A German court has now banned the website Likeservice24.de from selling streams, views and other forms of social media engagement for anything regarding the music industry. This move was celebrated by IFPI, a lobbying arm for the music industry and its German branch BVMI, which released a statement on this verdict handed down by the Regional Court of Frankfurt.
“Whilst we don’t know the specific steps that the streaming services themselves are taking on their platforms to directly prevent this activity, for our part, we are taking legal actions to ensure that the streaming market functions properly and without manipulation, which harms creators and their partners,” BVMI Chairman and CEO Dr. Florian Drücke said in statement obtained by The Fader.
Likeservice24.de reportedly offered a number of services, including artificial plays, views, streams and even fake comments likes and subscribers for a variety of music content. Many critics say that this practice denies artists, songwriters and other rights holders of their rightful compensation by harming the accuracy of royalties for music creators. The websites serviced by Likeservice24.de include major social media companies like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and even LinkedIn all the way to streaming services such as YouTube, Spotify, Deezer, Mixcloud and SoundCloud.
According to their website, this service reaches a global audience across 70 countries, with 24/7 customer support and a privacy guarantee. As of press time the website is still up, and has not made any statements about this recent ruling. Six other platforms were subject to similar injunctions last year.