back to article Pirates pee on Amazon's MP3 parade

Amazon.co.uk yesterday trumpeted the launch of its MP3 download service, but a group of upstart coders chose the same day to blow their own horn about a Firefox plugin linking the e-tailer's service to The Pirate Bay. The Amazon service is flogging albums from £3 and individual songs from 59p. However, the 'Pirates of the …

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  1. Matt Bradley
    Thumb Down

    STill think DRM is a bad idea?

    ^^^

    Pirate bay are legitimate music fans' worst enemy

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    FINALLY

    It's about damn time somone did this. After the Sony incident I've flat refused to pay £15 for a potential virus and I'm not parting with any money for something that won't be mine to use as I see fit.

    I think I finally have something to buy for Christmas, a legitimate music collection!

  3. Paul

    This dose lend weight

    to the argument of theft... Although im alot of people will post in responce saying "well it will just be used by people who want to use Amazon to surch for stuff, but would never buy the music".

    At least they cant use the "well If it was DRM free..." argument any more.

    Face it noonw beleaves your lies any more. The whole trying to convince the world that you are not doing anything wrond, and you are infact a fighter for artists rights, showd that up as a lie.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Huh.

    So a company provides people with what they claim to want: DRM free tracks at a reasonable price..and pirates still steal it.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    So the big corporates start to play fair...

    ...and the illegal file sharers piss on everyone's chips. "Artistic project" my arse. It's theft pure and simple.

  6. dervheid
    Pirate

    World Record?

    What category?

    Biggest 'collection' of freeloading bastards?

    Longest running "Up Yours" to the Music Industry?

    Loved the idea of the plugin though. A good poke in the eye for amazon.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Happy

    Merry xmas from Amazon

    "This artistic project addresses the topic of current media distribution models vs. current culture and technical possibilities."

    Hohoho! What a sneaky way to 'address the topic'.

    Those clever rascals...

  8. Fred

    Patents

    Doesn't this infringe on Amazon's single click to (not) buy patent?

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    They're almost there...

    ...so close to a legal download model I will use. I'm still hesitating because I feel slightly cheated that they won't give me a FLAC version (even if their quality is a good baseline (much better than i'mlameTunes), those discarded bits have still been stolen from me!). But at least they're charging reasonable rates- rather than more than I'd have to pay to get the physical thing from play.com: at least they're admitting the maufacturing/distribution costs are significantly lower, and passing that saving on to us! DRM is dead... long live FLAC! One day anyway...

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    3 million songs

    and the first 2 searches I do return with "sorry we can't find those, but here are the really expensive import versions" le sigh...

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Stop

    This is going too far.

    Had Amazon's service been DRM'ed to hell I'd be cheering this plugin and might even have got it myself. But Amazon are playing fair, making non-DRM'ed files that will play on pretty much anything, this is not how their service should be treated.

    I'll be the first to admit, I've used TPB and similar to obtain music, some from artists I'd never heard of before, and as a result I've added a significant section to my CD collection, some imported from Japan and HK.

  12. Joe Cooper

    Go Amazon!

    I hope they're successful. Legit, DRM-Free MP3s? Instant win! I might switch from iTunes.

  13. Ferry Boat

    I can play the piano, piano...

    The Amazon site is pretty good. Reasonable price, I can put the track where I want and a fairly broad range. They even have Professor Longhair tracks. Now Christmas for the little children will be complete. Oh, how merrily they'll dance around the Christmas tree to the sound of 'She Ain't Got No Hair'.

    It's a shame that the site is being exploited by these 'artists'. I suspect most people won't get the add-on or even know about it so it won't take much business away from Amazon.

  14. Tom Richardson

    It's not exactly clear...

    Does this plugin just search for the same track on the pirate bay and direct you to a torrent of it, or actually allow you to steal it directly from Amazon?

  15. David Shepherd
    Happy

    amazon gets taste of own medicine?

