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Universal Music Group going to free downloads with SpiralFrog

Ryan Block, @ryan
08.29.06
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Alright everybody, witness the latest trend to sweep the out of touch music industry: free ad-supported music downloads. And one company planning to offer such a gig, SpiralFrog, has found itself a pretty big taker in the Universal Music Group, whose catalogue of artists (some of which include Eminem, U2, Kanye, Bon Jovi, etc.) will be online and freely downloadable to those willing to sit through "non-intrusive, contextually-relevant, targeted advertising," according to SpiralFrog. It's a step in the right direction, but what do you think the odds are that Universal is still going to require DRM even on free downloads? Now, DRM-free costless downloads with ads, that's fine, but when is someone just going to offer what we really want: straight up DRM-free media downloads? We're willing to freaking pay for it, you know? And we're sure a lot of other people out there are willing to, as well.

[Via Reuters, thanks to everyone who sent this in]

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