Ding Dong: Another DRM Is Dead... And With It All The Files You Thought You Bought

from the how-it-works dept

Every few months, it seems, we hear of another online content store dying or changing... and with it, out goes all the content that people thought they were "legitimately" buying, because the connected DRM server goes dead. It makes you wonder why anyone buys any DRM'd content at all, knowing that in a flash, it might all go away. The latest is that the online music service Rhapsody is officially turning off the lights on its "RAX" DRM, such that anyone who has RAX files had better go through the painstaking process of "converting" all those files ASAP, or they're all gone:
Greetings! This is another reminder to convert RAX music files NOW to avoid losing any of your music. We want to make sure you can continue to enjoy all your music for as long as you please.

On November 7th, 2011 Rhapsody/RealNetworks will no longer support certain music files you purchased before July 2008. These songs will continue to play after November 7th unless you change to a new computer or substantially update your current computer. However, we strongly recommend you back up these RAX tracks to audio CD to ensure you can continue to enjoy your music.

Once you take this small step, you can continue to play these tracks on your audio CD or rip them to any format you desire and play them on your PC.

Please don't delay - after we shut off support for RAX files, you will not be able to play them if you move to a new computer or upgrade your operating system.
I like how Rhapsody pretends that backing up all these songs to CDs, then re-ripping them back to your computer, is just "a small step."

In the meantime, those who continue to insist that music is "licensed" and not "bought," can you explain what happened here? If the music was truly "licensed," why can't Rhapsody just provide non-DRM'd versions of the same music? Once again, all this really does is make you wonder why anyone "buys" any DRM'd product.


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    Hephaestus (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 9:03am

    Reinventing the glory days of past resale profits ...

    In the past ...
    New media formats came into existence.
    Cassette tapes failed.
    CD's got scratched.
    Each of these made you repurchase your music.

    Then digital happened ...
    No more new formats.
    No more failures.
    No more reselling you the same crap.

    I think DRM is the new way to get you to repurchase the same music again.

     

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      Jay (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 9:28am

      Re: Reinventing the glory days of past resale profits ...

      And people avoid it like the plague for the exact same reasons.

      I've barely heard anything about Blu-Ray or the Ultraviolet format that was good.

       

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      Frost (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:22am

      Re: Reinventing the glory days of past resale profits ...

      There's no thinking involved about it, I would say. There have been admissions made that DRM is all about controlling distribution, not about deterring piracy.

      They want people to pay again and again for the same material. This is blatantly obvious with things like movie formats - they release them over and over in various versions and then a new format is made and they do it all over again.

      Now of course it's moving to online streaming... where you'll be made to pay for every view eventually if it's not there yet, which is a wet dream come true for the content owners. And it's all going to have DRM to make sure you don't store a copy and rewatch it without paying. Unless, of course, we decide to get off the nasty merry-go-round and demand some real change.

       

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      Chronno S. Trigger (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:46am

      Re: Reinventing the glory days of past resale profits ...

      There are technically new formats. There is lossy formats like MP3 and lossless formats like FLAC. Then there are things like surround sound, 3D video, and holograms (if they ever work). It's not easy (if possible) to take the old tech with the lower quality or missing parts and convert it to the new tech. Garbage in, garbage out as they say.

       

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        el_segfaulto (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:58am

        Re: Re: Reinventing the glory days of past resale profits ...

        GIGO - An excellent description of the revolving door between politics and big business.

         

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      New Mexico Mark, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:52am

      Re: Reinventing the glory days of past resale profits ...

      We won't get fooled again!

      Now cough up $.99 if you want to listen to the song by the same name that you bought on LP, then 8-track, then cassette, then CD.

      Some days my irony meter goes to eleven.

       

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        Sean T Henry (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 11:14am

        Re: Re: Reinventing the glory days of past resale profits ...

        For $50 more I will sell you an irony meter that goes to twelve.

         

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          Greevar (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 1:37pm

          Re: Re: Re: Reinventing the glory days of past resale profits ...

          For $100,000 I will pay you to make an irony meter that I can replicate ad infinitum to sell while I pocket all the profit!

           

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      btr1701 (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 11:11am

      Re: Reinventing the glory days of past resale profits ...

      > I think DRM is the new way to get you to repurchase the same music again.


