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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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.

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.

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

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

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.

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.

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.

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

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.

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.

I cant comprehend the stupidity of some of these posts... The ONLY viable argument I've seen is if the ipod is stolen. Everyone else is just whining because they want it totally "free" to "share".

I find this whole conversation very funny - why after millions of files downloaded it is now all of a sudden an issue?? Everyone who has ever downloaded a file from itunes - protected or not - had this SAME info embedded in them. Hasn't anyone ever wondered how itunes 'magically' knows your login email address after you restore your system or take a protected music file to another computer and attempt to play it there for the first time? iTunes recognizes the 'authorized user ID' to which it was purchased and then prompts you to enter the password associated with it to allow the song to be played. In the case of DRM free - the info is still there, just not actively used to ensure that the files are only played on 'authorized' computers. Which at present the magic number at a time is 5 for the protected variety.

If you don't like the way the downloads work then don't pay for them and buy the cd. I'd imagine with all the costs of production, shipping, and retail mark-up they make a lot less, and you don't have to deal with the garbage.

Simple solution, don't share the songs on P2P networks. with DRM free you can use the music on any of your devices without worry so I think it's awesome that iTunes has done this because I'm sure more things will follow DRM-free.

so, who cares, look your finally getting drm free music over the net. If your downloading music over the legally your probably not going to put it on a p2p network. Don't bother me what does is the current lack of content and the additional cost. still I should imagine 90% of itunes customers will still download drm tracks as they know no better.

oh btw is it a mp3 format

Sounds a bit of a lazy and stupid method to me. Dont you need to supply details before buying the music (since obviously they have these details to imbed). Why not imbed a random number of some sort associated with your account so that if the files do get onto file sharring networks both Apple and EMI can track it back to you without having any other person with some sort of sniffing program being able to extract whatever personal info is being held in the file.

It makes perfect sense to me to do it this way, its more secure and will result in a very slightly smaller file size too by a few bytes (woot bonus!).

You people realize that you've already given your emails and name to a million places online right? So how is this a concern is beyond me. I guess people just gotta complain about something.

Boz said,
You people realize that you've already given your emails and name to a million places online right? So how is this a concern is beyond me. I guess people just gotta complain about something.

The birdie kept flying south.

People who are nagging about this, are just so funny. You don't know what you want. You want them to sell songs for $1.29 without ANY restrictions. How ridiculous is that.

You all need to grow up. This is just fine with me. I buy a car and I have a license plate and everybody can get information that it's my car. My phone record is public as marketeers are calling everyday. So how is this any worse? It's not. You people are just inventing reasons to illegally download and share music. Do you give out other stuff you buy to your friends? Maybe some, but I do believe that my friends need to buy stuff for themselves anyways.

Second I will buy music or videos, put it on all my devices and that's it. I don't have a problem having my name nad contact information on the files. Just as long as it's not my social security number or credit card number, I'm fine with it.

Some people just don't know what they want anymore.

Boz said,
Some people just don't know what they want anymore.

Freedom of privacy? And not only because I show everyone that I paid for it. That excuse is getting old.

D-M said,

Freedom of privacy? And not only because I show everyone that I paid for it. That excuse is getting old. :rolleyes:

You realize that the music you are buying is a product right? Everything you buy has a track to you, there's no difference with music, only they need to put some kind of sharing prevention. If you don't want your name out, don't give it away, the same you do with bills and your social security number for example. Just don't give it to others.

It is very obvious, this is is a non issue made to be issue by people who want to get songs for free and have the ability to give them away and do whatever they want with it. Well with music and movies this doesn't work and you should be tracked if you post the new MP3 on torrent or you give it away to 15 other people. Again, this is awesome actually. I can use the media everywhere on my devices and I get to buy it legally. I'm not gonna share so having my name appear on the songs is a non-issue for me. It's like a receipt.

1.30 without any restrictions? Like they were selling them for free and we couldn't complain? Buying the CDs is still cheaper. God, buying the CDs is cheaper than buying the 128kbps DRM files.

As far as I know, I can gather the information on who's the car that is parked across the street. Fine, I can see the plate but that doesn't give me his name and email.

Since I'll probably never buy from itunes (the last time I did was like a year ago), I don't give a damn. But I understand those who are concerned about it. Frankly, there's no need for music files to have your name and email embedded on them.

I can publish my phone number all over the place, and I don't think people is gonna come up with my email and password.

Boz said,
It's like a receipt.

