Collapse of Music DRM Continues; DRM Customers Still Screwed
from the we're-shocked dept
Support for DRM in the recording industry is in freefall. On Tuesday, Napster released a new version of its music store offering 6 million DRM-free tracks. Napster is a relative latecomer to this party, joining Apple, Amazon, and Wal-Mart, all of whom have had at least some DRM-free, major-label music available for about a year. One difference, though, is that Napster is coming out of the chute with support from all four major labels and thousands of smaller labels as well. At this point, any music store that doesn't offer DRM-free tracks is going to look like a real laggard. This story wasn't too surprising given the way things have been going over the last year. But even less surprising is the fact that customers who were foolish enough to purchase DRMed content from previous versions of Napster are stuck with their decision. They don't get to update their content to MP3 format, and while Napster has decided to continue running its "license servers" for now, it's only a matter of time before Napster decides running those servers is more trouble than it's worth and shuts them off, cutting customers off from their music libraries entirely.