The popular music app GrooveShark is no longer available on Android platforms via the official Market after Google yanked the plug out of its amplifier this week. This marks the second time Escape Media Group’s music sharing software has been booed off the stage in as many years.
GrooveShark’s untimely, if expected removal follows a similar curb-kicking it received last summer by Apple.
Citing industry pressure and legal concerns related to Universal Music Group’s lawsuit against GrooveShark’s owners, Apple chose the path of least resistance and pulled it from the App Store. Despite its demise on iDevices, GrooveShark still boasted a presence in the competing Android market and of course online, where it offered both free and subscription-based services.
The recent move by Google now leaves the company’s website as the sole way to access the app and the services it provides.
Grooveshark’s legal malaise began in 2009 when music industry giant EMI filed suit against the music sharer, citing copyright violations pertaining to the DMCA. Eventually, the two turned their legal head-butting into something more beneficial for both parties: a licensing deal which kept GrooveShark swimming and doused EMIs litigious fire.
EMG, however, isn’t taking GrooveShark’s dismissal from the Android Market lightly. According to TechCrunch, the company issued the following statement:
It is our full intent to get Grooveshark for Android back into the Android Marketplace, and we haven’t received any specific information from Google about what in the developers’ terms of service, exactly, we need to address to be re-admitted to the marketplace–only that Google received a letter of complaint from the RIAA.
As a user-sourced service, like YouTube, Grooveshark complies speedily with all DMCA requests to make sure that we operate within the law and respect the wishes of content owners. Unlike Apple’s iPhone ecosystem, Android is an open platform, and Google is traditionally a supporter of DMCA-compliant services–indeed, Google itself relies on the DMCA for the very same protection that Grooveshark does.
Grooveshark works night and day to develop new successes in the music industry, as well as pay the many content partners with whom we work. The current unavailability of our app is taking money from the thousands of hard-working labels, artists, and content partners who benefit from a share of Grooveshark’s mobile subscription revenue. We look forward to working with Google to get our app reinstated.