Why would you want to show everyone else ( that /what / or when ) you bought it? Doesn't make sense.

Julius Caro said,
1.30 without any restrictions? Like they were selling them for free and we couldn't complain? Buying the CDs is still cheaper. God, buying the CDs is cheaper than buying the 128kbps DRM files.

As far as I know, I can gather the information on who's the car that is parked across the street. Fine, I can see the plate but that doesn't give me his name and email.

Since I'll probably never buy from itunes (the last time I did was like a year ago), I don't give a damn. But I understand those who are concerned about it. Frankly, there's no need for music files to have your name and email embedded on them.

I can publish my phone number all over the place, and I don't think people is gonna come up with my email and password.

First of all your not publishing your password and it's not embedding your pass. I don't know where you come up with that. Other thing, I guarantee that there's at least a million people right now having your name, your phone number, you address, your bank account etc etc. They are not allowed to share (but they do on many ocassions), but they do have it. So, what's the problem again here that you have your name and your email with the file? Whoops, big deal, especially since NOBODY else will see this as you are listening your music on all of YOUR OWN devices.

It raises only concerns if you SHARE your music with other people (which is btw illegal and SHOULD be stopped, artists aren't doing this for free and neither are publishing houses, if you think so you need to grow up), but then again, you are not SHARING your phone bill, for example, with other people now don't you?

D-M said,

Why would you want to show everyone else ( that /what / or when ) you bought it? Doesn't make sense.

But you are not SHOWING it to anyone. It's YOUR music, on your devices, if you are SHOWING it to others that means you are doing something ILLEGAL, like SHARING your music.

Btw, your phone bills, mail that your throw away, credit cards etc etc get stolen every day, so please spare me with that stealing idea. You need to take care of your own crap.

Boz said,
But you are not SHOWING it to anyone. It's YOUR music, on your devices, if you are SHOWING it to others that means you are doing something ILLEGAL, like SHARING your music.

Who said anything about SHARING MUSIC? That is the only thought you can come up with. The stolen IPOD theory works for starters, let alone other methods that people could contain personal information from a music file. When you can think of other possible reasons, except for your sharing only theory, let me know. Till then, I will continue to purchase CD's from the store, and rip them in my own format of choice, put them on any device I choose, and still never share them with anyone else, unless my portable player device was stolen. But then I wouldn't have to worry about someone stripping the personal information off from the media files that I created either.

All they really need is to embed liek say a user ID which is tied to an account. This is theoretical, say my username is Fuhree and i was the 1,702,415th person to sign up. They could use that and a one-way hash of the username to verify that the 2 match in the db and are not altered. That would keep your info secure and still allow them to find people who are being naughty

Example somewhere near the begining of the file: 1702415[hex:00]<one-way hash of username>[hex:00][Music Data]

When the ID # is looked up and the username is passed through the hash generator and the hashes match, its known that the user id wasnt just changed to a random number by someone and that the original sharer is the person tied with the username.

FuhrerDarqueSyde said,
All they really need is to embed liek say a user ID which is tied to an account. This is theoretical, say my username is Fuhree and i was the 1,702,415th person to sign up. They could use that and a one-way hash of the username to verify that the 2 match in the db and are not altered. That would keep your info secure and still allow them to find people who are being naughty

Example somewhere near the begining of the file: 1702415[hex:00]<one-way hash of username>[hex:00][Music Data]

When the ID # is looked up and the username is passed through the hash generator and the hashes match, its known that the user id wasnt just changed to a random number by someone and that the original sharer is the person tied with the username.


Sounds good, but the counter-measure still wouldn't add up. :sleeping:

eh, there will always be a way to strip the info out and it'd have to be able to play it without the info for backwards compat. but it can still catch people who are too dumb to strip it out and still share the files.

Its a nice step to having portable music without restricting the user...

FuhrerDarqueSyde said,
but it can still catch people who are too dumb to strip it out and still share the files.

Define the word dumb in your eyes.. Do you have the right to dictate someone being "dumb", or oppose to someone being "undereducated" in one particular subject (Depending on the subject of course).

A dumb person, in this context in my eyes, is someone who is willing to illegally share a file without taking at least basic steps to mask their identity.

If they implemented a sytem like I described and they didn't even take the precaution, they'd be dumb imo.

I don't really see the problem here. If you don't share your music, then there shouldn't be a problem. Besides, it's not like there isn't going to be a utility within a week that strips your information from the DRM-free files.

