Sony/BMG is pwn3d!

Posted: November 16, 2005 in Uncategorized
Copyright protection requires theft! Oh, yes. Lemme explain…the rootkit spyware that several Sony albums forcibly installed on peoples’ computers…designed to prevent unauthorized trade of their albums, but which very soon allowed viruses and trojans to mask themselves on your hard drive and ended in what is believed to be the music industry’s first recall (hey, it ain’t a car!)…is partially comprised of stolen intellectual property of one of the very enemy the entire music industry is fighting: the LAME encoder.
 
History: ripping an album is only the first task to "trade" music on the Internet. Ripping is the process of taking the music from the CD and putting it on the hard drive. One of the best rippers available is Exact Audio Copy. But EAC (like other rippers), in and of itself, does not compress and encode the ripped album into files small enough to "trade" in MP3 format. For encoding those songs into MP3 format you need an encoder like LAME, which is widely considered to be the very best free encoder, and even vastly superior to many "pay-fer" encoders. Yes, superior to even the iTunes encoder. LAME was used for oh-so-many MP3s you downloaded back when the Internet was the Wild-Wild-West…and even today (assuming you still download…shame!)
 
But LAME is under a GNU license: it’s free to all, which means you cannot use it for financial gain, or redistribute without proper credit.
 
Sony violated that GNU. In every way. They literally stole it.
 
Oh, the irony. A big-name "we gotta protect our intellectual property" music company literally steals someone else’s intellectual property to protect their own property! It’s like me using a raw steak to lure my neighbor’s pitbull into my yard and letting him protect my property from the very neighbor who owns the dog. Except a pitbull ain’t gonna let somebody else drop a trojan on my hard drive…
 
This ain’t over, folks. The music industry will continue on their quest to ignore the inevitable…which has already happened. They will continue to ignore their own spreadsheets from 2000. They will continue to reject taking advantage of an incredible opportunity. They will continue to believe they are in control. But in the meantime, while we’re all waiting for more Sony entertainment, do you all remember what happened to Microsoft when a few lines of Stacker was found in MS-DOS 6.0?
 
The fall-out from this blind robbery combined with semi-intentional consumer harm should be very entertaining to watch. Stay tuned.
 
[written while listening to ripped…but not encoded…StainD’s Break The Cycle album]
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