This ruling is just one instance, and future court rulings could change the playing field again.
“The court’s interpretation of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act indicates that MP3tunes doesn’t infringe on copyright,” Casey Rae-Hunter, communications director and policy strategist at the Future of Music Coalition, told the E-Commerce Times. “This is based on the fact that the core service is simply a storage locker, and Sideload.com, which MP3tunes operates, doesn’t have any interaction with third-party sites beyond aggregating links. I think the court’s verdict is appropriate in this instance, but it’s important to remember that this is just one ruling by one bench and subject to appeal. Other judges may have a different view of this and other important cases.”
The ruling is significant for other locker-type services such as Google and Amazon, Rae-Hunter added.
“It’s important not to overstate precedent set by one district court, but for operators of similar platforms, the decision has to be seen as positive,” he said. “Of course, it’s also important to note that locker services aren’t the only game in town — there are other online platforms that compensate creators and rights holders based on how the music is used. At the end of the day, the digital music space will be shaped as much by consumer preference as court decisions.”