    Ignoring all the issues over legality of MP3s from pirate bay there is an interesting twist to this story in that Amazon is getting a taste of its own medicine ... recently they were talking about a scheme where you could be browsing in a bookshop and see a book you wanted but instead of buying at the shop you could send a text message to Amazon with the ISBN code for the book and receive a reply giving the price Amazon then a reply to that would place the order with Amazon. So, Amazon thought they could use ordinary bookshops to provide a marketing tool for their sales. So its very amusing to see someone turning the tables on them and providing a service where you browse on Amazon and then get told where to find the product cheaper!

  16. Ferry Boat

    Christmas is cancelled

    They don't 'deliver' the MP3s outside the UK. I suppose it will have to be back to the old scratched Slade 45.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Unhappy

    But Officer, it's just just a few bits....

    ....and bytes!

  18. Mostor Astrakan
    Thumb Up

    Cool. I'll go look at Amazon.

    I've never denied that musos have kids to feed, too. The only reason I haven't been buying OR downloading music is that current offerings are crap. The reasons I won't buy DRM-encrusted "offerings" are that it either tries to make me run Windows, tries to keep me from actually listening to it, buggers up my system, or any and all of the above. Trying to keep my music collection to ransom is also reason to decline. Musicians don't seem to realise how easy it is to do without their products.

    If Amazon were to hide a message in their files saying "We sold this to Mostor Astrakan", I would not mind at all. I may let someone else listen to it, but If they want it, they should go to the original source.

    These "download it for free" pissants are, not to put too fine a point on it, lying. Music is NOT a free commodity - people produce it for a living. They're already getting shafted by the music industry, they don't need to be shafted by the fanbase as well. With sold MP3s, the most important stumbling blocks are no longer there.

  19. Hugh_Pym
    Stop

    copying not theft

    Jeez, how many times. Theft is when you deprive the legitimate owner of something. This is illegal copying - copyright abuse. And as for Pirates, Ask the crews of ships at the Horn of Africa about Pirates.

    Before you complain about the poor artists remember Warner music made $167 million profit last quarter and Simon Cowell is a Multi millionaire on the back of such crap as Sonia, Five and Robson and Jerome. It ain't the public how are ripping off the artists.

    The criminal gangs are involved to make money that is why they copy actual CDs and sell them to arseholes at carboot sales.

  20. Nick Palmer
    Thumb Up

    @"Huh" & "So the big corporates start to play fair... "

    Couldn't agree more. I don't object to paying for music, I don't even object to buying downloads, I just wanted them to be freely usable across my devices once I'd bought them. Amazon provide that, and then this bunch decide to fuck up the deal. "“This artistic project addresses the topic of current media distribution models vs. current culture and technical possibilities,”" Yes, we've established that with most distribution models it is still possible to be a thieving, freeloading Cretinous Useless Negligible Tosser. Now go and "address the topic" of throwing your useless selves under a steamroller, you wankers.

  21. Chronos Silver badge
    Coat

    Re: FINALLY

    Sadly, the freetards are spoiling it already. Just WTF is the point? Yet again, we have two competing extremists making life awfully difficult for the rest of us. Whatever the freetards say, recording quality music (if such a thing exists these days) costs money, so those costs and some profit MUST be recovered for music to be a viable career choice. Whatever the Industry Ass. mob say, DRM is obstructive and demeaning to their customers. So, freetards to the left of us, arseholes to the right...

    My coat, please. I've had enough of this fight. All I ever wanted was to be able to stick legitimate, paid-for audio files on my music partition and be able to play them myself (not share them with anyone - I'm not a great believer in this altruistic "what's mine is yours" bollocks) anywhere. It's back to buying polycarbonate and spending half an hour making them into Ogg Vorbis files for me. I know format shifting is technically illegal right now (in the UK. The US has fair use, we don't but there is change in the pipeline) but it's far, far better than either of the two extremes.

    By the way, am I breaking the law if I make those files available to family members on their machines in the same household (netgroup secured NFS with ACLs)? I always wondered, because what you pay for when you buy polycarbonate Frizbees is a licence to reproduce the audio for personal use, leaving aside the format shifting being technically illegal in itself.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    Piss on Chips

    I'm what you lot like to call a "freetard" I use Linux, I want my music drm free so I can play it where and when I like, but I have no objection to paying for said music either by buying a cd/dvd or as a lot of us have long waited for unencumbered mp3 download. After all who can complain at 3 quid for a whole Led Zepp album?

