MSN Music to ex-customers: So you thought you bought that song for life, eh?

MSN Music to ex-customers: So you thought you bought that song for life, eh?

Summary: So, Microsoft gives customers of now defunct MSN Music a final farewell kick in the teeth by pulling the plug on any future downloads or license activations. Your existing music will work until the authorized PC dies, after which it's back to the store to repurchase the music.

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TOPICS: Microsoft
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So, Microsoft gives customers of now defunct MSN Music a final farewell kick in the teeth by pulling the plug on any future downloads or license activations. Your existing music will work until the authorized PC dies, after which it's back to the store to repurchase the music.

As of August 31st, we will no longer be able to support the retrieval of license keys for the songs you purchased from MSN Music or the authorization of additional computers.

To be honest, I've no idea why Microsoft has decided to take this course of action. Maybe the customer base is small or maybe integrating the old user data with the new system is complex, but either way it's a major blow for old MSN Music customers. While MSN Music has been defunct since 2006, users have still been able to activate new PCs to play their songs. This move effectively timebombs the existing content to the durability of the system activated at the time that Microsoft pulls the plug on the site. I'd say about five years on average, maybe ten years tops.

I guess that if you've only got a handful of songs then this isn't a big deal, but if you've got a substantial investment tied up in MSN Music downloads then be aware that as of August 31st, your content is living on borrowed time.

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What more is there to say than this move sucks for consumers who paid money in good faith to Microsoft, and serves as yet another example as to why DRM is little more than an excuse to pick pocket consumers. At least highwaymen used to wear masks when they robbed you. Now the robbery is done over the Internet.

Thoughts?

Topic: Microsoft

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48 comments
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  • Grammar police

    you?re content -> your content (unless you are content).
    e-man_z
    • Time to turn in your badge sparky

      Theirs no thing wrong with that they're sentence structure.
      Ethical_Loner
  • I think that's called a call for class action

    didn't I hear attorney laughing and evluating future fees ?
    s_souche
    • Akimbo did the same thing

      I can see it now. Charges of

      Deceptive advertising
      Breach of contract
      Selling defective merchandise

      Add them to the list of companies that
      dropped their customers.

      Akimbo (www.akimbo.com) did the same when they
      sold their video-on-demand player and service to hapless
      trusting customers including your truly.

      Don't buy anything from Akimbo or its partners.
      Just as with MSN, you may get screwed.
      rosanlo
  • Come on Adrian, I'm sure you really know why.

    "To be honest, I???ve no idea why Microsoft has decided to take this course of action."

    People are daft enough to buy anything with a MS label on it as thats all they know and because most people are intimidated by computers, they'll do what ever they are told as they think MS knows best. If these people weren't "scared" of their PCs most of them would have voted with their wallets and bought another OS that didn't get bombed by malware of all kinds. If their cars broke down in the same manner and frequency, they'd soon change them.
    Basically MS does whats suits them and not you.
    deaf_e_kate
    • Give me a break

      Apple does the same thing with their AAC DRM-protect itunes product. The problem is DRM, not MSN.

      It's just inane to listen to Mac people constantly venting. Be happy with your 3% PC mkt share. It's quaint.
      nycebo
      • That is the odd part

        When Apple does it, enthusiast proclaim that "the record companies force Apple to do that", yet let Microsoft do the same and that reasoning is never thrown on the table.

        Business as usuall
        GuidingLight
        • Winner take all

          [i]When Apple does it, enthusiast proclaim that "the record companies force Apple to do that", yet let Microsoft do the same and that reasoning is never thrown on the table.[/i]

          That's what happens when the stakes are winner takes all.

          Among other things, it means that consumers make decisions based on their perception of long-term survival rather than product merit. For instance, MS' "Plays for Sure" initiative owed its success [1] to the market perception that Microsoft would eliminate all other players.

