Popular Online Music Service Fizy Banned in Turkey

Turkish court has ordered access block to Fizy, which has become candidate for multiple categories in Webrazzi 2010. The service, which had been having problems with MU-YAP (Turkish Association of the Music Producers) and could not come to a conclusion, has been blocked by Beyoglu Prosecution on 17 December, 2010.

We had already heard that Fizy had been negotiating with MU-YAP on copyrights and had a communication breakdown with the organization. We had also received the information that the two parties couldn’t overcome this problem, even though they had face-to-face meetings.

We had heard that the website would be blocked in the past weeks, but we did not want to share this info with you before receiving official confirmation on the block of the website, which occurred just today.

Update: Bulent Forta, Chairman of MU-YAP, has spoken to DipNot.tv on the status of Fizy. You can read about it below.

Looking at the infograph we published last month, the service had 6.2 million unique visitors per month and more than 150 million page views. Visitors have spent an average of 36 minutes on the website, having more than 500 thousand registered users.

The service had been in touch with MU-YAP and other music companies since the day it was started. It is a saddening development that the service, which had been in close relation with MU-YAP and other music services, has been blocked by court, especially after it has become a worldwide known service and even compete in final in competitions including Mashable Awards.

I believe that the problem between Fizy, one of the most important of the recent Turkish initiatives, and MU-YAP, should come to a conclusion no matter which level it has reached. I hope that Fizy, getting nearly all of its content from YouTube, while MU-YAP publishes its video clip archive on its YouTube channel, will find a way of negotiation at this point.

We can reach Fizy by changing our DNS address and it looks as if it is under maintenance right now, which means you can’t use Fizy even if you can reach it.

Update: Bulent Forta, Chairman of MU-YAP, has made statements to DipNot.tv on the subject. Here are these statements without comment.

Fizy uses our members’ songs, but it does not pay any royalties to us. While portals including TTnet, Turkcell, and Avea are paying royalties for the songs they provide regularly, we cannot favor Fizy.

We have had nearly 20 meetings with Fizy before this decision in 7 months and offered 5 different business plans. However, Fizy was not interested in any of them. Until now, they have a retroactive debt of nearly 80 billion, and they have not paid it, nor are they planning to.

Fizy used to work as a search engine, and was a website like dailymotion. But in 2010, it became a website for listing songs, which is not different than other music websites. This led to unfair competition. As Muyap, we have taken legal action and office of the attorney general has taken a decision. Fizy can seek its rights legally too. Freedom of Internet does not mean freedom of stealing others’ rights. We are a organization protecting artist rights. Fizy says, “we use songs at 100 lira, but pay 5”. We cannot accept this.

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