      I've noticed that there's a new scheme at play with movies, too. You can't just buy a movie on Blu-Ray or DVD anymore. Now you have to buy them in "Blu-Ray/DVD Combo Packs!"

      Basically, they put two copies of the movie into one box and charge you twice as much for them, even though they know that for any given customer, one of those copies is absolutely useless. If you have a Blu-Ray player, you're never going to use the DVD copy, and if you have a DVD player, you can't use the Blu-Ray copy. But if you want the movie (without pirating it, of course), you have to buy both at twice the price.

      Fantastic.

       

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        Greevar (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 1:38pm

        Re: Re: Reinventing the glory days of past resale profits ...

        Well, the customer has two copies now and they should have to pay the fair market value they would sell for individually, even though making copies is nearly without cost.

         

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:02am

    Some questions

    I like how Rhapsody pretends that backing up all these songs to CDs, then re-ripping them back to your computer is just "a small step."

    Q: Does Rhapsody provide a set of instructions on how to covert the music from their RAX DRM format?

    It does appear that Rhapsody is encouraging (inducing?) people to convert the music to "any format [they] desire and play them on [their] PC" and that this is not considered a violation of the TOS.

    Q2: Would this be the case prior to their decision to shut off the users ability to play "their" music?

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 12:22pm

      Re: Some questions

      I hate to burst your bubble but Rhapsody DID provide the instructions to convert from RAX to mp3. They provided them nearly 1 year ago.

      But I guess that doesn't fit your agenda.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 3:11pm

        Re: Re: Some questions

        Or you just answered the legitimate question that he asked. Too bad you couldn't do it without being an ass.

         

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    PaulT (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:02am

    Yet another lesson on why I will never buy a DRMed file. Glad to see what I complained about being proven correct (yet again), just a shame it's taken this long. Also a shame for those consumers caught out in this, but hey, this is what stunted and fragmented the digital market in the first place so there's hopefully not too many of them left.

    Now, any chance of removing DRM from movie files as well so that I can start buying those?

     

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  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:07am

    pirate mike u spin everything into a circle. You could have spun it like Rhapsodyby saying the backup process is no big deal because they are much much better writers than you since u suck as a writer, they make your writing skills look foolish. They laugh at your pathetic writing. u should not even write about this because its not even worth mentioning since its no big deal.

     

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      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:13am

      Re:

      If you've purchased music that goes dark, through no fault of your own, is it immoral to pirate that music you've already purchased?

       

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      weneedhelp (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:14am

      Re:

      "u suck as a writer"

      Does your high school know you use their computers for this?

       

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        JOhn Doe, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:37am

        Re: Re:

        They will if he is in Germany.

         

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        Loki, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 11:12am

        Re: Re:

        I think that is a grave insult to High School kids. I know several teenagers for whom English isn't even their second language (3rd for one, forth for another) that can write a hell of a lot better than that.

         

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      ChurchHatesTucker (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:15am

      Re:

      Note the link, people.

      Separately, hasn't anyone created a virtual CD burner yet? It seems like an obvious thing to do, but I've never come across one.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:25am

        Re: Re:

        noteburner

         

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        Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:44am

        Re: Re:

        "Separately, hasn't anyone created a virtual CD burner yet? It seems like an obvious thing to do, but I've never come across one."

        Yes, but it's generally in the file menu under something along the lines of "save as .iso"

         

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        el_segfaulto (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 11:02am

        Re: Re:

        Typically you can create a gigantic ISO with the audio tracks, mount it, and rip it with your favorite software. No CD-r needed, thus you wouldn't be encumbered by the 700 MB limit. However, I wouldn't expect non-techies to be able to do this without some major help.

         

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          Jeff Rife, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 12:23pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          There is an absolute limit of 99 tracks on a Red Book audio CD, so you'd have to do the conversion in batches of less than 100.

           

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        Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 11:44am

        Re: Re:

        I was trying to out troll the chamber of commerce. Apparent, based on the response, I've done a pretty good job. :)

         

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        Mike, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 12:22pm

        Re: Re:

        Can't you just burn it to an ISO image, then mount that ISO and rip it to mp3 or whatever? Seems like a virtual CD burner would be nice to have it do everything in one go, but it may be of limited use.

         

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        BeeAitch (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 7:57pm

        Re: Re:

        Does ISOMaster meet your requirements? ;)

         

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        JEDIDIAH, Nov 2nd, 2011 @ 8:04am

        Create the image. Don't burn it. Mount it.