    A company decides to do so and what happens a bunch of selfish, ignorant wankers have a turdspurt and kick em in the bollocks.

    Paris because even she is bright enough to know if you want a shag don't ballkick first.

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Playing fair?

    They may not have DRM but they are still not 'playing fair'. The online tracks are still horrendously overpriced and at lower than CD quality. Why do they think people will pay more for less just because it is online?

    Also the comments here seem to be hugely onesided. How many are from Amazon/RIAA cronies I wonder?

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Stop

    Re: So the big corporates start to play fair...

    "...and the illegal file sharers piss on everyone's chips. "Artistic project" my arse. It's theft pure and simple."

    file sharing != theft

    Record companies are just pissed because their nice, century-old way of making money has started to fail. Unfortunately for them, modern technology has made their product easy to duplicate, but since the file sharers are not making money from these copies, it should never be classed as illegal. It just means it is time for a new business model. Think about it: why are you supporting record companies? All they do and ever have done is cream profits from artists in exchange for a bit of promotion. Hardly, like stealing from a charity organization, is it? Leeches that make money from those with talent, would be a more fitting job title.

    In my view, the death of record companies, in their current form, will only lead to the reduction in the number of mediocre, me-too, bands and fat cats' profits, both of which could never be classed as a bad thing! Perhaps the big name artists will earn less in the future, but who cares? Maybe, just maybe, they are overvalued and producing a handful of albums over a few years isn't actually worth hundreds of millions of dollars?

  25. Michael
    Stop

    Music is free!

    If you write it yourself, and on a cracked edition of Cubase, a bit of wavelab here and there. Or if you want something a bit simpler Acid by Sonic Foundry!

    I will neverever use DRM on any of my own tracks

  26. Ken Hagan Gold badge

    Tempted...

    ...to download and run a plug-in from an untrusted source that lets me download a whole load of other stuff from another untrusted source, about whom the only thing I know is that they are *definitely* on the wrong side of the law.

    Now THAT's tempting.

  27. Peter Lee

    Prince on Amazon MP3 downloads

    Just noticed that Prince's "Lovesexy" album is treated as a single due to it being sequenced as a single track, therefore it is 79p.

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Flame

    Hooray

    More free tunes off the interweb! And now even easier to find what you want off good ol piratebay! yes I am a freetard!

  29. Craig

    Finally?

    Play.com, 7digital and even Tesco of all people have been offering plain MP3s for a while now... and at a higher bitrate as well :)

  30. Richard Kay
    Alert

    propaganda - don't be taken in

    Copying is not theft. Copying in breach of copyright is just that. Theft deprives the original owner of something they had before the theft occurred and copying something does not do this. Piracy is armed robbery on the high seas. Misusing terms which mean one thing to express disapproval of a very different thing is propaganda pure and simple.

    A few years ago copyright law controlled the actions only of the few who owned expensive printing plant. The majority of us have not been consulted until this matter has been debated and consultation is carried out through media which doesn't spew propaganda while reporting the issue one sidedly because it has a vested interest in the matter.

    Don't accept taxation imposed through corrupt law bought by lobbyists without representation of the interests of the majority which wants reasonable but not excessive remuneration for the creative minority which can benefit us through their work. The rights of the majority not to have our communications spied upon and controlled for this purpose must also take priority. 25 million downloaders have not been fooled by mass media propaganda which is not going to present this issue responsibly, fairly or truthfully at any time before Turkeys vote for Christmas.

    For UK residents and citizens who think copyright terms excessive you have an opportunity to say so by signing this petition:

    http://petitions.number10.gov.uk/ShortenCopyright/

  31. Iain

    Time up Freetards

    I've done it myself - utilised P2P and Pirate Bay for the odd song, precisely because of the DRM issue. Can't justify that now though. Just wish that Amazon had used a better bitrate...

