Somebody just told me that clients of several Dutch online music stores (Planet Internet, Tiscali, MSN, Wanadoo and MTV as well) got a letter roughly saying the following (translated from Dutch):
Dear Mr. X,
An increasing amount of people choose to legally download music from the internet. Record companies allow more and more music to be licensed this way. This is why you, using Music Stream, have access to over 1 million songs right now.
To suit your needs as a customer as well as possible, Planet Internet has tried to offer you the music in different ways. Sadly, record companies have decided to no longer permit some of those ways of licensing.
What does this mean?
Record companies no longer support your type of license. This means that the music you already downloaded through this option possibly will no longer play. We succeed in allowing you to play the music until January 1st 2007.
We understand that it is inconvenient for you when you can no longer play downloaded songs. That’s why we give you 1000 credits (worth: 10 euro) that you can spend in April of this year.
(Source: ADSL Forum (Dutch))
I’m not sure how the licensing structure has changed, but it is scary. You think you bought a song, but if a record companies changes its mind they can stop you from playing it. It’s like the record company knocking on your door demanding all your CDs back because they don’t want you to have them after all, even though you already paid for them…
Update: The license withdrawn are licenses that allow the user to play the music on the computer only (so no burning on CDs or putting on an MP3 player).
It turns out that these Dutch providers of legal DRM protected music all use OD2. However, I can’t find anything about this on their site. Does anybody have any information on this? Has this happened in other countries as well?
This is not great promotion for DRM music. It seems safer to just download music illegally somewhere.