People shouldn't get up in arms about this. I agree that it could pose a problem if your computer was hacked, but would you rather have DRM-laden files instead?

The issue is not about sharing but it is about liability. Now you have another worry, that if the songs get out for whatever reason (your computer got hacked, stolen ipod, etc) you are almost certain to be SUED and almost certainly will LOOSE in court.

Moral of the story. DO NOT BUY MUSIC. Use torrents.

electic102 said,
The issue is not about sharing but it is about liability. Now you have another worry, that if the songs get out for whatever reason (your computer got hacked, stolen ipod, etc) you are almost certain to be SUED and almost certainly will LOOSE in court.

Moral of the story. DO NOT BUY MUSIC. Use torrents.

I agree pretty much. Besides, on top of everything, I wouldn't want "all" my "digital ID" stamped with "all" the other digital information that is being collected about me, and put them onto my MP3's, WMA's, (whatever format for that matter), and share it with the planet, because of some pay-per-go service or whatever. :P

neufuse said,
use torrents? you mean use one of the easiest ways to get caught downloading music? ha...


I have personally never downloaded from torrents and probably never would because of the Pirate Bay ordeal (and way before that), but besides the point, there are plenty of other means. :P

The_Decryptor said,
Yeah, illegally download songs to stop you getting sued when things are stolen from you.

Great plan!

One of these days you might take the blindfold off.

Yep, I don't get the issue at all. Don't share = no problems.

And for those who talk about stolen iPods/computers...well there is this thing called a police report that will protect you from being harassed by the RIAA if somehow your purchased songs ever ended up on P2P.

I'm all for it. If you aren't behaving illegally where is the problem, and this only acts as a further deterrent to uploaders... for now anyway.

This article should have been titled:

The Hypocrisy of Music Thieves Unveiled

People who want something for nothing are quickly running out of excuses, aren't they...

Not really. People who want something for nothing don't have to justify themselves. They'll just do it and get on with it.

Seems decent enough - you can use it on as many devices as you want, even burn it to cds for your friends, etc .. if you're not sharing it with the world then why worry?

On a side note, is more music likeyl to be added to iTunes Plus anytime soon?
And yes, people moaning are simply music thiefs, get over it!

Agree with what most people have said on here. The only people bitching are those that pirate the music. You don't share your music, your details stay safe. What the hell else do they expect Apple and the music industry to do? Just setup a bittorrent site to anonymously distribute albums for free?!

I feel that record labels have had it too easy for a long time but this is pretty darn fair IMHO and an incentive to keep you from distributing the music.

I think they should have a unique code on them or something... I don't really like the idea of email and name... but... but.. I'm fine with a code which only apple can read or somewhat.... fine with that

Um then don't purchase the song from itunes. Go elseware. Who says you have to buy from iTunes. Lazy people. Plus don't be a moron and use file sharing programs to upload it to pirate land. Better yet just pay for a napster/rhapsody/yahoo music subscriptioin and then use a drm stipper if u r that worried. Better yet sell your computer... Just my thoughts

Mikee

LMAO, No because they're MP4s! You cant recode them

I think this is a great idea, I have no idea why people would be kicking up about it, only n00bs that use P2P are going to have problems

Yes you can re encode them but everytime you do that you lose more quality of the original encoding. For example you buy the acc/mp4 song via iTunes and then burn it to disk. Then re import as mp3 or wma. I don't know why on earth you would want wma though.

Cheers,

Mikee

Bitch, bitch, bitch, bitch, bitch.

If Apple removes THIS, then they'll complain that music isn't sold with a personalised thank-you note from the band.

Some fear that should these tracks make their way onto file sharing sites that the original owners could easily be identified.


Define "some." I am getting tired of these vague words used to create controversy where it does not exist. "Some" could be a crack head homeless guy in NY or Bill Gates. How about give me a polling sample?

What would be the point of buying the music from iTunes if you plan on hosting it on P2P??
The music on P2P is already available for free and of high quality, it doesn't make any sense why someone would complain about this unless they planned on buying the music and setting it up to download on P2P.

Other than that there is nothing to complain about, if you want to be an idiot and upload it to P2P, it's cheaper to buy the CD and then convert it to High Quality yourself and then offer it to P2P, No personal information is included. Doesn't take much of a scholar to figure that out, Damn. Hell even convert it to FLAC if you're so excited about it...

Just my 2 cents.

