YouTube is forcing popular Discord music bot Rythm offline, millions impacted

YouTube has recently been on the warpath against Discord music bots. For those unaware, this piece of technology allows users to play music from YouTube videos on Discord servers. Citing copyright violations, Google first shut down the Groovy bot a couple of weeks ago, and now, it is forcing Rythm offline.

A graphic showing running on multiple devices

Rythm is a massively popular music bot which was installed on 20 million Discord servers and was being used by over 560 million people. Yoav, who is the developer behind the bot, stated that the service was being powered by over 4TB of RAM and 1,000 CPU cores. Google’s cease-and-desist letter states that Rythm should be shut down within seven days, and the developers are complying and shuttering the service on September 15.

The shutdown does not only impact 560 million end-users but also the bot’s developer who was involved in this project in a full-time capacity. In a statement to The Verge, Yoav went on to say that:

One way or another we knew this was due to happen eventually, which is why we started working on something new a year ago. Groovy receiving one just meant it would happen sooner rather than later.

I believe that now that we received the letter, all music bots will be getting them too in the following weeks and I strongly believe all of them will shut down. As someone that was a very early user on Discord it’s hard to envision Discord without music bots, they’ve become key to the experience and bring so much fun and engagement to a community. It’s a sad end of an era here for everyone on the platform.

The bot’s official website echoes similar sentiments, but an interesting note over there also emphasizes that work is underway on “something brand new in the music space that will revolutionize how we all listen to music”. As such, the Rythm team has advised users to keep the bot installed on their servers. It remains to be seen what the developers have in store, keeping in view YouTube’s copyright restrictions.

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