Aardvark DailyNew Zealand's longest-running online daily news and commentary publication, now in its 18th year. The opinion pieces presented here are not purported to be fact but reasonable effort is made to ensure accuracy.
Content copyright © 1995 - 2013 to Bruce Simpson (aka Aardvark), the logo was kindly created for Aardvark Daily by the folks at aardvark.co.uk
Please visit the sponsor!
Those of you who regularly browse the Aardvark Daily Sci/Tech news links will have noticed that a few days ago there was a story on the wires in which the Google was withdrawing YouTube API support for the YouTube-MP3.org website.
Why were they doing that?
Because that site allowed you to strip the audio from a YouTube video and have it converted to an MP3 file.
Given the number of chart-topping music-vids that appear on YouTube, this meant that it was easy-peasy to get your favourite tunes onto your media-player without having to pay for them.
Of course I had to laugh when I read that -- because like most of you reading this column, I already have the smarts and software that allow me to perform such acts of magic (if I so choose) without having to use some 3rd-party website.
Ankle-tapping YouTube-MP3.org isn't going to make a single bit of difference to those who are hell-bent on getting their music for free.
However, I see that the RIAA are now going after the purveyors of software that does the same job as that website.
According to this story on CNet, the RIAA has asked CNet to remove such software from its Download.com website.
Once again -- I'm chuckling.
Only a fool uses Download.com these days -- its downloads so filled with tag-along spyware and crap that it's a big "stay away" zone as far as I'm concerned. There are much better places to get your OSS and, freeware and shareware!
In fact, I think this is only "news" because it gives CNet a chance to plug its own download service in what appears to be a real "news" story.
What's more, if the RIAA is going to go after software "which can be used to steal content" then we'll have no browsers left -- after all, all browsers have a cache that effectively dumps a copy of your favourite YouTube video onto your hard drive.
I really wish that Google et al would simply call the RIAA/MPAA's bluff.
Tell them that their promotional music videos and trailers are no longer welcome on the site.
See how long it would take before these industry groups would come back with their caps in hand, begging to be allowed to use the video sharing site as the wonderful promotional tool it is.
I had thought that the RIAA had woken up to the fact that there's a fortune to be made by selling people good music at affordable prices via digital downloads. In fact, I think I read somewhere that digital downloads have recently exceeded CD sales for the first time ever.
And now they want to squeeze blood out of this stone?
I get the feeling that enough will never be enough for this group of greedy suits.
Unfortunately, I suspect that the next step for the RIAA/MPAA will be demands for a "nocache" media tag that will force all browsers and media-players to immediately delete any cached copy of tagged content as soon as it has finished playing.
How they'll achieve that with an open-source browser such as FireFox remains to be seen -- but bookmark this page -- because I guarantee you it'll be coming!
Please visit the sponsor!
Oh, and don't forget today's sci/tech news headlines
Remember, this is purely a gift, you'll get nothing other than a warm fuzzy feeling in return.