshare and Limewire are the only 2 programs I've ever used and now don't know where to turn. This RIAA hammer and sickle needs to be taken down!

228.5.2006 16:25

Maybe you should seriously consider the torrent scene.

238.5.2006 22:34

Quick novel idea..... maybe... buy your media? I dont know exactly when we decided we were the music industries police, but we have created some sort of a "its ok for us to be criminals but not them" so stealing from them is justified by them overcharging you? Im not trying to preach to everyone but the arguement is kinda out of hand. Both sides of this are very very wrong. They should not be limiting our use of media, I want to rip my own MP3s and I am going to do it regardless. Then you have the people that say "well if it was priced at X I wouldnt be downloading for free" come on.... wake up and stop lying about it. Youre a thief and even if the tracks were .01 you would still steal them. Itunes may have draw backs but it is a VERY viable option. Sure you have to burn it and rip it to get MP3s and sure its only 128kbps tracks, but ITS ONLY $1 per track! You can go buy a single for $1 and youre saying that is too much? Stop thinking with your asses and actually fess up to what you are truly doing, you are stealing and that makes you a thief. Don't justify, just admit it. At one point I had to admit it to myself, then I started just buying CDs again. They're cheap when they fire come out anyway. I bought the new Tool, Pearl Jam, and Godsmack for 9.99 each just last week. I think I got a damn good deal for easily 3 hours of music. Just my thoughts, flame me all you want, but deep inside you know you're wrong. Ludikhris

249.5.2006 00:06

Trouble is, buying an album of 100 songs for $50+ when only $10 is actually going to the artists seems almost as corrupt as downloading them for free.

259.5.2006 08:39

One reason I like to download one or even two songs off a album is for a sample. MOST of the time, if I like the music, I'll go out and buy the CD to add to my collection (I OWN over 400+ CD's, which I have purchaced over the years.) I hate going out and paying even $10 for a new CD to get it home or into my car to find out that the only song on the album that is any good was the one that the local radio station plays over and over on the air FOR FREE! Ludikhris and sammorris both have good points, but if I choose to burn one of MY CD's for a friend and GIVE it to them, does that make me a "Robin Hood"? If so, Jolly be me!!! The recording companys are the ones making all the money and the Artist get such a small fraction, that my friends, is what is not right about!!! Luck to all!!!

269.5.2006 11:21

Yeah, absolutely. I agree with all of that, flyingv.

279.5.2006 18:35

Very much agreed. It is not right what the music industry does to their artists. Unfortunatly that alone still doesnt justify downloading music. It's not quite logical to think "They are not paying the artist enough, so I will steal from both the company and the band." I do see the problem, and hope an answer appears, but rampant piracy is not the answer we are looking for. They do need to fix the model they use for selling media. Too often artists are allowed to package crap for $10 a piece and sell it to consumers yes. Im not sure exactly why they don't have a better method of sampling music. For instance online direct stream perhaps? That would probably work, of course some people will capture the stream, but removing all piracy is impossible. I evern, (accepting that it is theft) download a few songs when new albums come out for the purchase of sampling. Its mostly for new artists which often times can be really sketchy when one good single comes out. If its good stuff I go out and buy the CD, if it sucks it usually gets removed from my PC for room for other good media. My main point is not that downloaders are evil thieves and we need to stop them, its that people should stop trying to justify what they are doing and take responsibility for what they are doing. As I age, I am trying to take more responsilibity myself. Ludikhris

2810.5.2006 01:39

True, but how do you go about donations that actually get to people these days?

2910.5.2006 07:12

Thank-you for seeing my point! Everyone seems to be getting ripped off and no one wants to take the blame. Ludikhris has a good point. If there was a better way to sample the music, more people would be less likely to "steal" the artist music but the recording industry is still the big theif! And, as also stated, some would still find a way to record the downstream anyway. I am a musician and it seems to be a no win situtation whichever way you go. Everyone seems to be getting screwed!!! Luck to all!!!

3010.5.2006 08:50

And look who's screwing everyone, the big names and the authorities!

3110.5.2006 11:14

ummm bad treatment of artists wow thats a new one lol some artists are but they are small time most of the time the larger artists dont really suffer they are just greedy pricks really. Look how much money someone like britney spears has etc. Alot of these idiots that complain about problems with record companies do not know how to manage their money is a big fact. In retrospect someone had to of originally bought the cd to get the song or a single. if they wanted to cut down on piracy in general they would make stuff more readily affordable to the general public and artists wouldnt be worth close to f'ing 40 million or so =/

3210.5.2006 11:17

the problem even downloading to sample is becoming a problem which in fact is what most people do quite often they keep a song mabye but i mean come on a single might cost a dollar if they miss out on a dollar from a few people woop dee doo most of these artists are quite rich or worth alot of money.

