Is Apple Inadvertently Making Piracy Easier Than Ever?

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Is Apple Inadvertently Making Piracy Easier Than Ever? Listen to this article

Yammer 8

“Is Apple Inadvertently Making Piracy Easier than Ever?” That’s the question I posed to the rest of the GD Editors this morning. After all, I love my music, but Michael — well he is the music guy.

Here was the full hypothetical I shared:

Imagine there is a musical group whose songs you love. Now imagine they came out with an album, but it wasn’t released in the US. Problem is, none of the legal streaming music services seem to offer the album either. So what if, hypothetically speaking, you were to try the app MusicDownloader from the iTunes App Store. I mean, according the description it is completely legal right? Just look…

 

Yammer 9

 

It is totally legal right?

So, hypothetically, of course, you put in the name of the album you are looking for. If nothing relevant came up, as might be the case were this actually happening, you might try searching for each of the songs on the album. See the built-in search pane at the top of the program that you bring up by pressing the search icon at the bottom of the page? Wow, at least in this “example” all of them showed up as available. And, were one to pursue this further, it seems all could be downloaded to your iDevice and then, once connected to iTunes, those songs could be imported to one’s music collection. Hypothetically, anyway.

But the app only downloads music that has been placed on free sites and used by permission, right?

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Maybe, but at what point did the surviving Beatles and Yoko Ono not only allow their music to be part of the iTunes catalogue, but they were so generous as to make it FREE to download??

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It hypothetically only took all of three seconds for the program to find and then download the song “Hey Jude”, a song that I already own a non-hypothetically purchased copy of.

Is Apple Inadvertently Making Piracy Easier Than Ever?

And yep — AC/DC is on there, too. Not only the crappy cover band versions that Amazon and iTunes show when you do a search, but songs actually sung by AC/DC.

Is Apple Inadvertently Making Piracy Easier Than Ever?

Michael Anderson

When Dan mentioned this, my quick Google and AppStore search landed me with ‘Free Music Downloader’, an app that provides links to legit free music sites where content owners can post music for free and listeners can easily grab that music for their devices. It is a solid app and seems right-minded in approach. So I was wondering what Dan was on about.

Then he corrected me – it was simply MusicDownloader. When I searched that I came up with the same exact app as Dan, with the bad grammar, typos, and ‘limited time’ release notice.

And within seconds I was playing some live Miles Davis owned by Sony Music, some older Hamiet Bluiett, stuff from Pat Metheny and The Who and The Smiths and Lil’ Wayne and so on … I was able to search and download anything I wanted in a matter of seconds. While there was plenty of this music I did own, none of it was on my iPod … but in order to be sure I wasn’t getting stuff I already had in my iTunes account I chose other material by the aforementioned artists. It didn’t matter – I could pile up as much as I wanted.

I quickly realized why there was a ‘limited time release’ – very quickly Apple will realize what is going on here and pull the app.

There’s a name for this process, and it’s not convenience; it’s PIRACY. And it is brought to you for free by the iTunes App Store, if you can limit yourself to only 10 songs at a time. If you want unlimited downloaded songs, it’s $2.99.

Apple, the ball is in your court. What are you going to do about this?

Note: Any music that was hypothetically downloaded during the testing of this app was deleted, as was the app.

There’s a name for this process, and it’s not convenience; it’s PIRACY. And it is brought to you for free by the iTunes App Store, if you can limit yourself to only 10 songs at a time. If you want unlimited downloaded songs, it’s $2.99.

Apple, the ball is in your court. What are you going to do about this? 

Note: Any music that was hypothetically downloaded during the testing of this app was deleted, as was the app.

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About the Author

Dan Cohen
Having a father who was heavily involved in early laser and fiber-optical research, Dan grew up surrounded by technology and gadgets. Dan’s father brought home one of the very first video games when he was young and Dan remembers seeing a “pre-release” touchtone phone. (When he asked his father what the “#” and “*” buttons were his dad said, “Some day, far in the future, we’ll have some use for them.”) Technology seemed to be in Dan’s blood but at some point he took a different path and ended up in the clergy. His passion for technology and gadgets never left him. Dan is married to Raina Goldberg who is also an avid user of Apple products. They live in New Jersey with their golden doodle Nava.