I'm writing this to warn anyone who might have a similar service, including backup hosting services.

I run a small website at inter.tube. It lets you upload your music collection and stores it in Backblaze B2. It provides a simple web interface to listen to your collection, and support for the Subsonic API (allowing native apps to use it). Fundamentally it is not very different from something like Dropbox or Backblaze: it is a “dumb” backup that simply stores what you give it. It doesn't perform “matching” against other files, it doesn't allow you to access music you didn't explicitly upload, and it doesn't even deduplicate files between different users. It doesn't allow “sharing” of music either, download links are tied to a short access token for a specific user's login session. The only difference between other backup services is that we use the metadata tags in your uploads to organize things better. According to Capitol Records, Inc. v. MP3Tunes, LLC, this is absolutely OK in the eyes of the law (thank you to a fellow HN user for telling me about this court case). Note that we don't even perform deduplication, which was the main controversy in that case.

I have been using Stripe happily for a couple years now, but suddenly (less than 10 minutes after a subscription payment went through), Stripe decided that I violated their Restricted Business policy, in particular “Products and services that infringe intellectual property rights: Sales or distribution of music, movies, software, or any other licensed materials without appropriate authorization”. I thought this was a misunderstanding so I clarified that we don't sell music, just storage space (see paragraph above), but they denied my appeal with a short template response.

This saddens me because my reasons for starting the site are the exact opposite of piracy! I was sick of artists getting paid virtually nothing for streaming service plays, so I decided to buy full albums directly from the artist as much as I could. inter.tube just allows you to keep your collection safe and easily accessible.

I'm posting this mostly to warn other Stripe users that essentially any backup service could “violate” these terms, so be careful about the marketing blurbs on your website. Probably any mention of “music” whatsoever is enough to get your account nuked. I really liked Stripe, always recommended it because of its nice API, but I won't be doing that anymore.

inter.tube will likely die. I'm going to refund my few paying users and disable account registration later, I guess.

As a bonus, I've open-sourced inter.tube. However, it is difficult to run because it relies on a bunch of random cloud services (Backblaze B2 + Cloudflare Workers + Lambda) and there's some hard-coded stuff in there, so it's probably not very useful beyond curiosity. If anyone would like to help me with the open sourcing, let me know, and I'll get back to you whenever I have time. Of course, feel free to fork it as well. I am also on GitHub sponsors if anyone would like to sponsor me to help make it easier to self-host (or at least self-deploy).

Source code: https://github.com/guregu/intertube