shut down, but more Russian music websites opened

By EDRi · July 18, 2007

(Dieser Artikel ist auch in deutscher Sprache verfügbar)

The famous website was quietly shut down at the beginning of
July 2007, but the Russian websites that are selling music online at much
cheaper prices are on the rise, one of them winning also a lawsuit against

Russian authorities pressured the Moscow-based company MediaServices, owner
of, to close its website in order to meet the requirements
for the entry into the World Trade Organisation. MediaServices claimed
that is was a legal business, paying royalties to a Russian collective
society that distributed the collected fees to the copyright holders.

However, a new website,, was opened by MediaServices selling
online music. The company considers that the new website is legal under the
Russian law, using similar arguments advanced in support of
Also, another online music Russian website,, has a joint client
database with

The latter website had a rough time at the beginning of the year when Visa
and MasterCard announced that they would no longer process payments for and, following a request from the International
Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) that accused them of
copyright infringement.

But Internet-Audit, the owner of, sued Rosbank, the Russian
agent of Visa, the international payment system and its affiliate United
Card Services, the acquiring center. The Moscow Arbitrary Court
decided that VISA’s unilateral refusal to accept the payment operations
was illegal, considering that, according with the copyright law, neither
IFPI or VISA were the right holders representatives.

The decision has put VISA in a difficult position because they need to
respect also the court decision and accept payments from, but
also to stick to its original decision, required by the IFPI. According to a
Moscow business lawyer: “Visa is likely to press Rosbank down under the
threat to recall the credit card acquiring right, so that the bank does not
resume credit cards payment through Alltunes under any conditions.”

IFPI has announced that they would appeal the decision.

Russian pirates get Visa in court (13.07.2007)

Goodbye,, Hello, WTO! (5.07.2007)

AllofMP3 Shuts Down, Reopens As (3.07.2007)

Russia shuts down (2.07.2007)

EDRI-gram: Russian copyright law gets tougher (13.09.2006)