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Pirate

    blame the music industry

    i blame the music/film/game industry for the amount of piracy. i mean if prices were lower then more people would go and buy the tracks. ive just looked at the price of Brittany Spears circus on amazon and it is £7 in the usa, £9 in the uk, £11 in Canada, £14 in Japan and £15 in the Euro zone (fr, de). all for the same product. if it was given to the artist then i wouldn't mind but it mostly goes to the record company. itunes pays the artist about 8p a track.

    i have used illegal methods for collecting music but the main reason is because i wanted to find new bands and that is what i did, i found a band that were unsigned and made a independent album that was made available to me and i listened to it because i liked the name of the band, (my darling murder) and liked the music. they then split up (cos the lead singer's girlfriend) and i have seen 2 of the band members new bands live 5 times in the last year (getting them money) i also have various merch from them as well as 3 albums (all getting them money) so haveing their album that i wouldn't have got anyway pirated has done them good in the long run. there are also lots of other non uk bands that i would never have heard of that i have also done this with. so piracy can also do good because people will actually listen to the music without consideration of "is this worth it?"

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Flame

    @Anonymous Coward

    "In my view, the death of record companies, in their current form, will only lead to the reduction in the number of mediocre, me-too, bands and fat cats' profits, both of which could never be classed as a bad thing! "

    I'm currently playing in band for a very talented singer whose (independent) distributor is struggling to sell music legitimately in any form. the likelihood is that, thanks to ignorant opinions like your own, there won't be ANY music industry, independent or otherwise, and artists will eventually have to stop writing and performing music apart from as a hobby.

    Ultimately, the only way for a professional musician to make money in your free downloads for-all economy, is to join a function band.

    Is that *really* what you want?

  34. David Barr
    Thumb Up

    They're nearly there

    All they need to do now is offer the option of a FLAC, and I'll buy off them. The prices seem right. The Prince album at 79p is a rip off, you'd need to pay me considerable amounts of money to listen to that.

  35. Daniel Garcia
    Flame

    Copyright has the same moral ground than monopolies

    An artist should gets money for his original piece of art/work( in music case gigs), not for reproduce copies of any past one, or by donations/sponsors; in a couple of centuries we transform artirts in monopolistic whore. any form of art in my opinion should be a aestetic impresion and its own mean and end. Now that we created this monopolistic pantomime call copyright, culture has become a product itself. Beyong entertainment ,any form of art is Culture and the right for everyone to enjoy and embrace Culture is higher than the right of profit.

    A real artist should be happy that this art is enjoy/simpatetic for the maximum number of fellows humans, regarless profit.

  36. Martin
    Thumb Up

    Well, as a freetard

    (As defined by El Reg) I think Amazon have large balls to do this, it's what people have been crying out for. I've downloaded in the past from p2p programs, simply because tracks aren't available elsewhere. I've looked on Amazon, they are available. Well done guys! Now, as above, if only they start to use FLAC, we'll have dogs and cats living together, peace on earth, goodwill towards all men, women, and others, etc.

  37. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I love that line they all toe!

    "Oh yeah, well it was say 50c a track and couple of dollars for an entire album I would buy, not rip it off!" - I never believed it then and I am 99.9% sure it will be proved true now the opportunity is actually there.

    "Oh the online stores never sell my type of music!" - Well they don't sell my preferred music, but that doesn't give me the right to rip it off. It's even more important that you support your favourite niche music genre, as they have a lot more to lose and so do you, every time you rip some poor, next-to-penniless muso trying to make a living!

    Me, I grew up buying thrash imports on on vinyl and tape and I still love the feel of a solid CD in hands when I pay over my cash. If you buy your music direct from the musicians in hard format, you know you made a difference and there is a strong chance they will be able to carry on working.

  38. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Yes !

    Finaly an easier way to steal my music. Love this.

    If its free its good.If its free and stolen its even better.

  39. Dick Emery
    Pirate

    Not working anymore

    Looks like Amazon have already stopped it from working. Well I don't see any download for free links anyhow. Just testing for purely scientific purposes of course.

  40. darkmooink
    Pirate

    piracy is good (for some things)

    im a freetard but i buy something if i think its worth it. i have spent over £100 on 2 bands from 2 album downloads (1 i have bought and the other i am unable to buy due to not being sold anywhere but would if i could) because i liked them so much

  41. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Yaaaay - Ow...

