There is a nervous chill going through the music industry bloggers corner of the larger blogosphere and it has to do with posts of theirs just disappearing. Literally one minute they are there and the next minute they are gone. LA Weekly is reporting on the story that the bloggers that are being affected are all using Google's Blogger platform which needless to say has a lot of music bloggers looking for new homes.
The story first came to the forefront when Ryan Spaulding, the writer behind the Boston based music blog Ryan's Smashing Life, noticed that moth old posts that he had written; as well as much older ones, were disappearing from his site. As far as he could see there was no rhyme or reason to it. Unsure of what was happening he started comparing notes with other music bloggers and as a result found that posts right across the web – everything from posts about Abba to Zappa, had vanished.
It was only after a number of emails and conversations that Ryan and the other bloggers figured out that all the affected blogs where located on Google's Blogger platform
Eventually, though, a consensus emerged: Each post takedown occurred on a blog hosted by the Google-owned Blogger platform, the publishing system used by the majority of mp3 sites, particularly those founded prior to 2007, when the open-source WordPress software became the vogue. Google, the bloggers believe, has quietly changed the methods by which it enforces its user agreement. Whereas in the past, a blog owner would receive a warning before a post's removal, Google is now simply hitting the delete button. In Spaulding's case, this means that posts written over the past year or more on Wilco, the Annuals, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Matisyahu and Earth, Wind Fire are gone.
"I'd received the label's press releases and followed their directions, spending my time and energy to promote their albums," explains a frustrated Spaulding. "By pulling down my post, they destroyed my intellectual creativity, the very same thing they're erroneously accusing me of doing. Say someone had linked to that post, or [blog aggregator] Hype Machine — it's gone completely. If I go into my Blogger table of contents, it's gone. Not de-published — gone."
Spaulding says he plays by the understood rules, and is doing the same thing that thousands of other music bloggers are doing. "I'm not leaking albums, not putting up three mp3s. Just the one they wanted. And they start erasing everything, with the threat of a lawsuit. People are afraid."
Source: LA Weekly
I realize that Google can be heavy handed at times and no-one is surprised by anything that the RIAA does anymore but if this story is true then I think that Google has a lot to answer for. I hope for their sake this is wrong because if not it will show to everyone that Google is definitely the new evil.