TiDown, the Tidal Song Downloader, Taken Down By ‘Illegal’ DMCA Notice

There’s no more free Tidal here.

TiDown, your friendly, everyday Tidal downloading tool designed to help you download Tidal songs (illegally) has been shut down by Tidal.  This comes days after it was officially released on GitHub.

Speaking with TorrentFreak, German teenage coder Lordmau5 said,

I recently looked into some potential APIs and found out that it’s super simple to get the stream-/offline-URL for the tracks [from TIDAL] and… well… that’s when the coding began.”

The TiDown tool was a command-line tool.  But images posted by Lordmau5 on imgur allowed users to quickly figure out how to find albums, tracks, and playlists, copy and paste them onto the command-line prompt.  Then, VOILA!  High-quality Tidal music served right on your desktop.

How did TiDown actually work? Much easier than you’d think. Lordmau5 said,

This is an actual downloader.  You are logging into TIDAL through the tool and you get the direct ‘stream-URLs’ that can then be downloaded.

Lordmau5 was an experienced programmer prior to releasing TiDown.  He previously released a tool back in March for downloading MP3s from Spotify, freely available on his GitHub.

With TiDown, Lordmau5 had apparently faced trolling from people who thought that he didn’t make a proper working downloader for the service. His response? He created “the most ancient-looking site possible” along with those ancient “trashy ‘promo’ video” on YouTube.

The DMCA Smackdown.

Lordmau5 was hoping for a free month without enforcement.  The reason?  “That’s the free trial for TIDAL,” he said.

If you head to TiDown’s official GitHub, you’ll find a straightforward DMCA message.  The official forum post shows that Reed Smith, LLP had requested the takedown on behalf of Tidal.  The accusation?

The code provided by the user can be used to circumvent access controls to copyright protected works.”

Lordmau5 recently told TorrentFreak that he has no plans to fight the DMCA, which is wrong on a technicality.

The DMCA request says that I would’ve used their source code, which is wrong.  So *technically* the DMCA is illegal and I could sue them over that.  However, since I don’t have or know a lawyer in that area, and it would cost a fortune to pay the cost, I’ll just let it rest for now.


Takedown image by Donald Ogg, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC by 2.0)

11 Responses

    • Daniel Adrian Sanchez

      I’d love to hear your point of view. In what way do you think he’s a hypocrite? (Note: I’m not in any way defending this guy.)

      • Versus

        He’s a hypocrite in violating the law on the one hand by disregarding intellectual property rights, and then using the law to criticize the use of the DMCA as “illegal” on the other hand.

        • Daniel Adrian Sanchez

          You make a good point there. I can only imagine that if he did have the money, he would’ve taken the case, maybe not because he was correct, but probably out of pride.

        • V@ctor

          His point was that the guys who sent the DMCA request simply didn’t understand what was happening at all.

  1. V@ctor

    DMCA is stupid. There are already clones of TiDown. And there will be more. It’s the internet, guys, come on. Are they really so stupid to not understand that fighting downloads is less than meaningless?

    • Daniel Adrian Sanchez

      Usually, what I’ve seen is that DMCA takedown notices tend to have the unintended effect of giving the original software even more attention, thus causing it, like you said, to be cloned over and over again and thus spread far more quickly than it would have ever been on its own.

      • V@ctor

        Yep, exactly. Those takedown notices is basically advertisements. 🙂

    • Versus

      Why is it stupid to fight for your rights, even when the fight is difficult?
      Should musicians (and all others whose livelihood depends on intellectual property rights) just roll over and die?

      • V@ctor

        It’s not a fight for anyone’s rights, that’s the point. It’s a fight against transferring data across the network. The only way to win this fight is to shut down the internet. Otherwise, people simply need to understand and admit that it’s going to happen anyway and you can do nothing about it.

        Some musicians manage to survive with Bandcamp, Patreon, Kickstarter and other similar services, as well as with their live performances.

        If one’s life completely depends on intellectual properties, then well… I can be only sorry for the guy. It sounds more like a patent troll to me (= parasite).

  2. wallow-T

    “German TEENAGE coder Lordmau5 said,…’ found out that it’s SUPER SIMPLE to get the stream-/offline-URL for the tracks …'” (emphasis added.)

    If your business model depends on kids not being bright and curious, you have a problem. The Internet and the computer form a Tinker-Toy kit which can be assembled in many different ways to copy and transfer files.