          The "winner takes all" rules of engagement can be self-fulfilling, too. There's no real reason why the market couldn't have supported both HD and Blue-Ray, but as soon as one got the upper hand the Flash couldn't have outrun the exodus.

          [1] Such as it was
          Yagotta B. Kidding
          • Blu-ray Disc

            It's "Blu-ray Disc", not 'Blue-Ray'. Also, 'HD' on its own could mean many things but plain 'HD' with 'Blue-Ray' doesn't make much sense either. Is typing out "HD-DVD" so much of a pain? Also, why are so many rack servers targeted at Super Mario Bros. (SMB)? Or is it "Super Monkey Ball"?
            TreyTable
        • I won't defend lockin by any company

          I'm no fan of Apple the company but they produce great OS and good looking hardware. Just glad i'm not a fashion victim.

          As far as I'm concerned computing is, by its nature, collaborative hence everything must be open. MS and Apple can still be open and proprietory but being open is not in their business plan no matter how many bits or marketing come out claiming to be "open".
          deaf_e_kate
          • Open Door Policy?

            But if the DRM-Music was not DRM, then you'd be stealing from yourself. ;)
            TreyTable
        • Funny MS fanboy

          When Apple does it...

          Please explain when that hapenned? As I know Itunes is well and alive and dont remember any itunes client receiving a notification about the cancelation of the service, you must know something we ignore...

          PF
          theo_durcan
      • I don't disagree

        Adrian raised an issue with MS's attitude so i responded accordingly.

        I see a similar issue with Apple. Their users are generally more informed/knowledgeable but are fashion victims. I hate lock-in of any flavour.
        deaf_e_kate
  • Increasing the temperature sloooooowly

    So the frog doesn't know he's being boiled..... until it's too late.

    Get your Microsoft licenses NOW! Quickly, folks! They may not last long. Could be the only "software" available that can prove you stole it after you have legally purchased it. Plus, if they can't prove you stole it, they'll disable it anyway, just to make sure you don't steal it again. How can you beat security like that?
    Ole Man
    • ...

      LOL ]:)
      Linux User 147560
    • The part I do not understand

      is that you do not mind Apple doing the same thing.

      Strange indeed.
      GuidingLight
      • why do you keep refering to Apple?

        Apple is not the subject of this blog. And yes, they have just as bad a company philosophy as MS.
        deaf_e_kate
      • No you don't understand do you?

        First, WHY DO YOU keep bringing up Apple.

        Second, my Tiger and Leopard license don't require activation from an Apple server. They don't tell me, ever, that I pirated the OS as they can't. It's not in the code. There is no license key on the OS disk either. This is also true of iLife and iWork.

        On the other hand, I have suffered WGA false positives and Windows telling me I need to buy a new license. That's when I moved that laptop to Linux. I have also had Office 2003 FPP Retail and Project 2002 Upgrade Retail make me call MS to activate them. This occured after I took my second laptop to Linux (wiped the drive of all Windows partitions and did a clean ubuntu install) at the same time I bought a MacBook Pro and installed a new Windows XP Pro FPP Retail and moved these Office licenses to the new XP install on Boot Camp.

        Funny that the only software vendor that has hassled me for legally purchased software licenses is MS. My greatest fear is that someday my licenses won't be honored or activated and I will be out over $1,000 dollars in the MS products that I own and use on only one computer ever. This article about MS tactics indicates that scenario seems only all too possible...
        jacarter3
      • I will apologize to you

        If you can produce a link to one post of mine claiming that "I do not mind Apple doing _________" fill in the blank, anything.

        Or were you just assuming that you knew what I would think?

        What seems to be your problem with Apple? Have they done you some great harm? Or are you just using them as a hypocritical defense of anything Microsoft does?
        Ole Man
    • Only humans

      Actually, that bit about frogs and slowly heated water is a popular myth. It's been tested several times.

      In reality, only humans are stupid enough to sit still as the heat goes up.
      caburlingame