Monday, February 25, 2008

Buy music online? maybe later

I've tried to buy an album online. Jack Johnson's new album.

I thought it would be normal to buy the album as I wanted to listen to it ASAP. I don't usually buy music: I use Last.fm to discover new stuff but didn't start actually buy music although I now have money to do that. There are more and more music tracks/albums i would like to buy. It's just that I didn't start doing it.

So when I saw Jack's new album, I thought: "let's do it".

I don't use iTunes. I don't buy the Apple hype. I "get" it but I don't wanna be a part of it. So I was happy to see Amazon offer free-DRM music to its customers. Unfortunately, that's USA only for the moment. If you use Deezer (a french music start-up) and want to buy a track, there are 2 links: Amazon and iTunes. The link to Amazon.fr (which says DRM-free) actually leads to the search result page for the track and the results are actually CDs. Same for Last.fm. The link leads you to the page of the CD. :-(

Okay, so who will sell me some mp3? I tried fnacmusic.com. The websites is terrible to navigate through but I finally found Jack's album. There are different ways to pay. It's not well done but I finally paid the album. The download process was terrible. It seems there was a bug because I couldn't download anything. I first thought it was my computer but I could finally download it 1 week later. The help section is really terrible. The whole experience was just a big mess.

But the worst part was when i found out i didn't actually bought mp3 but DRM protected WMA files (With some artist, you have the choice but not for Jack Johnson). What the hell am i supposed to do with those? I downloaded them with my parents computer. One by one. Terrible process. It seems the license was given to this computer, and after lots of reading, I found out I could transfer it with Windows media player to an MP3 player. Ouf! my player was compatible. Actually even that i couldn't do. and I tried listening to the files but I could only get the 1st minute of the song. There was something wrongly done in the process of getting the license. Never again.

Anyway, I finally found a way to download free-drm mp3 files. And not one by one. I won't describe how I did that. Let's just say it took 5 minutes and that I won't buy mp3 again before they make it simple and easy. Can't believe they could actually invent DRM protected files.

PS: The new album of Jack Johnson is a little bit too cheesy for me...

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