Business News Digital Labels & Publishers

Yout blocked in Brazil again following criminal copyright complaint

By | Published on Thursday 25 November 2021


Stream-ripping site Yout is blocked in Brazil again because prosecutors in the country have filed a criminal complaint against the service.

This is all part of the music industry’s ongoing battle with stream-ripping, services that allow users to grab permanent downloads of temporary streams. In some countries record industry trade groups have sent cease and desist letters to, or actually filed litigation against, stream-ripping sites, often forcing said sites offline. But in Brazil, music industry trade group APDIF instead made a complaint about various stream-ripping outfits to the country’s Public Prosecutor’s Office.

The PPO began investigating said outfits, and as part of that process secured a web-blocking injunction against the sites APDIF had complained about, which included Yout. That forced internet service providers in the country to block access to the stream-ripping sites.

However, the initial web-blocking injunction only ran for 180 days, and when that time was up lawyers working for Yout requested that the web-block be lifted. The PPO requested an extension while it proceeded with its investigation, but in May this year the São Paulo Criminal Court ruled that an extension of that kind was not justified because prosecutors had so far failed to file any criminal charges against Yout et al.

This meant that Yout was available again in Brazil. But not anymore. According to Torrentfreak, the PPO has now filed a criminal complaint against Yout, prompting another web-blocking order in the country.

It’s not unknown for websites to be blocked – or outright taken down – as soon as criminal copyright charges are filed against the operators of sites accused of copyright infringement, even though those cases have not yet been heard in court. Both MegaUpload and KickassTorrents were kicked off the internet as soon as criminal charges were confirmed, with both of those cases still to get to trial.

However, some would argue that’s not fair, and is basically a ‘guilty until proven innocent’ approach. Indeed, that’s the position taken by Yout’s operator, Jonathan Nader, who tweeted earlier this week: “Learned today, under the Brazilian criminal law, you are considered guilty until there is a sentence absolving you. Good to know”.

As for criminal case against Yout and its operator, pursuing that would require extraditing American citizen Nader to Brazil. With the MegaUpload and Kickass cases, those were being pursued in the US, but so far extraditing the operators of said sites from their bases in New Zealand and Eastern Europe has proven very tricky indeed.