Saturday, September 13, 2003

Alternatives to Kazaa

I've started researching music download programs since the RIAA has been successful in spooking me with their heavy-handed tactics toward sueing people. Since I use RealOne Player for just about everything I do audio-wise on the computer, I received one of their promotion emails for the Rhapsody program. I checked it out and if I was simply interested in listening to any artist I could imagine, this may be the service for me. It's $9.99 a month with a free two-week trial period. The service also allows you to download CD quality music for $0.79 a song.

So I started doing some math. If I downloaded about 18 songs a month (about what I can fit on a CD) and was a member for a year, each CD would cost me $24. However, if I download 72 songs (the equivalent of 4 CDs) in the free two-week trial, then it would have only cost me $14.22 per CD. But a very personalized CD. I know it's sort of scamming the system, but they still get my money either way. I guess I'm looking for a service that offers great music selection (obscure and well-known), unlimited downloads, and possible streaming at a reasonable price. I had been a subscriber to Emusic for a couple years, but they simply didn't have enough well-known artists to make it worth my time and money. If you know of a legitimate service that I can try, let me know.

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