Legality of lyrics websites

As we all know, we aren’t allowed to post complete lyrics to a song here on Ye Olde Doppe. Not a problem since there’s plenty of websites that have them and linking to those sites is a breeze.

The question:

How do these sites stay up? At one time, music publishers were having three-headed kittens whenever somebody posted lyrics of songs they owned. They’d threaten the website owner and before you knew it, the site was gone or the lyrics removed.

Have the laws changed?

I’m not knocking it, mind you. I find these sites very helpful.

They get taken down all the time. But in some cases, the sites are outside the US, which makes it harder to file suit. In other cases, they are located in a country that isn’t a Berne Convention signatory, which means there isn’t much a US-based firm can do.

BTW, in my experience, most lyrics sites are festering pools of spyware. Which isn’t surprising, since they need to pay their legal costs. But all too often, they start downloading things onto my computer, or you see some sort of popup to install something or other. Be very careful with lyric sites for that reason.