MyTunes Turns iTunes into File Trade Service

by Richard Menta, 11/13/03

One of the neat features of iTunes is that while you can't download files from random users openly on the Net, you can stream songs from other iTunes users on the same network as yourself. Think of it as a form of Internet radio, where you select the songs and from a playlist larger than your own. This works pretty well for the college set who are on large networks and serve as a microcosm of tastes regularly sampling new music and varied styles.

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iTunes does not allow its users to save any of this music on their hard drives, so there are no file swap issues. Bill Zeller has come up with a program to change that. Called, MyTunes Zeller's program allows users to save others tunes on their hard drive. More important, it allows them to trade in MP3 files, a format not supported by iTunes.

On his website Zeller said "MyTunes lifts this [file save] restriction by allowing you to save music from other computers to your hard drive."

It must be noted that MyTunes does not work with songs purchased in iTunes AAC format. This is because those files are encrypted. But it can save any MP3 files available on the network. Like iTunes, MyTunes is restricted to the network it lies within, it does not reach users on the open Internet.

No doubt MyTunes is going to cause concern not only from Apple, but from the RIAA whose number one goal these past several years is to stop the sharing of music. Zeller is reporting on his website that in three days the program was downloaded over one million times.

Neither Apple nor the RIAA have commented on MyTunes yet.

Other MP3 stories:
Online singles are booming
CDs and the Scarcity Principle

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