        With the way Linux handles optical media, this would be pretty straightforward. The basic command line tools already break up the process into a number of discrete steps. You can simply interrupt the process in the middle and use your disk image directly rather than burning it to physical media.

        Dunno how it would work in other environments though.

        The process of creating all of those CD's (image file or physical disk) would still likely be an annoying and time consuming manual process though.

        DRM probably means no 3rd party automation.

         

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        Anonymous Coward, Nov 2nd, 2011 @ 11:48am

        Re: Re:

        what do you mean?
        this sounds important
        please clarify

         

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      Squirrel Brains (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:18am

      Re:

      First of all, if you are going to criticize Mike for poor writing skills, you should probably write well.

      Second of all, it is a bigger deal than you let on. It is a cautionary tale of not relying on sources that sell you a product requiring constant DRM. You might find the process trivial, but the fact that you even have to go through those steps is a joke.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:25am

      Re:

      Nothing like a very badly written critique of an article to make a point.

      Not sure what the point would be, but nonetheless...

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:29am

      Response to: Anonymous Coward on Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:07am

      Rofl. Why are people so fucking willfully blind? If I had 500 songs purchased in this format, I'd be quite pissed off. Let's do the math. If a CD holds on average, 20 songs, I'd have to burn 250 CDs. At 5 minutes per CD, it would take 1250 minutes of just burn time to get my songs off that shitty format. Then at another 5 minutes to re-rip each CD into MP3s, add another 1250 minutes. So now I have invested almost 42 hours of my life to undo the DRM scourge. That's not even considering the time to swap 250 CDs or select the songs to burn to each CD or the time wasted when several of those CDs are coastered. And most people can tell you, my 5 mins burn and rip time estimates are considerably low. Not to mention I would have to pay for the blank CDs. Does that sound like a "small step" to you?? Wake the hell up asshole.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:34am

        Re: Response to: Anonymous Coward on Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:07am

        God damn it, before you criticize my math skills, that was supposed to be 5000* songs, not 500.

         

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      Jim O (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:40am

      Re:

      techdirt has added that "report" button for a reason. Don't let trolls hijack threads. Just click "report".

       

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      techflaws.org (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:55am

      Re:

      They laugh at your pathetic writing.

      Sayz u? Must b tru then!

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 2:11pm

      Re:

      I'm impressed at how many people took me for a real troll. I must be doing something right. One day, my trolling skills will sound just as retarded as the true trolls.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:16am

    It is not immoral or unethical, but it might be illegal.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:18am

    In the meantime, those who continue to insist that music is "licensed" and not "bought," can you explain what happened here? If the music was truly "licensed," why can't Rhapsody just provide non-DRM'd versions of the same music?

    Yeah, APPLE.

    I stopped buying from iTunes years ago (and any Apple products since my ancient iPod) because of this...are they still charging to get un-DRM'd tracks you already bought?

     

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      Chad, Nov 2nd, 2011 @ 1:27am

      Re: iTunes DRM

      iTunes made it possible to re-download non-DRM'd versions of any songs you had purchased prior to them removing the DRM. And now, with the advent of iCloud you can re-download anything purchased from the iTunes store as many times as you like.

       

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    out_of_the_blue, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:19am

    You guys say all DRM is easily cracked. Now it's an absolute lock?

    Make up your mind. Your arguments are Protean, change as needed to fit the moment.

    I too wonder why anyone would buy DRM files rather than a "real" CD, but that's a separate argument.

    This sounds like giving decent warning, for a corporaton. Usually they just take your money and fly by night, or if grow large and gain monopoly power, stay put and taunt you all day.

     

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      Chronno S. Trigger (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:22am

      Re: You guys say all DRM is easily cracked. Now it's an absolute lock?

      "You guys say all DRM is easily cracked. Now it's an absolute lock?

      Who said absolute lock? It's just an annoying step in the process, a step that should not have to exist.

       

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      Squirrel Brains (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:28am

      Re: You guys say all DRM is easily cracked. Now it's an absolute lock?

      This story is not about the crackability of DRM. As the story shows, breaking the DRM in this case is quite easy. Companies like Rhapsody need to make up their mind. They DRM files and then encourage all their users to break the DRM (which most smart people would have already done). It would have been better had they not placed the DRM on the file at all, since the DRM was easily broken, only those who were willing to play by the rules were hurt.

