“After weeks of criticism, Sony has finally agreed to temporarily stand down on an abusive and likely illegal copy restriction practice. Hold the applause,” Dan Goodin writes for Wired News. “On Friday, the world’s second-biggest record label pledged to temporarily stop making CDs that leave computers vulnerable to security breaches. This is a step in the right direction, but it does not go nearly far enough toward correcting a serious ethical lapse. In fact, it is proof positive that Sony is unworthy of our trust or our business.”
Goodin writes, “A lot has been written about this issue already. But a lot more needs to be said to ensure Sony gets the message: This kind of behavior can never be tolerated. It may be unrealistic to think many will heed this call, but someone’s got to say it: Boycott Sony. Boycott them until they come clean and recall all the infected CDs. Boycott them until they distribute a removal program. Boycott them until they promise never do anything like this again.”
Goodin writes, “Even Microsoft, which is trying to court content providers with so-called digital rights management software that limits the way audio and video can be used on computers, took a stand against the unrepentant label. On Saturday, it agreed with the chorus of critics that Sony’s rootkit poses security risks and that the software company will update its antispyware and malicious software removal tools to uninstall it.”
Goodin writes, “I’m generally not a fan of services such as Apple Computer’s iTunes store. For one thing, songs from those sites are encoded at lower bitrates that can lead to poor sound quality in some cases. And for another, the music has too many restrictions on copying. But for the time being, I recommend these online services if you plan on buying any of the 20 titles EFF says contain the rootkit in their CD form.” [Note: Not a complete list, see link for info on how to identify tainted Sony products.]
Full article here.
“EFF has confirmed the presence of XCP on the following titles (each has a data session, easily read on a Macintosh, that includes a file called “VERSION.DAT” that announces what version of XCP it is using). If you have one of these CDs, and you have a Windows PC (Macs are totally immune, as usual), you may have caught the XCP bug,” Fred von Lohmann explains over on the EFF site and then lists the titles. “This is not a complete list. So how do you recognize other XCP-laden CDs in the wild?”
von Lohmann explains in the full article here.
Advertisements: Apple iPod nano. 1,000 songs. Impossibly small. From $199. Free shipping.
The New iPod with Video. The ultimate music + video experience on the go. From $299. Free shipping.
We agree with Goodin on the boycott issue and our boycott of all Sony products continues. We also agree slightly with Goodin about the Apple iTunes Music Store’s bitrate (it’s not nearly as bad as Goodin paints, in fact it’s pretty good, but we’d still like to see Apple offer higher bitrates, even if just as a higher-priced option). As for the iTunes Music Stores’ copying “restrictions,” if you can call them that; we disagree with Goodin. The iTunes Music Store’s DRM is among the most liberal in the business and the vast majority of customers will never encounter any limits or even know that they exist.
Boycott Sony products: Sony music CDs can install kernel extensions on Mac OS X – November 10, 2005