The New York Times is carrying a story today about a very major music move toward a global commons:
Amazon, the Internet’s most successful seller of physical CDs, today announced plans to introduce a music download store later this year, selling songs and albums in the MP3 format without the anti-copying protection used by most online music retailers.
Selling songs as MP3 files means that customers can transfer their music without limits to any computer, cellphone or music playing device, including Apple’s iPod and Microsoft’s Zune.
The music will be from a major label, EMI, and 12,000 smaller independent music companies that have chosen not to use the copy-restricting software known as digital rights management, or D.R.M.’We are offering a great selection of music that our customers love in a way they clearly desire, which is D.R.M.-free, so they can play it on any device they own today or in the future,’ said Bill Carr, Amazon’s vice president for digital media.
David Card, an analyst at JupiterResearch, said Amazon’s store would immediately position Amazon as a serious rival to Apple and its popular iTunes service.