      Why do I buy digital music instead of CDs? So I don't have to pay for all the crap tracks that I don't like. I can buy (for cheaper) song ala carte. It was "nice" of Rhapsody to warn their customers. Basically, they are saying, "unless you move it quick, we're going to crap in your cereal bowl."

       

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        Loki, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 11:25am

        Re: Re: You guys say all DRM is easily cracked. Now it's an absolute lock?

        Plus there is the fact that even if RealNetworks says it is OK, and even provides details on how to break the DRM, does the law actually allow you to do so? If doing so were to still to violate, say the DMCA, then it doesn't really matter what Rhapsody says is OK now does it?

         

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:38am

      Re: You guys say all DRM is easily cracked. Now it's an absolute lock?

      I understand you don't like corporations. But a flaw in your reasoning appears to be that you think corporations are evil while people are not. The problems you see in corps aren't unique to corps, those problems are common in humans. Any time you give a person power, whether that person is acting behind a corporate veil or not, there is a high likelihood of abuse of that power. The easiest way to eliminate the abuse is to eliminate the power or provide a check against that power.

      As you say, monopolies are horrendous, competition works to check and reduce the power someone might have. So why is it you seem to agree with copyrights and patents? Those are nothing but government enforced monopolies. No amount of anti-trust action will stop them because the government was the one that gave the monopoly power in the first place.

      As to the rest of your comment. No one is claiming that DRM is an absolute lock. Indeed, Rhapsody is explaining just how you can "crack" their DRM. But that involves work that would not be necessary if they simply gave out DRM free files to begin with. They put in extra time, effort and money to build DRM into it and run the servers, and are now asking their customers to put time, effort and money so that they can continue to listen to what they already paid for. It's a lot of waste.

       

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      el_segfaulto (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 11:06am

      Re: You guys say all DRM is easily cracked. Now it's an absolute lock?

      The issue I have is the recommended fix. It isn't decrypting the files or releasing the private key used to encrypt them in the first place. It's, burning them to CD, and re-ripping to a DRM-free format. Anybody who has more than a hundred songs should rightfully be incensed. The easy fix is to generate a giant ISO file, mount it, rip it, and use a lookup program to regenerate the tags. Realistically most people aren't going to realize that this is an option, let alone have the technical skills to be able to do it.

      This is a case where downloading those albums from a torrent would be absolutely justified.

       

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        hothmonster, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 2:04pm

        Re: Re: You guys say all DRM is easily cracked. Now it's an absolute lock?

        "This is a case where downloading those albums from a torrent would be absolutely justified."

        And the RIAA wins because thats "billions" more dollars going to pirates they can complain about.

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Nov 2nd, 2011 @ 3:43am

          Re: Re: Re: You guys say all DRM is easily cracked. Now it's an absolute lock?

          And the RIAA wins because thats "billions" more dollars going to pirates they can complain about.

          As if they won't do that regardless of reality?

           

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      PaulT (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 11:57am

      Re: You guys say all DRM is easily cracked. Now it's an absolute lock?

      Whoooshh!

      Another day, another logical argument goes straight over OOTB's head.

      Don't worry dear, one day you'll get it. At least you're trying, unlike some people here.

       

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    ethorad (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:19am

    end of licence?

    Surely if the music was indeed licenced, all they have to do is say that the licence terms are coming to an end, so you will no longer have permission to listen to the music. Tough luck if you want to.

    Also, since breaking DRM is against the law aren't they promoting illegal activity? Burning to CD and reripping sounds very much like you're circumventing a technological measure to me.

     

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      btr1701 (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 11:21am

      Re: end of licence?

      > Also, since breaking DRM is against the law
      > aren't they promoting illegal activity?

      Since they're the 'owner' of the DRM, they're allowed to give permission to others to circumvent their own security if they want to.

      Otherwise it would be like saying that once a homeowner puts a lock on their front door, they can never give anyone else a key (or permission to break a window to get in, if need be).

       

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        BeeAitch (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 8:18pm

        Re: Re: end of licence?

        Point well made.

        The problem I see is that when the 'average joe' sees that DRM is easily circumvented (as per Rhapsody's instructions), why wouldn't (s)he assume that, if it is legal to circumvent Rhapsody's DRM, that it is then 'legal' to circumvent all DRM?

