The Pirate Bay, the controversial Swedish piracy torrent tracker, is launching a music site where users can share as much music as they want.
Playable.com is a collaboration between The Pirate Bay, members of the Swedish rock band Lamont, and their manager Kristopher S Wilbur. A statement said: "The shared insight that the record industry is outdated inspired the birth of Playable.com."
Playable.com will allow users to support artists financially. Users will have to pay a monthly fee, but it is up to them how much they want to spend. Artists will receive a portion of that money every time one of their songs is downloaded.
It is unlikely that many record companies will join the initiative, in particular since The Pirate Bay intends to make transactions through its current torrent tracker almost "completely untraceable".
Co-founder Peter Sunde approached several record companies in the USA and told the Los Angeles Times that one record boss even accused him of "perpetrating a disturbingly Viking-like act" on the executive's livelihood.
It is more than likely Playable.com will face law suits for copyright infringement.
Last year, the popular file sharing network eDonkey agreed to pay $30m to settle a case brought by six music labels. P2P networks have succumbed one by one since the US Supreme Court ruled in June 2005 that file sharing services are illegal. ®