Spotify Streamed 'Pirate' Music During its Early Days; Some From The Pirate Bay

By Prei Dy, | May 16, 2017

Spotify allegedly used 'pirated' MP3s via the Pirate Bay during its early days. (YouTube)

Spotify allegedly used 'pirated' MP3s via the Pirate Bay during its early days. (YouTube)

While Spotify, one of the biggest music streaming services, is credited for turning music pirates into paying customers, Pirate Bay co-founder and member of Sweden's Piratbyrån (piracy bureau) Rasmus Fleischer claims that during the company's early days, it filled its beta with a handful of pirated MP3s including some that were only exclusively available on The Pirate Bay.

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Fleischer along with four others started writing a book entitled Spotify Teardown - Inside the Black Box of Streaming Music, which aims to spill the beans on some of the Swedish company's darkest secrets.

"The entire Spotify beta period and its early launch history were propelled by the Pirate Bay. They'd never have had that much attention without the Pirate Bay happening," Fleischer said. "Spotify's beta version was originally a pirate service and it distributed mp3 files that the employees uploaded from their hard drives."

According to Torrent Freak, rumors that the early version of Spotify used 'pirate' MP3s have been making rounds on the Internet for years. And some people who were able to access the service, in the beginning, reported downloading contents with 'Scene' labeling, tags, and formats, which are signs that these were not officially acquired.

To support his allegation, Fleischer cited a story of a band that exclusively posted its content on The Pirate Bay, and some of its tracks were found on Spotify's beta offering a few days later. He further said that Spotify's growth could be directly linked to the Pirate Bay's temporary downfall. He noted that it is no coincidence that Spotify's launch in 2006 was the same year the Pirate Bay was temporarily shut down and faced trial in the Stockholm District Court.

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