        After all, if it's OK with this company, why would it not be OK with other companies?

        Flawed logic: yes, but....

         

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        Griff, Nov 2nd, 2011 @ 2:17am

        Re: Re: end of licence?

        They may be the owner of the DRM but they probably originally signed something with the label saying they would not distrib any DRM free music.

        Surely the "right" thing to do would be to tell each user that their obsolete files were now available in a personal area as MP3 files instead.

         

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:20am

    This is exactly why DRM is a deal-breaker for me. (* I will /rarely/ make exceptions for works I consider important enough to buy for other reasons.)

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:39am

    I don't know. It seems they are giving people a way to convert their files to almost any format without issue. Seems to be a no-brainer and no loss for anyone.

     

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      Jim O (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:43am

      Re:

      Have you ever taken the time to convert from one file format to another? It can be quite difficult and time consuming, especially if you care about little details like ID3s and the like.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:52am

      Re:

      I don't know. It seems they are giving people a way to convert their files to almost any format without issue. Seems to be a no-brainer and no loss for anyone.

      We're recalling all jars and bottles - they will no longer be supported. Please go to your kitchen and transfer every last condiment, beverage and anything else you have into some other type of container. It's a no-brainer and no loss for anyone. You have two weeks.

       

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      AJ (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:53am

      Re:

      "It seems they are giving people a way "

      How about they provide me with them already converted?

       

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      techflaws.org (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:57am

      Re:

      Seems to be a no-brainer and no loss for anyone

      Apart from the time lost for conversion and the quality loss by yet another encoding step you mean?

       

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        BeeAitch (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 8:26pm

        Re: Re:

        Honest question: does conversion from their format to any other introduce loss?

        If so, then their DRM is that much more insidious.

        If not, it is just(and I use the term loosely), an inconvenience.

         

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          techflaws.org (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 11:28pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Of course. They ask you to go from lossy RAX to CD (apparently they've never heard of images before) and then to a format of your choice which most likely is lossy as well. It makes no sense to go from lossy to FLAC, only from lossless to FLAC.

           

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      Chuck Norris' Enemy (deceased) (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 11:33am

      Re:

      I assume by "they" you mean Rhapsody who are not giving their legitimate, paying customers anything but DRM-laden songs approaching obsolescence. All the work, burden, and loss is on customers.

       

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      JEDIDIAH, Nov 2nd, 2011 @ 8:09am

      Just give the users their own keys.

      Why should anything need to be converted.

      They should simply distribute something that decrypts these files and gets rid of the DRM. The DRM should be what "expires" rather than the content.

       

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    paperbag (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:48am

    yeah...

    lossy -> lossy compression = fail.

     

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    hothmonster, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:52am

    Mike am I going crazy? I thought there was a story yesterday, something along the lines of, Klobuchar is all for Net Neutrality a few months ago but now is in favor of felony streaming. It seems to be missing from the homepage, did something happen? I swear it had a video of her talking about how important net neutrality was and the story was posted sometime yesterday afternoon, CST.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:52am

    Simple answer, when it comes to things like music it's only theft when you steal music from groups like the RIAA. When the RIAA steals music from you that you already paid for it's a legitimate business practice, because hey, every few years you need to buy a new computer to replace the old one, so what's wrong with the RIAA making you do the same thing with music?

     

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      BeeAitch (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 8:37pm

      Re:

      "...what's wrong with the RIAA making you do the same thing with music?"

      Nothing, nothing at all, since you have been conditioned to repurchasing your music every few years, when the latest and greatest format is announced (LP>8-track>cassette>CD>MP3>????).

      Their problem is that digital=????.

      They're at a dead end, and are panicking.

       

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  •  
    identicon
    flyfish, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:56am

    re: "I like how Rhapsody pretends that backing up all these songs to CDs, then re-ripping them back to your computer, is just "a small step."

    If that is NOT a small step you should back away from the computer and do something else with your life because technology is too complicated for you.

    On the other hand I would agree that the need to do this is an annoyance, the size of which depends on how much you need to convert.

    Fish who got burned when musicmatch went away and who used just this process to recover.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 11:05am

      Re:

      I think the point is that this is a completely unnecessary waste of customers' time that could've been avoided had they not used this DRM system in the first place - or provided customers a replacement instead of making them do all the work.

