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That didn’t take long. Yesterday we received an email from our excellent host provider that our site was being taken offline. The reason? Soundgarden’s legal representation had sent them a copyright infringement complaint with a full list of material they wanted taken down. In an effort to get the site back up we quickly took down the material. Here’s what I wrote on our Facebook page yesterday:
While it is clearly within their legal right (and valid) to file a copyright infringement claim against us, it’s lame they did so to a site only hosting b-sides and fan recorded bootlegs. Why? Because our intent, of course, is to provide you gremmies access with hard to find material that bands have left growing old and dusty in their attics. We’ve no interest in making money, nor taking it out of their pockets. We believe the material we hosted does not have a material affect on Soundgarden’s livelihood. We understand their rights to protect their art, but we admonish their (and any bands) Orwellian approach. It makes us appreciate our relationship with @Pearl Jam, @StarAnna, @BenHarper, and @GlenHansard even more.If you became a fan of gremmie.net under the pretense we’d host Soundgarden material, then goof and I feel bad. We truly do. We’ll miss you if you decide to leave us, well everyone except Junior Moore, but if you decide to stick around we’re sure you’ll find something worth your while on the site.
This posting, along with another on our Facebook page quickly devolved into a music piracy debate . It’s an argument as old as the internet. No matter where you plant your flag, both sides make sensible points. Here’s a good version of the debate. Boil it down to this: gremmie.net collides head on with the tenets of music piracy. We are able to operate insofar as an artist is willing to allow their b-sides, demos, and fan-recorded bootlegs to be available to their fans. Right or wrong, that’s our market. If that makes us pirates, then we’re pirates. If it makes us saints, then we’re saints. We’re not here to tell you what to think; we’re here to give you gremmies as much hard to find, out of print music we can wrangle.
But we’re back now. You can view the complaint here.