Turntable.fm forced to stop accepting users outside US

New music streaming social network hits legal problems

Turntable FM, the latest music-related social networking tool to cause a buzz, has hit legal problems and has been forced to close its service for users outside the United States.

It’s essentially a music streaming service which allows multiple users to interact with each other, and offer opinions on each others’ music, in private DJ rooms. Each room has up to five DJ slots, and users take it in turns to play a song, while listeners rate them as ‘awesome’ or ‘lame’.

Following a number of temporary shutdowns of the service, over the weekend bosses Tweeted the following from Twitter.com/turntablefm: “To all our international friends, we’re sorry you can’t use Turntable right now due to licensing constraints. Trying to get you back in asap.”

The service is allowed to continue in the US because it is protected by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, which allows for “non-interactive” streaming audio without requiring licences from labels and artists. However, as the main appeal of the service is its interactive nature, it could find itself open to legal challenges there in the near future.

The service was recently talked about as being as revolutionary as Twitter or Foursquare by influential gadget blog Techcrunch and has already seen a number of celebrity sign-ups, including ‘Baby’s Got Back’ star Sir Mix-A-Lot.