Virgin Does Music Deal With Universal; Everyone Involved Forgets The Past

from the let's-look-back-a-bit dept

There's lots of news coming out today about how UK broadband ISP Virgin has signed a deal with Universal Music to allow unlimited access to Universal Music's catalog (downloads and streams) for a set price. Various execs and politicians are talking it up like it's the greatest thing ever. It's as if they think that people can't remember back just a few months.

That's because it was just a few months ago that Virgin was set to launch a similar offering that included all of the major record labels, but then a few of them got greedy and said they'd only agree to it if Virgin also employed Deep Packet Inspection (DPI) techniques to track the file sharing and cracked down on any sharing of MP3s. Virgin resisted -- after all, just a few months before that, it had insisted that it would never cut subscribers off the internet for file sharing. So... wouldn't you know it... a part of this plan is to cut file sharers off the internet.

So, let's take a look at this "wonderful" and "amazing" new agreement. You get a vastly limited catalog (only Universal Music -- and who the hell knows what label their favorite bands are on these days?). It's not clear how the usage is tracked, but given the earlier reports, we have to wonder if it involves DPI spying on your usage... and Virgin is committed to cracking down on file sharing and even "temporarily" cutting off access to the internet (Virgin claims its okay, because the cutoff is only "temporary"). Perhaps there are some folks out there who will sign up for such a service, but it's difficult to see who. They aren't offering any benefits or additional value.
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Filed Under: downloads, music, services, uk
Companies: universal music, virgin

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  1. identicon
    D, 4 Jul 2009 @ 6:33am

    Re: Old Time Record Guy

    You have totally missed the point that orly is trying to make (which I agree with) which is:
    It takes a lot of time and effort to download all these songs/movies at the moment and more if you want to use them on different devices.

    If what he was asking for was available as a seamless service then I think people would start to think of "free" music in the same way that people now think of home car maintenance, which is "much cheaper" than taking your car to a garage. Wouldn't you rather the car just "got fixed" and you paid a bit more than spending ages doing the work yourself? I know that I would.

    This is also a similar argument to the "Linux is as free as your time" that MS and Apple give. MS and Apple are still going strong because people ARE willing to pay for convenience and simplicity of service (Linux may still get there).


    gotta' feed trolls too...

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