    Oki - I don't generally download music at all (though I _do_ stream), the odd exceptions being things like NINs "Ghosts part I" or other legitimate free releases - and generally as a precursor to buying the album (on CD).

    So, a download service comes along that _might_ have what I want at a reasonable price (pay a little less for the loss in bit-rate, lack of physical backup and cover art) oki fine...

    I figured - right, nobody has to physically publish or store this, it's a download, so they should have a bigger catalogue... and maybe/hopefully one day they will. My first search on "Panzer AG" returned 0 MP3s, oki, I deliberately chose a reasonably obscure band, but it _did_ return 3 CDs, 2 of which are import. Similar story with ":wumpscut:" and it got better with "Zombie Girl" as they're charging 79p for a load of tracks that the artist actually released for free (at a lower bit-rate, but I own the CDs anyway).

  42. Mark

    re: STill think DRM is a bad idea?

    Yes.

    What's changed the deal for those who would pay if the deal was good enough?

    Or are you the sort who thinks that just because someone else commits a crime it's OK for you to do so too?

  43. Mark

    re: So the big corporates start to play fair...

    Is it? What are the terms. I haven't read them and I suppose you haven't either.

    So how do we know it is trying to play fair?

    They aren't asking for reasonable copyright lengths. They aren't asking for reasonable copyright laws. I don't see them trying to play fair.

  44. W
    Unhappy

    Let's take a look...

    MP3 albums for £3. All fine and dandy.

    Let's take a look the first ten items on my lengthy amazon wishlist, and see if I can bag a few on the cheap...

    ____________________________

    "The Holy Pictures" by David Holmes

    MP3: £6.90

    New CD: £6.98 (delivered)

    New+Used: £6.20 (new, delivered)

    ____________________________

    "Velocifero" by Ladytron

    MP3: £6.99

    New CD: £8.78 (delivered)

    New+Used: £7.71 (new, delivered)

    ____________________________

    "Trout Mask Replica" by Captain Beefheart

    MP3: N/A

    New CD: £7.98 (delivered)

    New+Used: £5.46 (new, delivered)

    ____________________________

    "Hurricane: the Best of" by the Prisoners"

    MP3: N/A

    New CD: £7.78 (delivered)

    New+Used: £7.71 (new, delivered)

    ____________________________

    "The Blue God" by Martina Topley-Bird

    MP3: N/A

    New CD: £8.78 (delivered)

    New+Used: £7.13 (new, delivered)

    ____________________________

    "Stainless Style" by Neon Neon

    MP3: N/A

    New CD: £8.98 (delivered)

    New+Used: £7.20 (new, delivered)

    ____________________________

    "Boss" by Magik Markers

    MP3: £6.99

    New CD: £9.98 (delivered)

    New+Used: £5.16 (used - like new, delivered)

    ____________________________

    "Overpowered" by Roisin Murphy

    MP3: £7.99

    New CD: £4.98 (delivered - if you spend 2p more, but I'll let that slide)

    New+Used: £5.54 (new, delivered)

    ____________________________

    "In Sides" by Orbital

    MP3: £7.99

    New CD: £10.29 (delivered)

    New+Used: £6.70 (used - like new, delivered)

    ____________________________

    "I Am a Bird Now" by Antony & The Johnsons

    MP3: £6.99

    New CD: £9.98 (delivered)

    New+Used: £7.45 (used - very good, delivered)

    ____________________________

    10 albums, nothing especially obscure, all the kind of thing you'd expect to find in a decent HMV for £13.99 or whatever.

    Scores on the doors...

    2 for MP3 (...out of the 6 occasions the option was available, so 33% at best)

    1 for Amazon New CD (...but only due to my concession re: delivery - you'd have to buy something else to get the free delivery)

    7 for New+Used Amazon Marketplace (6 x "new", 1 x "used -like new")

    Verdict...Amazon Marketplace wins out again. Nothing new there. It's how I've bought the majority of my CDs for years. And, if you can wait the 2 days for arrival, you get a CD artefact as source and backup for a rip to the format of your choice rather than an ephemeral file that you're responsible for archiving and backing up 'cause there's no option to re-download.

