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How Much Does It Really Cost to Download "Free" Music From the Internet?
Beware - The Dangers of Downloading
If you are older than 40 this may not shock you, but believe it or not, people of all ages are being sued by music companies for downloading and sharing music. One of my collegues told me about this because their teenager had this actually happen to them. It was an extremely expensive way to get music. Teenagers are bombarded daily with ads and opportunities to get new music on the internet; people of all ages that download music from the internet for that matter are at risk. Have you ever heard of the old saying....nothing is free? Well, in the instance of file sharing it is just that.....not free. There are companies out there such as Kazaa that you can join for $29.99 per month and begin "file sharing". This may sound like you are paying for the music. Not so. You are purchasing the use of their software. The producers and musicians are not being paid through these companies. These companies are providing a service to you but it deals with their software.
According to www.foxnews.com In New York, some music producers or companies that represent musicians are turning to the legal system to regain lost income. This may seem drastic but literally millions of dollars are being siphened off of the music companies via the internet. You do not have to be the one who downloaded the song and you do not have to have a recording of the song either. Just having it on your computer is enough. In the case of my colleague, her daughter had the lone computer in a dorm room at Texas A&M University. She was sent a notice of the lawsuit. Their daughter did not download the music and did not even listen to that genre. The music company was not interested in plea bargaining. There were thousands of students included in this lawsuit. My colleague had to hire an attorney and saw thousands of dollars go down the drain in defending their child. Case in point, September 9, 2003 a 12-year-old New York City girl who thought downloading songs was fun. She received a letter in the mail naming her along with hundreds of others in a lawsuit. The parent and girl thought that it was legal because they had paid their $29.99 to a company on the internet for this service. The outcome of this story can be read http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2003/08/28/tech/main570507.shtml
Here is the fine print that most people click through without reading:
Full track Downloads
In addition to any and all other usage prohibitions and restrictions contained in these TOU and the terms and conditions specified during the subscription registration process for the Subscription Service to which you subscribe, you agree that the following usage restrictions apply to full track downloads of Materials through the Subscription Services:
- Full track downloads are protected using digital rights management ("DRM") technology.
- Before being able to complete your music Subscription Service sign-up, you must register an Account with BDE.
- Before being able to download or play Materials, you must log into your Account from the PC on which you wish to play those Materials.
- You may log in from and play files on up to 3 different PCs.
- The Services support PCs only, not Mac or Linux.
- You acknowledge you have read and understand the minimum compatibility requirements for the Subscription Services, and that you must be running Windows XP or Vista, and have Windows Media Player 10 or a later version installed in order to access the Services and Software.
- You are strictly prohibited from burning any of the full track downloads to a CD or any other permanent storage media.
- When your Subscription Service expires or is cancelled, any downloaded Materials will no longer be playable or otherwise accessible by you.