Anger Over DRM-free iTunes Tracks

The launch of the DRM-free music store from Apple has been overshadowed by news that tracks purchased from the store contain information of who bought the songs embedded into the files. Some fear that should these tracks make their way onto file sharing sites that the original owners could easily be identified.

The tracks from record company EMI cost more and are of a better quality than standard iTunes songs. Apple has yet to comment on what it plans to do with the information embedded in the music files. Many news sites are already speculating that it will be a matter of time before software becomes available that will strip personal data from the downloaded files.

News source: BBC

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Patchou said,
Please let me remind you of the following: audio CDs you buy in music stores contain no encryption, no DRM, no identifiable information, the best quality you'll ever get with no compression at all, a nice printed jacket and a long lasting disc that won't be subject to loss caused by a hard disk failure. Don't like what's associated with downloading tracks? get the CD, I know I do.
lol no compression? no strictly as you as you might think - most CDs nowadays have there wave form terribly clipped and compressed to me it sound "LOUD" - RHCP Californication is one very good example of this. compare the sound of that to blood sugar and you'll see what i mean

Actually, I always hoped that online music would indeed bring a lot of "hard to find" tracks not available in stores but it proved not to be the case (unfortunately as I import a lot of what I listen).

As for the quality of the material recorded on the CD, I'll check it out but could it be that you just don't like the way some CDs are mixed nowadays? (I don't blame you, it's a matter of taste anyway). Still, it wouldn't change the fact that what you can get online is taken from the same master and compressed in a lossy way so anybody who wants the best quality possible has no reason to buy anything that can be downloaded online.

Jesus everyone bitched because they wanted DRM free media; now that they have DRM free media still bitch.

Oh, I see. As long as other people don't share your music, you'll be fine. :rolleyes:

Could be why people are asking how the information will be used.

The info probably isn't in plain text in the file, it would be something like a unique wave signature implanted randomly in the file, but won't interfere with the song as it plays.

You have no reason to fear this, unless someone decodes the signatures, so unless this happens Apple are the only ones at the minute who know how to decode this.

Assuming that they use my method, even if your iPod is stolen, you will be safe, just remember to report it as stolen. The only thing you have to fear, is if YOU put the files on Limewire or something.

Simon Thulbourn said,
You have no reason to fear this, unless someone decodes the signatures, so unless this happens Apple are the only ones at the minute who know how to decode this.

Assuming that they use my method, even if your iPod is stolen, you will be safe, just remember to report it as stolen. The only thing you have to fear, is if YOU put the files on Limewire or something.

So your saying that should I fear, or not have any fear? Who's to say the person that stole your IPOD, puts your music files on a file sharing network for you? Reporting your IPOD stolen is not gonna change anything.

7Dash8 said,

There, I've corrected your typo for you.


Why is it that everyone always resorts to the word piracy? Just like with the war on terror, it's just another excuse. Besides, we all know just about anyone nowadays is vulnerable to identity theft, etc., but why make it any worse?

Because just like pirates of old, there are a lot of people getting something without paying for it, nor earning it. Pirates used to sail around and just take what they wanted, all the while making themselves out to be heroes. Same goes for people who download truckloads of music for free and expect it is their god-given right to do so.

7Dash8 said,
Because just like pirates of old, there are a lot of people getting something without paying for it, nor earning it. Pirates used to sail around and just take what they wanted, all the while making themselves out to be heroes. Same goes for people who download truckloads of music for free and expect it is their god-given right to do so.

What are pirates? :sleeping:

7Dash8 said,
Because just like pirates of old, there are a lot of people getting something without paying for it, nor earning it. Pirates used to sail around and just take what they wanted, all the while making themselves out to be heroes. Same goes for people who download truckloads of music for free and expect it is their god-given right to do so.


Arrr, to beat the pirate, sometimes you have to be the pirate yourself. Arrrr.

I'm getting sick of people saying the only ones upset are the ones who are pirating. This is not true and sounds more like the sound of n00bs and trolls.

For starters, people who pirate stuff don't usually get caught only maybe once in a while they do. Also pirated material is usually stripped of any kind "Phone Home", Personally Identifiable information, and the need to Activate online, over the phone and the list goes on. People who pirate stuff hardly have anything to worry about. It's just the same senseless bashing everyone does on this forum about piracy and Anti-Windows fanatics, to increase their e-penis and trample over people.

This is more an issue of security, as if anything happens your name and email is out in the open and entirely public. If we had nothing to worry about, why not use our real names while registering in forums, blogs, news sites, what are we all afraid of? Yeah sure you give your name and email out when ordering something online, however you have to be cautious of who you give it to and how reputable they are. Someone can Steal your identity with just your name, by doing a simple web search with your name and obtain Social Security information as well as other vital information. I only want my name out there to people I trust.

