Once one of the most popular filesharing sites, RapidShare has announced that it is shutting down at the end of March. “Kindly note that RapidShare will stop the active service on March 31st, 2015,” explained a note to users. “We strongly recommend all customers to secure their data. After March 31st, 2015 all accounts will no longer be accessible and will be deleted automatically.”
A shock? Not so much: RapidShare was one of the most popular websites on the internet a few years ago, but in 2012 it sought to rebrand itself as a legal cyberlocker embracing “our obligation to protect the intellectual property and copyright interests of creators”. It turned out that most of its users weren’t quite as on-message, and they disappeared off to other piracy sites. By 2013, RapidShare was laying off 75% of its staff. This month’s news is thus no big surprise, and the site’s demise is unlikely to be celebrated by rightsholders as it might have been circa 2011.