Oh and another thing, you're not tied to just one company (i.e. EMI)

You don't get the reference to the famous apple commercial run during the Super Bowl of 1984 that was based on the concept of the book?

Im glad apple finally removed DRM. People should be happy and stop crying about information that has always been present in the file. If you share your music over p2p thats your own damn fault. Even more your fault for getting caught, idiots!

even though the details can be changed easily with a hex editor, i think anybody who does this should exercise caution. we don't know what little snippets of information are encrypted within the file.

the fundamental weakness however is that these files can simply be re-encoded as something different, thereby removing anything which may be hidden within the file.

i don't know why they bothered doing it embedding anything in there it's a pointless.

uh huh...and someone can 'hex' in your information...and spread that song across the internet...and while your 'going broke' trying to convince the RIAA you've been set up...then its too late....your family is standing in the bean soup line.

These poor souls, can't even illegal share the tracks without being identified!, how are they going to manage...

I've had nothing but bad luck with iTunes since the update. I downloaded 3 albums yesterday. Well 1 still hasn't finished downloading. The other 2 downloaded fine, then when I restarted iTunes a few of the songs from each are missing from my library, although they synced to my ipod. Still waiting on a reply from Apple.

in other news though... if every same song was put on the net with different users info... each one has a unique hash then... makes it a LOT easier to track someone's sharing ability and where it went for a court case... now they can really say you distributed 100,000 copies, now pay for each *LOL* all they have to do is search for its hash on the network of their choice once they determin you are shareing a file you bought, then count the results...

so then, I guess if you have kids..then you have to tell them...NO? you can't listen to MY song...get real and think about the issues this could cause...because some lame greedy RIAA thinks you have money to waste and your kids don't need a life because your 'Broke' now......sheeeeesh

jwjw1 said,
so then, I guess if you have kids..then you have to tell them...NO? you can't listen to MY song...get real and think about the issues this could cause...because some lame greedy RIAA thinks you have money to waste and your kids don't need a life because your 'Broke' now......sheeeeesh

note that you can still share songs illegally (or legally, for that matter), made possible through the removal of DRM. It's just that your name is tied to it. this is a measure aimed at squashing people who put songs up on P2P, rather than preventing "your kids" from downloading and listening to "your music" because "you're broke."

jwjw1 said,
so then, I guess if you have kids..then you have to tell them...NO? you can't listen to MY song...get real and think about the issues this could cause...because some lame greedy RIAA thinks you have money to waste and your kids don't need a life because your 'Broke' now......sheeeeesh
Haha, what.

It still is DRM free, you just can't share it over file-sharing networks.

I'm sure you can send it to your kids other than through a publicly accessible space/

I was just playing around with editing the name and email address (using a HEX editor) in the file and it worked. Just a test.

Apple get my info all the time, when I install OSX, buy their products, use itunes etc...

Apple have never been a problem, even their apps (most of them) and os dont use serials.

Its either a legacy itunes thing, such as matching, downloading from an ipod purchased tracks back to a computer. Like it does not when I put my ipod into my works computer and i downloads my purchased music from the ipod at home. Both itunes are registered to me.

I would believe thats how its knows. Tags in the mp3's.

Apple wouldnt bother chasing people using P2P.

The RIAA would though. Suing someone for sharing their purchased DRM free music, like they do know.

Maybe thats a good thing though, no DRM but a chance people can find out who actually distributed the original file.

That might put people off sharing.

Like Apple is going to sit there all day downloading illegal files to find out if you were sharing stuff bought from their store.

osirisX said,
Like Apple is going to sit there all day downloading illegal files to find out if you were sharing stuff bought from their store.

Apple? no... the RIAA? yes!

they have servers that just sit there all day watching this stuff, downloading files for "cases"...

The_Decryptor said,
I can, AAC sounds much better (as it should)

FLAC is a wonderful format. So is OGG.

Also, you would need to have some fantastic speakers to actually tell the difference. Most people don't. And not only that, but you would have to have some fantastic hearing also. Which is also rare. At the most, the difference you are hearing isn't quality per se, but rather a difference in encoding that can affect certain wavelengths and such. Bass may be more prominent or it has a warmer sound. Kind of like those people that argue for digital versus analog components, where it is a matter of preference in the sound rather than quality.

^^
What about the actual music you listen to.
I like death metal, I could listen to it through any speakers/headphones and it sounds fine! :P

its not like this information is your address, post code, email address, username and password... Probably only a id number that ties you with your itunes account and pc which has always been there.