Also you people act as if you've never pirated anything in your life. If you say you haven't, you are blatantly outright lying. Everyone has at least pirated something once in their lives that has used a computer. It's Hypocrisy at it's finest if you deny it.

To some this up, it should be someones choice whether they want to distribute something online. Seeing as they paid for their copy/or product and supported the developers/company while fattening the greedy corporate ******* wallets even more it ultimately should be up to the user what he/she wants to do with something they paid for without interference.

Yeah I don't agree with people freeloading or pirating either, but I'm not going to outright deny that I have pirated a bit in the past few years. Most people who pirate, do it because they A. They either can't afford to buy it and it's easier to pirate it. B. They want to try it before they buy it when there is no demo or trial available. And C. because they want to get everything for free without paying for it, which means they were never a potential customer anyways and thus no sales lost/gained.

In some countries downloading copyrighted material is completely legal, so people in those countries have nothing to worry about.

Moral of Story is, the pirates barely ever get caught and it's just another inconvenience for the end user.

Personally this Itunes fiasco is still DRM in a way with more freedom. Essentially DRM in Disguise

*Awaits the onslaught of typical Windows Fanbois and Anti-Piracy/Piracy Hypocrites*

"Privacy" is the typical excuse people give, and quite frankly I'm sick of this excuse. We do not live in a world where we have total privacy - that is what you sacrifice for living in society.

What if someone steals your wallet? They now have access to your funds, personal information about you, including your address, even pictures of you and your family perhaps.

So does that mean that the concept of needing to carry around a wallet, with things like your Drivers License and Credit Card are gross invasions of your privacy - or are they just a normal part of living in a society?

Buying music online needs some safeguards for the people selling this music. They're not just going to trust that the average person won't share the music willy-nilly, so some personally identifying information in the music should deter the average person from sharing the music. You do not have a right to just do whatever you want with the music you buy.

7Dash8 said,
Buying music online needs some safeguards for the people selling this music.

So your saying by embedding certain kinds of personal information into media files are a safeguard? Hmmm. Please explain. File sharing is not a good enough excuse for me either.

7Dash8 said,
"Privacy" is the typical excuse people give, and quite frankly I'm sick of this excuse. We do not live in a world where we have total privacy - that is what you sacrifice for living in society.

What if someone steals your wallet? They now have access to your funds, personal information about you, including your address, even pictures of you and your family perhaps.

So does that mean that the concept of needing to carry around a wallet, with things like your Drivers License and Credit Card are gross invasions of your privacy - or are they just a normal part of living in a society?

Buying music online needs some safeguards for the people selling this music. They're not just going to trust that the average person won't share the music willy-nilly, so some personally identifying information in the music should deter the average person from sharing the music. You do not have a right to just do whatever you want with the music you buy.

Then by that logic, I guess you would have no problem posting your full name or address on a forum/blog either. Please explain further and enlighten me ever so much. I find your reply very one-sided and contradicting itself in more ways than one.

There are certain boundaries that shouldn't be crossed with personally identifiable information, and if someone doesn't do something soon enough it will evolve into an even bigger problem or situation. People are very cautious on who they give there sensitive information to nowadays, whether it would be a name, address, email or any other type of information.

If you don't like you're information secure and only given out to people you want, that is your choice. Don't come a complaining when you get screwed over by some thieving criminal.

Once your name gets into the hands of the wrong people all hell can break loose such as them assuming your identity , getting credit in your name. All the wrong person needs is just your name, and with a simple search they can do any unnecessary evil with it. It's not a matter of the information being out there, it's more what if it gets into the hands of the wrong person.

The file sharing excuse people keep using as a method to belittle people who speak out on this is getting old and filled with hypocrisy as I mentioned in my last post. People who Pirate stuff have no need to worry about any of this as Personally Identifiable Information, and other Anti-Piracy bells and whistles are stripped off of distributed downloads. So you are obviously talking to a brick wall and nobody's listening

[Sarcasm]I'll laugh at you when you try to get credit and are denied because some hacker got credit in your name off of your accidentally leaked Itunes album.[/Sarcasm]

Xtreme2damax said,
Then by that logic, I guess you would have no problem posting your full name or address on a forum/blog either. Please explain further and enlighten me ever so much. I find your reply very one-sided and contradicting itself in more ways than one.
Possible because you're not actually thinking about what I've written, but seeing only what you want to read?

It's very simple - each of us already carries around enough identifying information to really harm us should someone steal it. It's in our wallets, purses, etc.

