With the recording industry breathing down the necks of illegal file sharer and suing anyone they can find from dead grandmothers to single mothers, iMesh comes both as a surprise and relief. This peer2peer file sharing network is the first of it’s kind (and only one) to be approved by RIAA.
Initially iMesh was as illegal as any file sharing network in the eyes of the recording industry. In 2003, it got sued by RIAA for copyright infringement. Later the lawsuit was settled with iMesh paying US$4.1 million to RIAA. However, according to the terms of the settlement, iMesh was allowed to continue operating as normal whilst implementing a paid service. Today, iMesh is advertised as a “100% legal P2P client” and the first file sharing network to be acknowledged by RIAA as a legal music download software.
With iMesh you can browse millions of new songs and videos by clicking on the “Discover” button or simply search for your desired music or artist.
iMesh offers download of both free as well as copyrighted music. The copyrighted contents are accessible on an unlimited basis with their Premium service or can be bought for $.99 each. The dividing line between free and copyrighted content, however, is blurred by the fact that iMesh is also a peer2peer download software where files can be downloaded from the “swarm” or other iMesh users. Because of this many copyrighted music and videos can easily be downloaded through this software. I’m not sure how this comes under the legal umbrella, but somehow it does.
As an agreement with the MPAA, video files more than 50 MB in size and 15 minutes in length cannot be shared on the iMesh network, thus preventing sharing of full length movies.
iMesh has an inbuilt instant messenger that allows you to chat with other users in the network. You can add friends, chat and even send files directly to them. It also integrates a CD burner allowing you to create music CDs from your downloaded tracks. You can also connect your iPod and transfer your downloaded music to it.
If you are concerned about infringing copyright while downloading music iMesh is the way to go.