Yahoo Sells Free DRM MP3

August 7, 2006


DRM-featuring MP3 are already a standard in the music business, but Yahoo! has decided to rock this “standard” boat. The Internet giant announced it would do everything it can to persuade major labels to exclude copy protection software from the files sold through online music stores.Ian Rogers, Yahoo! product manager, discusses this decision on the Yahoo! Music blog.“We’ve been publicly trying to convince record labels that they should be selling MP3s for a while now. Our position is simple: DRM doesn’t add any value for the artist, label (who are selling DRM-free music every day – the Compact Disc), or consumer, the only people it adds value to are the technology companies who are interested in locking consumers to a particular technology platform.”According to him, music files with no DRM included mean online stores have to less expenses. The DRM is costly to create and maintain, as it has to be constantly policed and updated.

“We’ve also been saying that DRM has a cost. It’s very expensive for companies like Yahoo! to implement. We’d much rather have our engineers building better personalization, recommendations, playlisting applications, community apps, etc, instead of complex provisioning systems which at the end of the day allow you to burn a CD and take the DRM back off, anyway! ”

Furthermore, users would also have a gain if such an initiative would come true. At present time, the DRM copy-protection doesn’t allow the user to freely copy the CDs that he own and he also can’t play the purchased content on different devices.

The first song to be release without DRM is Jessica Simpson‘s “A Public Affair”. The song is s in the open MP3 format and is compatible with all portable music players.

Should Yahoo! succeed with this project, giants like Apple’s iTunes will most certainly have to re-think their long term strategy, as the lack of restriction is sure to attract users to Yahoo!‘s service.


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