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Where Did Guitar Tabs Universe Go?

Jul 3, 2008
If you have been looking for Guitar Tabs Universe you have probably figured out that the site is no longer working. Many people looked to this website to learn how to play their favorite songs in a easy to understand and learn format, with tabs for guitar Therefore, Mr. Balch, the one time manager of Guitar Tab Universe decided that he must close the doors of his site in 2006.

Why did Balch close the website? Well, there were a variety of reasons combined, but they all culminated from the fact that MPA (Music Publishers' Association) and the NMPA (National Music Publishers' Association) decided that sharing guitar tabs was an infringement on the copyright owned by the writers, producers, and performers of the songs in question.

Two suits may be filed against GTU. Apparently, and much to the surprise of its owner, when you teach others to play instruments or songs online it goes againt the ethics of these companies. Who knew?

However, as Blach pointed out in his "Goodbye Letter", Guitar Tabs Universe was about sharing with others the art of learning how to play the guitar. It was not about stealing other people songs, it was not about infringing on the rights of others, it was simply about using various songs and their guitar tabs, showing others how they too can learn how to play.

Mr. Blach was certainly in the right when he inquired into why having guitar tabs on the internet is different at all from learning songs from music teachers or even helping someone to learn to play something that they heard on television or radio. What's the essential difference? What the NMPA and MPA apparently think is that the internet is an inappropriate means for sharing such information and is one step over the line.

Guitar Tabs Universe closed it doors because the MPA and NMPA sent threats to the websites ISP or hosting server and the server took action due to these threat. However, as you can plainly see, this has not stopped the world at large from sharing the love of guitar and learning how to play it.

If you somehow think that online guitar tabs are stepping on their rights, then you may as well believe that people everywhere on the internet are committing the same crime. Consider all those who have enjoyed their favorite songs, learning how to play guitar by ear. Think of all those who have helped friends learn songs, and for that matter, all the cover bands and bands just starting out that play other's songs.

So, if you were looking for the late great Guitar Tabs Universe, like many others, this is the reason why it's not available anymore. Therefore, the concept continues on as seen in the numerous guitar tab websites on the internet.
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If you enjoyed this article on Guitar Tabs Universe by 'Guitar Dan' Adkins, take a few seconds to see what else he has to offer at Guitars FYI
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