Well, John over at Commons Music Blog has followed up the discussion about Playlouder MSP (see posts below, here and here.) by interviewing one of the co-founders of Playlouder MSP. Read the interview here and some followup questions . I have to take a small piece of credit myself, because he relayed some of my own thoughts from my earlier post in his questions. As you can see from the comments on the Commons Music Blog and other places, the Internet community is still a little split on this issue – some embrace it as the second coming of the Lord, while others fear it like the plague. I am still somewhere in the middle, slightly leaning towards positive because I think it’s a somewhat clever idea, not like past moves made by the recording industry.
By the way, by submitting the interview to BoingBoing (it got posted there a few days ago) I got some heavy traffic the first few days of September (and all I had was a “thanks” link on the site, the actual interview was posted on Commons Music – I wonder how much traffic he got) – so much actually, that after three days I have have as many hits on this page as I had the whole August (although the blog in this revision was only opened some time mid-August, it’s still quite impressive).
Well I first heard about Google Talk here and then I did some searching and found this which pretty much sums up my first impression too!
Do we really need another instant-messaging client? Yep, according to Google we do. This is the big hush-hush secret the Internet has been buzzing about for the last few weeks. Big friggin non-event if you ask me.
I’m not going to criticize the actual client yet, as I haven’t tried it, but WHY, for God’s sake WHY? I only use MSN, and barely for that matter. The idea of having four or five different IM clients just to satisfy your friends’ needs is just inconceivable to me.
Lockergnome (see above link) drums home his point well with the following:
Remember how you couldn’t send emails to your friends who used Eudora, because you were using Pine? That’s because it never happened. That shortcoming would never fly, yet we put up with these exact bugaboos on a regular basis.
Well I have been reading the Boing Boing article (see below), the original Guardian article and also the Fact Sheet and FAQ over at Playlouder, and there are some things I don’t understand:
1. It says that the users will be able to share files freely between each others; however it also says that all files will be supplied by Playlouder (who digitizes and fingerprints the files so they can’t leak outside the ISP’s network). Nowhere does it say that the users themselves are allowed to rip their own CDs and share. Further, since the songs ripped by the users themselves are not fingerprinted, these can leak out. So in relation to this, where did Boing Boing get this from :
PlayLouder MSP’s customers’ license includes Sony music sourced from P2P networks, ripped from CDs, or digitized from vinyl, cassettes, or radio broadcasts.
2. This statement in the Playlouder FAQ worries me:
We aim to prevent close to 100% of P2P traffic from going outside the MSP “walled garden”.
This is a very vague statement to me – do they mean their fingerprinted files only, or EVERYTHING?
So apart from these two things I think it’s a good idea. But I’d really like to see some clarification on them, because right now it’s somewhat of a blurry concept.
Boing Boing and a whole lot of other news outlets and blogs are writing about the “stupendously” good news which is the announcement of the Playlouder MSP service, which in short is a UK ISP which has entered into a unique deal with Sony/BMG so that all subscribers to their broadband service will be able to legally share music by Sony/BMG artists.
Most people who comment this news seems to think that it’s God’s gift to filesharers or something, and to a certain degree I must agree. As Nicklas Lundblad comments:
Det här är dock det första listiga draget från rättighetsindustrin på länge. Sedan om det är bra eller ej…ja, vad tycker vi egentligen? Jag tänker fortfarande.
Translated to English:
This is, however, the first clever move by the intellectual property rights’ industry in a long time. As for it being a good move or not, well, what do we really think? I’m still contemplating.
What Lundblad points out as a possible negative implication of this idea, is the risk of walling up Internet into many separate, exclusive networks. Because if Playlouder can be forced by Sony/BMG to filter and block sharing of their artists’ work to non-Playlouder customers, then what is to say that such blocking can’t be expanded to include various other files. Further, if another music publisher decides to join the game and signs up, a different ISP and then in returns blocks access to e.g. Playlouder we have gotten ourselves into a virtual hostile situation where one publisher is fighting another one by using an ISP as a proxy. Is this desirable? Lundblad calls this, the omnious, possible future of such an Internet, a “walled garden.”
More negative comments to this comes from one of Sweden’s most famous anti-copyright-activists, Rasmus Fleischer who thinks the whole thing is a non-event and is just another overhyped Internet-fad. The filters installed by Sony/BMG will of course never be able to block “un-authorized” sharing, i.e. non-Sony artists. Furthermore, it’s unreasonable to think that the blocking software that will prevent “authorized” sharing to external networks is not going to be circumvented easily.
So are these negative comments and fears viable? Or are we Swedes just a cranky old bunch of copyright-fighters? I guess we like our personal freedoms and privacy less diluted with corporate control than for example the Americans.
Just doing a bit of community service; educating the general population of the ways of movie piracy. (Only speaking of things I’ve heard about of course, nothing that I’m personally involved in!)
Steal This Post (it’s my comment there, if you didn’t get that.)
By the way, if you are interested in learning a little bit more of, umm…, the ‘liberation’ of digital arts, then I suggest you go over and take a look at www.slyck.com which is a good starting place for anyone interested in the subject. It’s nowhere near a holy bible of piracy (of course, there is no such thing as a holy bible of piracy) but it’s got some generally good information. There are darker and more sinister places out there but I’m NOT going to link to them, so don’t even ask.