    I've been saying this for ages, but MP3 albums are not worth more than £5. The market will not bear it. Allofmp3.com knew this from the off and as soon as a legit version is available, it will have things wrapped up.

    As for "Hugh_Pym"'s comment that "Simon Cowell is a Multi millionaire on the back of such crap as Sonia, Five and Robson and Jerome" - a) I don't think PirateBay users are DL-ing Sonia, Five and Robson and Jerome somehow, and b) I think the X-Factor TV rights have made made him the most dosh. Pay up, ya scoundrel.

  45. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Hugh_Pym and others

    The OED says:

    Theft is defined as the act of stealing. Stealing is to take [someone's property] without permission or legal right without intending to return.

    A pirate is either the thing with the boats or: A person who appropriates or reporduces the work of another for profit without permission, usually in contravention of patent or copyright.

    Let this be an end to the attempting to justify ripping people off by symantics argument, oh and don't try to argue that the copyright is not the property of the person who owns it.

  46. Sean Baggaley
    Flame

    @Daniel Garcia

    I love the architectural ouvré of Nash and his contemporaries -- you'll see examples all over London. It has wonderful aesthetics. Does this mean I should be allowed to live in any of their houses for free? One person's property is another person's "art". Where do you draw the line?

    The whole "Art should be FREE!" nonsense is complete and utter cobblers. The very concept of "art" in the modern sense is an entirely invented one. Michelangelo didn't paint the Sistine Chapel for the price of some pizza and biscotti. He was PAID to create it. And quite handsomely at that. Ditto for all the other major works of art most of us are familiar with. Even Charles Dickens famously wrote that nobody writes for free. Creativity is f*cking hard work. (Watch this week's "Screenwipe" if you want to see what writing is really like. Best writers-on-writing programme I've seen in years. It's not all lounging around drinking lattes.)

    Art is work. You want access to the work I produce? Fine: Pay up, or fuck off.

  47. James
    Thumb Down

    It's still

    MP3 though.

    Why?? I guess that's the only format lay-people know and think they can play on their 'mp3' player. Mp3 is outdated/poor!

  48. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Don't like amazon? Don't like their bitrates? Try 7digital.com then!

    7digital.com have UK legal MP3 downloads from most major labels *and* an impressively wide selection. Many of those MP3's are also available at 320k, which I think is more than adequate for most users. Of course it's not free, but it fulfills most of my music requirements the vast majority of the time.

  49. Piro
    Thumb Down

    Stupid fuckups

    I pirate just as bad as you might expect, but this is a stupid extension. Piss on some company that isn't playing fair.

    Amazon is a model of how to do it right: DRM free MP3s at very reasonable prices, so for gods sake don't destroy their position in the market unless you simply want music companies to go back to horrible DRM. Support companies when they do it right.

  50. darkmooink

    Mp3 is outdated/poor???

    so what should we use that is as universally recognised?

  51. Anonymous Coward
    Flame

    @ AC

    "Ultimately, the only way for a professional musician to make money in your free downloads for-all economy, is to join a function band.

    Is that *really* what you want?"

    I see you've missed my point. There will always be a demand for contemporary music and since we live in capitalist times people will be able to earn a living from it. I was merely stating that the current system might be forced to change, due to technology. How do you think hard-backed encyclopaedia sales have been since the introduction of the internet? What about all those poor horse-drawn cart makers after cars hit the market? Technology generates wealth, but at the same time, inevitably and beautifully, culls those businesses involved in the "old way" of doing things. Just because one group has managed to exploit a particular market for generations does NOT give them the right to that market in perpetuity. Think of it another way - those involved in the record industry should be f-ing grateful that they've been able to make so much money, so easily for so long. If they lack the innovation to compete in the modern market then I'm sorry but it's good riddance. Survival of the fittest and all that.

    Who knows, artists that struggle under the current model for music distribution might even find things easier in the next one?