3310.5.2006 11:22

Thing is, all those little one dollars add up.

3410.5.2006 13:03

Let's face it, everyone is in it for the money. The artist, the music companies, etc. It doesn't matter who gets the larger cut, what matters, is how to distribute their music to the common populace. And that, I definetely disagree with.

3510.5.2006 13:48

hot_ice you know Itunes is nice but sicne they have not made them simple normal MP3s I wont bite simpley becuse I like mabye 1 or 2 new songs a year and thats since 99 or 95... >> so blah since I downlaod so little,and the japanase tracks I am after they are makeing money hand over fist (you think the US moive or music industy has it made look at japans anime indusrty 30$ for a 2 ep DVD,20-80 ish for a CD or a set)

3610.5.2006 14:24

We create it and someone else always comes along and does it cheaper and sometimes even better. Luck to all!!!

3710.5.2006 18:12

One reason I like to download one or even two songs off a album is for a sample. MOST of the time, if I like the music, I'll go out and buy the CD to add to my collection
we've all heard this line over and over... but it's true and i understand your situation. on the contrary, i dont buy music, and not implying that i illegally aquire it but trade it.. legally! ;)

3812.5.2006 04:18

The torrent scene, as mentioned, is the sure fire way around the previous norm of retreiving software, movies, and mp3's. Who is still downloading movies by chance? It's just easy to use AnyDVD to make an "archived" copy. I see both points as well, "I download it, I've stolen it", "Compensate the artist, or the record labels for that matter." What is a music CD actually? It's merchandise placed on the shelf with a retail price tag on it. Now, think about that for a moment. With that, think about the concept of burning a copy for a friend. With that in mind, the world is going to become a self-centered, money hog, as far as the merchandisers go. Here's a scenario. A family has three brothers, each of which are about 3 years of age apart. The tradition in many families is to pass the clothes down from brother to brother as each one gets older and taller. A pair of pants that fits the oldest brother now, will probably fit the 2nd oldest brother in the coming years, as the eldest brother moves on to a different size. Now, consider the Ipod issue as well. You've filled it slam full of Mp3's, and want to give it away to a friend, or even sell it. According to recent news and court battles, the Ipod makers want a piece of the pie, and don't want you to give away that device, as well as, the RIAA says "that's a no no, you can't do it." So, are parents to fork out additional money to Levis, Jordache, Wrangler, and even Dockers when it comes to them passing down clothes from sibling to sibling as they get older? Is Ford, Pontiac, Chevrolet, Buick, and the rest of the bunch going to start raising chaos when parents give a currently owned vehicle to their children once they get the age to drive? It is stated in the law books that once an item of yours is taken or given or expressed "outside your residence", it's the property of the public eye. In comes to play restaurants that can stop you from smoking the pack of cigs you purchased yourself. Schools can stop you from wearing certain clothes with particular logos on them. But, you bought the items. Thus, the music you hear in your purchased home stereo is yours. It's up to you how you capture it (with just the ear, or with the ear and a means to record it). Your social security number is the prime example of this. It's yours, you earned via your being born. However, once you use it, the company that you gave it to can sell it to whom ever they wish. The same goes with your home address and e-mail address. In summary, the air is yours to breathe in and out. Cyberspace is an entity of air to which media and other information is free to roam. Consider both zones an instant lottery. You are being provided items up for grab, and you aren't violating anyone's personal space to take them, thus, what law are you breaking? For the one trying to base the point "face it, you are stealing", tell me that if you are walking down the street, and someone has tossed loads of 100 dollar bills out of a building, that you'll just keep your hands in your pocket.

3912.5.2006 08:34

phaser1 Good arguement. Are you a lawyer? Should be. You seem to have this thing covered from all angles. Good one!!! jAmEsTn We all have to agree that we are all doing the same thing. If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it's probally a duck!!! LOL with your "Legal trading". Have some type of arrangement with the major music industry? Let us all in on how you do it!!!

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 12 May 2006 @ 8:40

"...Just another brick in the wall" -Pink Floyd.
Please, don't become another "Brick!!!"
You have a brain, use it!!!

4012.5.2006 09:35

Artist suffering???? Yeah I see them suffering with the lack of storage space for their car collection. Due to the uncomfortable situations in the Mansion.

4112.5.2006 09:57

Snatched 0_o "and soon he was banned"

4212.5.2006 12:41

If and only IF p2p's get shut down and we HAVE to buy music get it from russian sites. songs @ 10 cents! They don't have to pay royalties to music industry only artists!

