Kazaa, once a peer-to-peer file sharing site at the centre of many copyright lawsuits, has officially been re-launched as a legal subscription music service.
The new online payments model, being run by new owner Brilliant Digital Entertainment (BDE), allows registered users to download unlimited music mp3 files for US$19.98 per month.
However, the new subscription package is only for PCs, meaning the files won’t play on an iPod or any other portable music device and once a subscription is terminated, access to the downloaded music ends.
The new service marks a significant change for Kazza, whose turbulent past includes a $100 million legal battle against four major record labels for copyright infringement over its former file sharing network.
In 2006, Kazaa agreed to settle with Universal Music Group, Sony BMG Music Entertainment, EMI Group and Warner Music Group, all of which claimed Kazaa's former owner, Sharman Networks, allowed its users to breach copyright laws by sharing and swapping songs.
Legal troubles have also recently forced peer-to-peer service The Pirate Bay to consider a new payment model for downloads.