Some reader feedback on the question of which CDs to boycott. Xtracto commented on my request for a list of corrupted CDs by sending a link to a list he has been maintaining of Sony BMG protected CDs. His methodology is one that I was playing with: using Google to search the Amazon content and looking for CDs flagged as “[CONTENT/COPY-PROTECTED CD],” which Amazon has been pretty consistent about marking. In fact, it seems to me that we should be able to automate this search and make it more reliable by using the Amazon API and checking the label.
And Ken Nelson commented that boycotting Sony alone is too narrow a focus, arguing that the perspective should be shifted to looking at all clients of First4Internet. I’m not sure about that for the present time—it’s really a combination of Sony’s use of XCP and their response to criticism that has brought about the boycott. But it’s certainly worth noting that Universal’s MCA unit, Warner Music Group, and EMI have all been customers of First4Internet, notwithstanding EMI’s claims of innocence.
Ken also makes a point that one of the outcomes from this case is a clear need for customer education: everyone should know to check the label or the Amazon information for a disc before purchasing to ensure that it doesn’t carry one of these schemes. I think this means we need some artwork. Ken provides a blog button for a start:
(Thanks, Ken.) But this is only a beginning. Ideally we should have fliers that can be posted at retail locations or handed to customers. Any design savvy folks in the audience want to take a look at this?
Note: I’m not interested in merchandise—I’m not looking to sell anything, particularly not anything carrying the Sony logo or name (which means Boycott Sony t-shirts are out). I really want to see something that provides information to the customers. I have some reasons for this and will air them in a future post.