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Digital music: free again?

Digital music: free again?

Is it the old Napster back from the grave? Not quite. But SpiralFrog, a New York-based music download service, does indeed plan to offer free digital music downloads by the end of the year. The company has inked a deal with Universal Music Group, whose talent list includes artists such as Eminem, Gwen Stefani, and U2. It is apropos to ask about the catch and indeed there is one. SpiralFrog's Web-based service will be advertisement driven, so users will need to subject themselves to "targeted" ads in order to get their mitts on available tracks. That's not so bad, I suppose. I heard a similar proposal more than a year ago that planned to use branded media players and song tracking to pay royalties to artists. This all may seem a tad invasive and in truth it is, but I think I could put up with it if it meant I didn't have to deal with inconvenient DRM-wrapped files for the rest of my digital music days. However, I suspect that the songs offered on SpiralFrog will still have DRM protection, though how much people will care about this when they get the music for free, one can never be too sure. SpiralFrog CEO Robin Kent seems sure of this, though: "That consumers are willing to 'pay' for their content by watching nonintrusive, contextually relevant, targeted advertising." Hmm. You know, I think I'd rather just plunk down some cash...but would you mind leaving the DRM out of it? For more information, check out this story at

Source: Yahoo