      Any inconvenience you cause your paying customers is something that should be avoided like the plague. They'll stop trusting you and go elsewhere with their money.

       

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      The Groove Tiger (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 11:35am

      Re:

      Wait, you think that going to the store, buying 50 cds, going through 1000 songs, burning them on the 50 cds, then going thru all the cds again and ripping them to mp3 is a small step?

      In that case I've got a few errands for you to run.

       

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      JEDIDIAH, Nov 2nd, 2011 @ 8:13am

      Manual drudgery is unbecoming any computing platform.

      > If that is NOT a small step you should back away
      > from the computer and do something else with your
      > life because technology is too complicated for you.

      It's not a small step done 100 times.

      ANY stupid little thing you are forced to do 100 times is unacceptable drudgery and busy work.

      Automating stupid nonsense like this is exactly what computers are supposed to do.

      This is why I tend to avoid the platforms that a lot of other people like to use. They mistake a pretty graphic that requires a lot of manual futzing for "user friendly".

      When you are doing something 22 or 100+ at a time, a crude non-automated process just doesn't cut it really.

       

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    Overcast (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 11:31am

    Since they're the 'owner' of the DRM, they're allowed to give permission to others to circumvent their own security if they want to.

    Doesn't appear to be true..


    Section 103 (17 U.S.C Sec. 1201(a)(1)) of the DMCA states:

    No person shall circumvent a technological measure that effectively controls access to a work protected under this title.


    ....

    (A) to 「circumvent a technological measure」 means to descramble a scrambled work, to decrypt an encrypted work, or otherwise to avoid, bypass, remove, deactivate, or impair a technological measure, without the authority of the copyright owner; and

    (B) a technological measure 「effectively controls access to a work」 if the measure, in the ordinary course of its operation, requires the application of information, or a process or a treatment, with the authority of the copyright owner, to gain access to the work.




    This company doesn't actually own the copyright - true? It does specifically state, "without the authority of the copyright owner".

    The recording companies would hold those - that being the case, they do not have the authority to allow circumvention of DRM. At least from the way I read that law.

     

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    Overcast (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 11:32am

    Oh and...

    Otherwise it would be like saying that once a homeowner puts a lock on their front door, they can never give anyone else a key (or permission to break a window to get in, if need be).

    If in fact *only* the copyright owner was allowed to make a copy of the key - well, you as the homeowner wouldn't actually own the copyright - the company who made the lock would...

     

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 11:36am

    DRM is to digital content as Payday Cash Advance "businesses" are to monetary loans.

     

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 11:41am

    Why dont people just stop consuming music. Send them a message - we don't want the content the way you are delivering it - change your ways or you will lose your customers for good. Boycott the industry altogether and don't illegally download anything either.

    The problem with illegally downloading songs is that it proves there is a demand for the content and just provides more fuel for their arguments in favor of stronger copywrite enforcement.

    If you want change to happen organize a world-wide boycott and hit them where it hurts - in their wallet. It would have to be well publicized so they know why their music isn't selling.

     

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      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 5:29pm

      Re:

      >The problem with illegally downloading songs is that it proves there is a demand for the content and just provides more fuel for their arguments in favor of stronger copywrite enforcement.
      If you want change to happen organize a world-wide boycott and hit them where it hurts - in their wallet. It would have to be well publicized so they know why their music isn't selling.

      Here's the thing - the industry is quick to blame any drop on their sales to piracy. As it stands we're reeling from double recessions, somehow the industry is making more money than ever, and yet they will continue to blame consumers for "lost sales". If we're going to to get laws that routinely punish innocent people, and we're all going to get penalised, don't be surprised if some people feel that they have to deserve it first.

       

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      BeeAitch (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 8:42pm

      Re:

      Um, because that's the equivalent of shooting the messenger?

      I, for one, am not pissed off at all at artists.

      I am however, pissed of as hell at the middlemen who presume to represent them.

      If you can't see the difference, I would presume that are, in fact, one of the middlemen.

       

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    AG (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 11:43am

    Rhapsody is toast

    One thing is clear: Rhapsody should be charged with inciting infringement and taken to court. How dare they tell their customers to circumvent DRM?!!