Would you people PLEASE stop speculating and actually read? There are exactly two things that are embedded in the files: your name and your e-mail address (as associated with the iTunes Store account).

Yeah, I finally read it. I made the same comment further up. I was hoping that Apple had some sense but apparently that's not true. Thanks for clearing that up.

if you guys are scared about this then you should be scared about MS Word files that do similar things also.... in the old binary word files it stored you computer serial, your name if provided, and all kinds of other system information that COULD be used to tie your computer to a document if needed... sure its not as easy as the iTunes stuff but they are a service and keep track of who owns what... but if you registered yoru copy of office they can tie it to you in a snap... if you did something wrong with a file made in it

Except there's not much demand on P2P sites for your 5th grade paper on the South African Spotted Jellyfish so no one cares. The people that are making a big deal about this and citing privacy and such are just kiddies upset that they started salivating when they heard "no DRM" and now realize they can't go download iTunes songs over P2P. Pathetic.

This was Office 9x/2000 only, and Ms released a stand alone utility to purge this information from files.

This is how they did catch the creator of the melesia virus... and the utility came out right after how they caught become public.

I don't see the issue here. I thought the issue was about being able to play the tracks on multiple devices, which users now can. I've no time for petty thieves whining because the law gets in their way.

When the tracks are burned to cd does the information go with it? The information could possibly be transfered to the cd as well. They could call it a feature of Itunes...CDs can hold metadata too.

you got a good point SniperX... BUT, the way i see it is if they have all this bs in the files you get from itunes, then whats the point in getting them from there when you can get the real audio cd for basically the same price (maybe cheaper in some cases overall?) and is higher quality to, PLUS you can rip your own mp3's from the audio cd's and at a bitrate of YOUR choosing... so whats the point in using itunes? ... cause the most i would want to pay for a full album on itunes is like 5-6 dollars or so ... otherwise you would be better off paying around 15 dollars for the real audio cd... cause once the price of those tunes on itunes gets near the price of the real audio cd... it's almost stupid to get the itunes songs. but i guess theres alot of dumb people out there that dont realize this (im not saying your dumb, but u get my point) but they probably just like the "convenience" of just getting the songs and putting em onto there mp3 (IPOD) players without having to rip the songs etc... either that or they just dont know how to rip songs from real audio cd's (im betting on the latter, lol)

So to me there really no point in using itunes cause at a dollar a song thats rather expensive if you plan on getting alot of songs.... but i guess at the same time theres a price (premium) to pay for getting individual songs instead of full cd's.

bottom line (for me) = ill never use itunes or any other mp3 related services myself. atleast not until they get the prices at much better rates.... cause the MOST i would "consider" paying for a mp3 album is HALF the price of the original cd AT THE MOST.... plus it's gotta be 192bit rate minimum to.

apple were trying to sneak that info in so they could find out who was sharing files, looks like they've been found out lol

The information has always been in songs purchased from iTunes, and it's not exactly hidden. It's displayed on the "Get Info" window in iTunes for every purchased song.

Ok having full name email address and account information is a bad idea. Perhaps a code which is connected to the account, which has no other use would be a better idea.

It's more a matter of privacy then anything. I have no qualms with Apple wanting to prevent these files from being re-distributed, but no file is ever safe of other people accessing it. It's possible hackers with trojans would be able to access that information from the files on your computer, or in more serious situation, if someone has these songs on their iPod for example, and they get mugged and have it stolen, now not only does the criminal have your iPod, they potentially have the ability to get your name, address and so fourth. This could prevent people from reporting thefts to the police in fear of retribution from the mugger or anybody he may be associated with.

Just use a code in the file that only Apple has the ability to use, if they need to track where the files came from.

No they don't, the files don't include your itms password.

Now if somebody steals your computer, whether or not they have access to your music should be the least of your worries.

Ash said,
now not only does the criminal have your iPod, they potentially have the ability to get your name, address and so fourth.

Paranoid BS. The files have your name and e-mail address, that's all. Not your physical address or any other information.

As for your mugger retribution theory, how is it any different than before? If you have ever bought a song from iTunes, that information is there. This is nothing new at all, and it is not and has never been hidden. The only reason that people are bitching about it now is because they planned on sharing the songs that they downloaded. End of story. If you claim otherwise, you are a liar, plain and simple.