Now for idiots to argue that tagging some basic encrypted identifying information in a purchased song is somehow a major threat to our privacy, well, it really is a bit rich isn't it. We've got more chance of having our wallet stolen than having a song stolen from our drives, and there's more chance a thief could do harm with the contents of our wallets than with encrypted basic info on a digital track.

So while you may smirk, laugh and act silly trying to prove your "point", it seems you've left basic logic in the dust and now just want to somehow suggest that piracy is fine, and that companies should not try to protect their music. Just let it be free, willy nilly, and hope that consumers don't spread it around like wildfire.

7Dash8 said,
Possible because you're not actually thinking about what I've written, but seeing only what you want to read?

It's very simple - each of us already carries around enough identifying information to really harm us should someone steal it. It's in our wallets, purses, etc.

Now for idiots to argue that tagging some basic encrypted identifying information in a purchased song is somehow a major threat to our privacy, well, it really is a bit rich isn't it. We've got more chance of having our wallet stolen than having a song stolen from our drives, and there's more chance a thief could do harm with the contents of our wallets than with encrypted basic info on a digital track.

So while you may smirk, laugh and act silly trying to prove your "point", it seems you've left basic logic in the dust and now just want to somehow suggest that piracy is fine, and that companies should not try to protect their music. Just let it be free, willy nilly, and hope that consumers don't spread it around like wildfire.

For one, I wasn't saying piracy is OK. I think that they should be able to protect their assets as well. I do think they should take a different approach though instead of publishing personally identifiable information encrypted or whatever in the song you purchase. A simple serial number tied to your account on Itunes would be more sufficient, that means nothing to anyone else but apple that they can use to identify you on their private network/website, should the songs ever make their way to P2P instead of publishing your name and email in with the Song. Just as long as your name doesn't wind up with anyone else you don't want it to by using the method above, I think people will be happy.

Piracy however is one of the most lamest, stereotypical, hypocritical and oldest excuses people could use as to why we don't want this. Piracy has nothing to do with it as I mentioned because people who pirate material don't have to worry about all this garbage, and it is essentially stripped from almost every distributed download via torrents or another method. The pirates have nothing to worry about, however the legit consumer does. And why does piracy keep being brought into this? You all act as if you've never downloaded anything off of the net or through P2P illegally, which I'm pretty sure you have done at least once in your lives and yet you bash others that do it just to cover your asses trying to act all high and mighty.

Yes most or a lot of us are being a little paranoid about this, but how much longer is this crap going to go on and worsens, before someone stands up and says enough? Yes a thief can steal you're wallet, but only stupid people would leave their wallets out in the open where they can be snatched freely, or walk around a crowded place without securing their hands over their wallets in their pocket, and most thieves wouldn't so stupid as to rob you in a crowded place in broad daylight unless you were not securing you valuable and vital assets (Pickpocketing) But most to a lot of thieves wouldn't be stupid enough to result to forceful violence to rob you in a crowded place in broad daylight.

Yes common **** will happen such as theft, but it is up to the person to stand up and try to secure their information as much as they can. What are we supposed to do, just sit there and let apple do what they want? If someone doesn't say or do anything to prevent it, that would be about equal to leaving your wallet out in the open or your information insecure.

And no, you're computer being hacked is not the only way the songs with your name embedded on them can end up in the wrong hands, and neither is P2P. There are many other ways this can wind up with the wrong person. It is up to people to speak up when they think enough is enough instead of waiting until the situation worsens and nothing can be done about it. Piracy is Not the Reason we are upset. It's partly because they said DRM Free, and I still consider embedding your name and email in the song a form of less restricted DRM, but DRM nonetheless which wasn't what we were promised. We want our music as fresh as if you ripped it off of the CD yourself without any embedded junk added in

Just out of curiosity -

If I buy a cd, rip it and burn a copy, then give it to a friend to listen to = piracy.

If I buy a cd, and lend it to a friend = piracy ?

Either way the friend gets to listen without paying...

yes, technically speaking. both are piracy. even worse is if you charge for it. lending a cd to a friend isn't something the riaa is gonna sue you for, but they're both piracy

even with my for-piracy and anti-riaa political standpoints, i believe that even a code that can have info released upon proof one is doing it for the government would be fine. knowing that this is there makes me glad to piratebuy from "other" stores. something where just plugging a stolen ipod into your computer can give you information that can be sold for money (spam) or researched for potential robberies/muggings/kidnappings etc (remember, ipods are most commonly owned by kids) is not a good idea.

For all of those bitching about iTunes on windows, you have no idea of the hell that is Windows Media Player on OSX.


You can't possibly expect a ported app to be as good as it is on its native OS, and vice versa, but iTunes on Windows > WMP on OSX ANY day, and the same goes if you look at it the other way.

I hated quicktime on windows, but on osx I love it and hate wmv.

Its not the software, its the OS.

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