  52. Daniel Garcia
    Stop

    Re: Sean Baggaley

    as i said before, artist should get pay for his original work. all your case( exc. Dickens) are original works, and should be paid.

    how much? usually originals of recordings, manuscript or any artistic work from a laureated artist flech considerable sums and people pay good money to go to see bands. if nobody wants to buy your (original) art or you dont get enough to do a full living from it, dont blame the copyright breacher.

  53. Anonymous Coward
    Happy

    @ AC re: @ AC re: @ AC ... :)

    "I see you've missed my point."

    I see you missed /MY/ point too!

    I wasn't referring to one of the "old way" major labels: My example referenced a small, independent music labels who can't sell either physical media, OR downloads.

    The sad fact is that operations like Pirate Bay are not doing anybody any favours in the long run. Let's put a slightly different perspective on some of those previous comments:

    "Unfortunately for them, modern technology has made their product easy to duplicate, but since the file sharers are not making money from these copies,

    ...No, but neither does the artist, and they lose the ability to sell their product in the face of a free (in your world, legal) alternative.

    "it should never be classed as illegal"

    ...Can I have your car keys? I'd like to give your car to the poor and needy.

    ...

    "There will always be a demand for contemporary music"

    ...provided it is free to download.

    "and since we live in capitalist times people will be able to earn a living from it"

    ...provided that 50% of £0 > £0.

  54. blue
    Thumb Down

    Dear Rubbish Music

    Ok, so they got rid of the DRM. Good job!

    And they're selling 256Kbps MP3 albums for three quid? You just got a customer - for having the right price-point for the right product!

    What? Whaddayamean Physical Graffiti by Led Zeppelin MP3 album costs £11.98? (Insert numerous others selling for the same price as full-quality physical media)

    £3 is just the selected albums promo price?

    They still don't fucking get it.

  55. Daniel

    @Fraser

    So? Both you, and the OED are wrong. Theft is a legally defined term, the OED has nothing to do with it.

    This is not, by the way, an attempt to justify anything. It just frustrates me to no end when people abuse terminology.

    -Daniel

  56. David Haig
    Stop

    Copyright, DRM et al ....

    Let's look at this copyright issue. Can I assume that all the posters here work for the computer industry in one form or other? Can I also assume that we all regard programmers as 'creatives' ie they produce software for other users to use? How are we going to pay the programmers and distribute the software? We can sell through commercial distributors, through shareware sites and freeware distribution but its our choice on how we get the software to the users, and to some extent their choice as to how much they pay. In turn, the commercial software releases have a percentage of their price channeled into R&D both for that product and other programmes that may or may not see the light of day. Your shareware product will only be updated on demand and the freeware is 'as is' - it may have no support and just disappear. Our whole industry depends on these models to survive, and you will continue to pay for software until you don't use it anymore - so what's wrong with paying an artist everytime you use / download a piece of music?

    Whilst we have various methods of distributing the product, in the software business we can (and have) the most powerful DRM systems in the business - our users don't even own the product, just a licence to use the software - and we have the ability to lock out users who don't relicence the product and pay us a fee.

    At the end of the day copyright is there to stop people ripping other people off - if you'd written Visicalc wouldn't you want to be receiving the royalties from it for AS LONG AS PEOPLE BOUGHT IT? It's the same with music and writing - respect the people who've put the effort in to create something for you - and the support systems / companies that take a chance on their work and get the product to market.

  57. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    It is EVIL

    Leaving aside the lack of DRM, and the respectable bit rate.. It just doesn't have the tracks I want. I innocently searched for a track that had been stuck in my head ("Hide The Tears" by Kryptic Minds and Leon Switch), and it offered me some SHAKIN' STEVENS. ARGH!.

    Can I forward the cleaning and therapy bills to Amazon customer service, do you think?

    - The Invisible Opera Company

  58. Anonymous Coward
    Flame

    dear wankerasaurus:

    Do you have the downloaded song..............yes?

    did you purchase it...........................................no.

    did someone else purchase it.......................no

    did you pirate a copy.........................................yes

    did you deprive creator a sale.........................yes

    you're a thief.......................................................get over it and admit it

    from a former napster user...........so i'm posting anonymous 'cuz the riaa and their kin are the bigger wankers

  59. Carl
    Flame

    Holy shit...