4312.5.2006 17:16

I would download music from bearshare myself, yes a petty thief. The thing with me is I listen a couple times then it just sits on my computer and uses up space. Its hearing the latest release and wanting to hear a few other songs they might have. I bought my share of music and now it sits on a shelf collecting dust there. The way these artists really make it is with the concerts. We pay to here them play, wouldnt it be great if there was a cd of the show when you left (not in this lifetime). People download because of the $50 concert ticket and dont feel like paying more.

4412.5.2006 17:23

rokmsokm thats stilas illagle as getting it from P2P *L*

Copyright infringement is nothing more than civil disobedience to a bad set of laws. Lets renegotiate them.

Check out my crappy creations

4513.5.2006 07:39

Have they set up a date as to when they would shutdown the site? My version still is up and working just fine. LOL!!!

"...Just another brick in the wall" -Pink Floyd.
Please, don't become another "Brick!!!"
You have a brain, use it!!!

4613.5.2006 12:37

Well when you stop being able to connect to the P2P or when you see more crap search results you will know when to change your P2P :)

4713.5.2006 12:57

That sounds right. I'll use it until it goes down, but until then I'll keep on truckin'!!! Thanks!!! LOL!!!

4815.8.2006 10:26

The arguement that iTunes and the rest are making that songs from there sites cost the same as a track on a cd is a farce! Firstly there is the fact that when you do buy a CD you get a nice little case and a clever little booklet detailing the artist and often the lyrics. Now this is where most of the money on manufacturing CD's comes from, the rest is markup. Lets say this costs 15-20% of the actual cost of a CD [rerferring to the Babyshambles cd i bought th other day - thick booklet and sturdy cd case]. itunes selling tracks for 79p, thats 63p if we minus the 20% or so. Thats 16p profit on every track. Think of the thousands of tracks they sell each hour. Thats alot of money! Money which has been "stolen" from us in the form of a pretty little package. Remeber when you buy a CD you buy the packaging aswell. That's why i buy some albums but i do download some music aswell for exactly the same reasons as everyone else: I don't want to spend money on music! Yous may tell yourselves that you want to rebel and 'stick it to the man' but really you don't want to pay for it and thats you excuse. That's fine. I think it's disgusting that the artist gets exceedingly little, but that isnt a valid reason [for me anyway] not to buy CD's as i buy them for my own enjoyment, not to fund anyone else, although that may be the ultimate outcome. Think about it . . .

4929.9.2006 01:48

I'd like to say I switched off my P2P program to try Yahoo Music Jukebox and I'd say for the most part I am satisfied with it.

My main problems is:

There are still a few artists that I listen to who haven't signed on.
There's no fast way to ban edited music from your radio station.

I don't want to try Itunes cause of the DRM and I am not buying an Ipod. If when you bought a song from Itunes there was no DRM on it and you could burn it on as many CD's as you wanted, I would most certainly be doing it, in my area the only option for buying music (unless you want to buy online) is Wal Mart. Unfortunately they only sell edited music.

On a side note to the guy who says anyone who downloads music is a thief and all of that, what about the price fixing that is still going on by certain stores? Before Tunetown got demo'd, I went to buy a copy of Ten Thousand Fists and it was about 20 bucks! Also I was going to buy a copy of the Sickness and that was 17 or 18 bucks (an album that had been out for 5-6 years)!

At this point what options do we have to strike back against the RIAA? Politicians ignore us, so the only choice we have is to hit them where it hurts: the wallet. At least we have gotten some form of online (legal) media which would never have happened if the record companies hadn't been woken up to how much money they could make off it by the p2p users.

Spellcheck is a nice invention.
Using BitVomit hurts the swarm your in, get a decent client.

5029.9.2006 17:43

I have worked as a mobile DJ for 25 years finally hung up the cans I have 4,000 7" Vinyl Singles 400 12" Vinyl 2 to 300 Albums in Vinyl and joy of joy mid 90's the freakin' CD comes out not only had to buy new equipment also had to just about re-buy my major tunes for the disco. I have used imesh I used bershare I am still subscribing to Lime wire does this mean that for all the music on Vinyl that I copied on to CD on my Traxdata machine (that Cost me 390 UK about 600$us so how are record companies and artists been ripped off I agree with the coment abve there has been no clear guidance or collective thinking within the Music industry to "move with the times" they could of got us on the same Vinyl to cD Cd to MP3 P2P Blah if they priced it correctly and mde some consession they are greedy B.......s Like said aswell the fact that when CD replace Vinyl the production cost of the Artwork Jewel Case etc was considerably less than producing a say double album with Sleve and inserts and if your lucky Lyrics, and as an added bonus folks you can pay double for the manufacturing overhead reductions we have saved on,says the industry bunch of small minded short sited biggots take that to court.

5120.5.2011 19:19
Unverified new user

i mesh sould shut down like limewire

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