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A The website known for its music piracy past is adapting to the blockchain-driven future.

Limewire, a file-sharing website best known for allowing users to share MP3s in the 2000s, has been relaunched with an implicit focus on blockchain and non-fungible tokens.

The service will relaunch in May as a more accessible and centralized NFT marketplace.

“The problem with the NFT market is that most platforms are decentralized,” LimeWire co-founder Julian Zehetmayr told CNBC on Wednesday. “If you look at bitcoin, all the exchanges really make it easy to buy, trade, and sell bitcoin. Nobody really does the same thing in the NFT space.”

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The LimeWire IP was purchased by Julian and his brother Paul Zehetmayr in 2021, who claim the LimeWire title gives them “that big mainstream brand that everyone is nostalgic for”. They intend to offer music-focused NFTs, including limited editions, never-before-seen demos, and digital merchandise. The Zehetmayrs also plan to launch a LimeWire token, which will be sold to investors ahead of its open sale on the blockchain.

Originally invented in 2000 by Mark Gorton, Limewire was one of the first peer-to-peer file sharing websites. Users have used it to share an assortment of MP3s, prompting several lawmakers and regulators to investigate the music piracy market. A court ruled in 2010 that Gorton had committed copyright infringement, competed unfairly, and incited others to commit copyright infringement. The judge then ordered LimeWire to disable its download and file sharing features.

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The Recording Industry Association of America announced plans to sue LimeWire in 2011, alleging damages of up to $72 trillion. The case was settled when Gorton agreed to pay 13 record labels $105 million.

NFTs are a rapidly growing part of the cryptocurrency market. Ukrainian officials announced on Thursday that they were issuing NFTs to help fund its military efforts. Conservative social network Parler has also announced interest in launching its own NFT marketplace, including a series of Trump-themed NFTs.

Original location: File sharing site LimeWire is relaunched as an NFT marketplace

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