At first, things went pretty good. Sure, the Napster interface is really slow (no matter if you use it through Windows Media Player or stand-alone) but I was still able to download a ton of new music. This brought life back to my stale music collection and I was really enjoying the freedom of listening to whatever I wanted. Then, after I had already downloaded 7 GB worth of music (over 300 albums) – disaster struck. I updated Napster to the latest release and somehow my license file that says I can use the downloaded music wasn’t working. And what was Napster’s solution – download all of the music again. All 300 hundred albums. I am not against digital rights management but it has got to work. So I’m done with Napster, and I’m done with music subscription services. Napster needs to seriously evaluate how their licensing works. Using license files is really lame – a better strategy has to be out there.
Digital rights management and music don’t mix. There are a million things that could go wrong on your computer and then your license file is gone – and so if your whole music collection. I’m not going to keep rebuilding my music collection every time Napster decides to upgrade their program or my computer crashes. Sure, you might pay a monthly fee to use your cell phone but you don’t lose anything if your phone dies. What if your TiVo spontaneously decided that you couldn’t watch any of your recorded TV shows? A person’s music collection is too personal and too emotionally connected to have these sort of issues – a rock solid DRM solution has to be in place in order for it to ever fully work.
Oh, and when I tried to unsubscribe from Napster, I had to call a 1 800 number. What’s your DRM horror story?
Filed in: Content Providers