It was affectionately referred to as Sharebeast Records and Tapes, a file-sharing outpost where visitors could upload and download songs, albums and films. Now it’s gone by the wayside thanks to the Justice Department. The United States Department of Justice has shuttered popular website, described as “the largest U.S.-based music piracy site” for distributing “a massive library of popular albums and tracks” before their release.

Much like other site takedowns in the past, the FBI Anti-Piracy Warning label now appears on the domain as well as a secondary site, The RIAA stated it had reported more than 100,000 infringing files to the service before the eventual takedown.

RIAA chairman Cary Sherman slammed Sharebeast in a statement, calling it a victory for the industry and other file-sharing services who conduct business in legal means.

“This is a huge win for the music community and legitimate music services, he said. “Sharebeast operated with flagrant disregard for the rights of artists and labels while undermining the legal marketplace.

“Millions of users accessed songs from Sharebeast each month without one penny of compensation going to countless artists, songwriters, labels and others who created the music. We are grateful to the FBI and the Department of Justice for its strong stand against Sharebeast and for recognizing that these types of illicit sites wreak major damage on the music community and hinder fans’ legitimate listening options.”

About The Author

Brandon Caldwell is the founder & editor-in-chief of Day & A Dream. His work has appeared in VIBE, UPROXX, Complex, EBONY, the Village Voice, the Houston Press, Houston Style Magazine, DJBooth, The Sports Fans Journal, and more. Follow him on Twitter: @_brandoc