    Does anyone actually read the fecking articles?

    All they have done is inject a link button into an Amazon page.

    All they have done is turn the following steps:

    1. Browse Amazon for some music

    2. Open another tab in your browser

    3. Browse to ThePirateBay

    4. Type the name of the music into there

    5. Download the torrent from ThePirateBay

    into:

    1. Browse Amazon for some music

    2. Download the torrent from ThePirateBay

    I believe this would commonly be called a mashup - the mp3s that are downloaded in the final steps of both of these are not necessarily sourced from Amazon (most mp3s that are available for illegal download still come from pre-release/sampler CDs and are available well before Amazon or iTunes make them available).

    It gets pretty tiring seeing every single article about mp3s/DRM turn into a slagging off match between tosspots that really don't have a clear grasp of the facts in the article...

  60. Anthony
    Pirate

    @ Daniel ... really getting off topic here ...

    ... but it frustrates me no end when pedants continue with pedantry when they are clearly clueless of the context of their pedance (I think I may have just made that word up).

    You are saying "the OED is wrong" and "has nothing to do with it"!?!

    Theft may well be a "legally defined term" (whatever that means), but guess what, we're not in a court of law! If you hadn't noticed there isn't anyone here with a curly wig or a hat shaped like a tit! We are in the comments section of a third rate digital rag, where I think the dictionary takes precedence (though the use of a dictionary is fairly optional as well)!

    Arrgh me hearties, I'm off to pirate some software and thieve some music from those prissy modern rockstaaarrrgghhss!

  61. Mark
    Paris Hilton

    @Anthony

    And in the laws Piracy is COMMERCIAL LARGE SCALE copyright infringement.

    And legal terms REALLY DO mean something when you're talking about the FUCKING LAW.

  62. Mark
    Paris Hilton

    "did you deprive creator a sale"

    No.

    Deprived of what would have POTENTIALLY been a sale.

    But then again, I could potentially cop off with Angeline Jolie. It's POSSIBLE!

    "your a thief". No. Civil tort, not criminal theft.

  63. Mark
    IT Angle

    "small, independent music labels who can't sell either physical media, OR downloads."

    And I can't sell buggy whips or house cardigans (cardigans that fit over the house).

    should the government step in to make sure?

    Now what this label CAN do is help promotion of the people who pay them. They can produce the professional looking CD's and other merchandise for the bands that want to pay them to sort the details out.

    If they don't want to do that, why should the government help them out? They don't help ME.

  64. Mark
    Paris Hilton

    re: Copyright, DRM et al ....

    You forgot "Do we get life + 70 years rights on the code" and "Do we expect to be paid for work we HAD done, not work we ARE DOING".

    And 90% of programmers do not work for Microsoft (Software division), Symantec, Eidos, etc. So without copyright, your boss still needs you to secure the computer perimeter. Still needs you to write a script that will display the monthly data for the board by next Thursday, etc.

    And we do not get copyright on our stuff, so we lose nothing. The company sells no software so lose nothing.

  65. Mark
    Paris Hilton

    @Sean Baggaley

    "I love the architectural ouvré of Nash and his contemporaries -- you'll see examples all over London. It has wonderful aesthetics. Does this mean I should be allowed to live in any of their houses for free?"

    No, but you CAN build a house that looks EXACTLY THE SAME. Maybe from cheaper materials and in a less desirable area.

    That's what an MP3 copy IS.

    And as Dan said: what about the estate of Hans Christian Anderson or Charles Dickens (hell, Mozart/Handel/Lizt and Shakespear himself to cover most of Art), we don't take over dead people's houses unless we BUY and then own them and they become OUR house.

    Now show me the receipt that says you bought any rights to any of their works.

    Show me ANYONE who has bought the rights to the works from the descendant of one of those people and so they now own it.

    They don't?

    Then either

    a) Copyright ("Art" as you put it) isn't property

    b) You're all trespassers and should be jailed

  66. Mark
    Paris Hilton

    re: Let's take a look...

    And even worse, the used version of the CD NONE of the money goes to the artist!

    OMG!!!!!

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