I really understand the logics behind being able to identify the buyer if the buyer spread the file over P2P networks. But I'm against having my name and my email in a file, for the same reason I always strip my .doc files from any metadata... Why on earth do I need those files with MY personal info?

oh boo hoo, you dont like it tough... you have the ability to put the files on other devices now if wanted... if you really dont like it then get a tool to remove the info... they will be out sooner or later...

Printers encode serial numbers on every page printed...
everything has serial numbers anymore that can tie you to something...

this is no different then evreything else... you comit a crime with one of them, they can trace you, you comit a crime with this they can trace you...

testman said,
But from what I understand, normal DRM-included files have it as well. So why the relevation now?

I was just going to post this!

It has ALWAYS been standard practice for iTunes to include account information on EVERY file downloaded. You *do* have to sign into *your* account to download the file.

iTunes now offers *better* files to download, and yet people bitch about the NORMAL way the files are?

osirisX said,
I was going to post this as well. It's just sensationalist journalism.

Neowin - Where sensationalist journalism looks better

Some fear that should these tracks make their way onto file sharing sites that the original owners could easily be identified.

No kidding, lol

I really don't see what the problem is, The lack of DRM is designed to make it easier for you to use on all your devices with no problems. Not so that you can go and throw it up on file sharing networks.
Of course, I don't think it will take long for some coder somewhere to write a stripper for the files, removing all the personal data. (ah, just read that the BBC think the same heh)

Ssssh, people don't like reason around these parts.

The only reason somebody would be upset about this, is if somebody wanted to share these files on P2P or such.

The_Decryptor said,
Ssssh, people don't like reason around these parts.

The only reason somebody would be upset about this, is if somebody wanted to share these files on P2P or such.

There is more than that.. I personally wouldn't want to have my information identifiable within those files other than perhaps some customer ID that only makes sense to Apple. Using my name/email is a little unnecessary.

The_Decryptor said,
Ssssh, people don't like reason around these parts.

The only reason somebody would be upset about this, is if somebody wanted to share these files on P2P or such.

Well considering how many ipods get stolen every day..... do you think those people want a load of tracks on the player to give away personal details as an extra worry?
If the person who stole the ipod also gave the songs to everyone they know and THEN they find their way around the internet... you also have the worry that you are going to get into some kind of legal trouble.
Besides, the kind of people who actually buy music from itunes aren't the kind of people who upload the tracks to p2p sites. A few might do it at first "because they can". But that novelty will quickly wear off. The stuff available on itunes is probably already on p2p sites anyway.
In addition, Albums leak from sample CD's sent out by the labels.... nothing will be gained, be newer or be better by an uploaded 'itunes plus' track. That's why they are even releasing them in the first place. If they thought these are going to flood p2p they wouldn't release them.
I suspect they leave the information in the file because they always have and didn't think twice about it. They probably regard the file as their property still..... and the personal information is effective the licence to the content.

WICKO said,

There is more than that.. I personally wouldn't want to have my information identifiable within those files other than perhaps some customer ID that only makes sense to Apple. Using my name/email is a little unnecessary.

+1

joeydoo said,

Well considering how many ipods get stolen every day..... do you think those people want a load of tracks on the player to give away personal details as an extra worry?
If the person who stole the ipod also gave the songs to everyone they know and THEN they find their way around the internet... you also have the worry that you are going to get into some kind of legal trouble.
...

No you don't, report your iPod stolen (as you would any way), and they wouldn't sue you (as if they would any way)

And nobody complained about the metadata in the old files, they are only complaining about it in the new files, because they want to share them but can get caught now.

Yeah, that would be great. There would be a program made to remove said meta data....or edit it. That would be fun, wouldn't it? So hopefully they didn't put your name in the file, but a number that refers to a name...oh joy. If you guys don't mind your information out there....good lord. Your paying extra for the file just to be tracked? Sorry, I'm not buying.


But go ahead and argue that the only people that get caught will be the criminals. It's not like that arguments flawed or anything.

The_Decryptor said,
No you don't, report your iPod stolen (as you would any way), and they wouldn't sue you (as if they would any way)

And nobody complained about the metadata in the old files, they are only complaining about it in the new files, because they want to share them but can get caught now.

this is not entirely true.

First off, I don't have an iPod and will never purchase from iTunes, so I don't really care. Its just that I would have a problem, if I did buy from them, if my name and email were embedded in the files. Say, someone does steal my iPod, now they have my name/email. I like to keep those things private, as do many other people.

I really doubt anyone is upset about it due to the fact it can easily be removed. But we shouldn't have to bother in the first place. A simple customer ID would suffice.