Friday, August 10, 2007

Universal Music Will Sell Songs Without Copy Protection

From The New York Times - Signaling another departure from the music industry’s longtime antipiracy strategy, the Universal Music Group will sell a significant portion of its catalog without the customary copy protection software for at least the next few months, the company announced yesterday.

Universal, the world’s biggest music conglomerate, said it would offer albums and songs without the software, known as digital rights management, through existing digital music retail services like RealNetworks and Wal-Mart, nascent services from and Google, and some artists’ Web sites.

But the music will not be offered D.R.M.-free through Apple’s iTunes, the leading music service. The use of copy protection software has become a major bone of contention in the digital music business, where iTunes accounts for the vast majority of download sales. The record labels generally have required that retailers place electronic locks to limit copying of music files. | Read full article

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