Feeds

Carphone's music service to seek and destroy freetards?

We know where you've been

Remote control for virtualized desktops

Carphone Warehouse's music streaming and locker service has plenty going for it - not least the price. The £29 a year subscription offers much more than Spotify, but at a quarter of the price. But one small item in the terms and conditions has caused a fuss.

The service uploads the metadata from your music library to Music Anywhere's servers. Music Anywhere is the service provider for Carphone Warehouse. If a song is licensed and part of Music Anywhere's catalog of six million songs, you can then hear it streamed to another PC or a mobile device. You can listen to any of the songs on that device. If one of your songs isn't licensed, or is unrecognized, then it's still stored in the locker.

So far, so good. The alarming T&C is this one:

"In extreme cases where it becomes apparent that most of a person’s music collection has been fact pirated, Music Anywhere reserves the right to terminate the service."

So, er… how can they tell that your MP3s have been illegally obtained?

We asked, and didn't get a clarification - the technical process remains a mystery. So we'll continue to ask. But a spokesperson told us:

"Catch Media / Carphone Warehouse will abide by all privacy laws, and do not pass any private information to any entity including music labels or retailers."

Of course, to terminate your service, they don't have to. Many rippers who upload to Torrents, P2P services or unlicensed lockers such as Rapidshare can't help boasting about it: they leave an indication of the file's origins in the MP3's ID3 tags - "R1pp3d by Wa77ock", for example. Presumably, if you've been helping yourself to the large collections on the Torrents, then many of the files will bear this telltale mark. At what point Carphone or Music Anywhere decide that you're not merely a casual infringer, but have gone the whole nine tards, remains unclear.

With lockers becoming more popular, the paranoid may wish to clean out their ID3 tags using one of the tools listed here. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Managing SSL certificates with ease
The lack of operational efficiencies and compliance pitfalls associated with poor SSL certificate management, and how the right SSL certificate management tool can help.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.