     

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    identicon
    Digitari, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 12:00pm

    RE Not Buying

    "Boss CD sales are down again"

    "No problem, We'll just call our government friends we have on the payroll and change a law or two then make MORE money doing less"

    "no wonder you're the Boss"

    (Best part is, we make the Artist's pay for all the payola, Double plus good for us)

     

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 12:02pm

    I just don't get why they insist on DRM, I mean if it is this easy to beat dont you think the pirates would have figured it out? So, again, the paying customer is made to suffer and the pirates get the music anyway.

     

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      PrometheeFeu (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 3:30pm

      Re:

      It's called copyright holders. The big ones are absolutely crazy. And I don't mean that metaphorically. I mean they are literally victims of some sort of mental disorder. I heard second hand the story of negotiations being torpedoed by a presenter running bit torrent on his machine when he screen-shared with major copyright holders. (He was downloading OpenBSD) I've also head the story of an executive patiently explaining to a big copyright holder that their content was already all on pirate sites and that implementing DRM was expensive, that it would piss off users and it would not add any security. The response was that they would soon be rid of the pirate sites and that they wanted to keep everything secure for that day. I am not sure what the diagnosis is, but they have completely lost touch with reality.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 12:15pm

    DRM = Digital Rental Media

     

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    The Devil's Coachman (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 1:09pm

    Time to go all Sharia on their asses!

    Stealing my paid-for recordings? Off with their hands! Causing me to go through untold hours of torturous convoluted flaming hoop jumping? Beatings with iron bars! Sitting there smugly and telling me it's not a big deal? Let the stoning begin!

    Of course, I am not a Sharia lawyer, but if my interpretation is correct, then let the punishments fit the crimes. The scimitar is being honed at this moment.

    Of course, I am also not a lawyer of any type, which leaves me the freedom to continue hating them all.

     

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    CrushU, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 1:18pm

    Only One DRM'd Product...

    "Once again, all this really does is make you wonder why anyone "buys" any DRM'd product."

    I buy games on Steam, does that count?

    It's more convenient to have Steam organize my games for me and let me choose which I want installed, than to have to keep up with various DVDs/CDs and find them all whenever I want to play something.

    This, of course, is ADDED value, but if Steam were to go down in flames at some point, I would lose a substantial amount of my games. :(

     

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    shawnhcorey (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 1:23pm

    Just Say No

    There are plenty on DRM-free music and videos available on the internet to fit any tastes (and some are exceeding tasteless for those who like bland :)). I haven't listen to music from the record labels in years. There is plenty of other selection.

    DRM: just say no.

     

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    mike allen (profile), Nov 1st, 2011 @ 3:13pm

    not sure if it would work but worth trying, if you could convert all the RAX files to wav files the if you wanted to mp3 that would also get round the DRM. I don't have ant RAX files so have not tried.

     

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    identicon
    Crankph, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 4:00pm

    Re: by Anonymous Coward on Nov 1st, 2011 @ 10:52am
    I don't know. It seems they are giving people a way to convert their files to almost any format without issue. Seems to be a no-brainer and no loss for anyone.

    We're recalling all jars and bottles - they will no longer be supported. Please go to your kitchen and transfer every last condiment, beverage and anything else you have into some other type of container. It's a no-brainer and no loss for anyone. You have two weeks.

    Great analogy! I love it!

    Sorry for the repost.

     

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    identicon
    SL Clark, Nov 1st, 2011 @ 4:08pm

    Publishers still use this??

    In this day & age, after everything that's happened, I'm shocked publishers still believe in DRM.
    -SL Clark
    Publisher, Heart Press

     

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    Damien Sturdy (profile), Nov 2nd, 2011 @ 4:00am

    Are they really telling people to convert?

    Does RAX contain lossy compressed audio? if so asking them to back them up/re-rip will be a lossy procedure.

    I don't know much about Rhapsody so I may be talking out of my arse if they aren't using lossy compression, but have you heard a double-encoded MP3?

    *rips ears off*

    "Oh Hello, We notice you leased some music. Sorry, though, we've decided not to provide you with access anymore."

     

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    hmm (profile), Nov 2nd, 2011 @ 5:43am

    RN

    Real Networks is just prepping itself for bankruptcy.

    Paperwork is in place
    Seeking protection from Creditors: CHECK
    Bankruptcy filing documents: CHECK

    In a small way it's nice they warned people to convert files now before everything is turned off, since once real networks is in administration its too late.

     

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