Defining Terms

Legally Listening

Today I signed up for a free trial at eMusic that lets me download 100 songs, legally, for free. If I cancel before my one month trial is up, I pay nothing and walk away with 100 songs. If not, they’ll start charging me for the service.

eMusic is a company that offers a subscription mp3 download service. For $10 a month, you can download 40 songs from their website. At $0.25 a song, that’s 1/4th the price of iTunes. Plus, the music is in mp3 format (high quality 192 kbps VBR), not in the weirdo copy protected format that iTunes gives you. This lets you copy, burn and convert to your hearts content. Exercise your fair use rights and keep a copy on your computer and a copy in your CD player. Got an mp3 player? No problem.

Another nice thing about eMusic is the Download Manager software that complements the website. It makes it easy to download a full album; it’s only one click away. The download manager queues your songs and lets you manage the downloads easily. It’s small and simple, and yes, it works with good browsers and operating systems.

While eMusic doesn’t have the selection of artists that iTunes does, I won’t have any problem filling my 100 song quota with artists like Woodie Guthrie, Cat Power, Bush, Dashboard Confessional, Rusted Root and an artist I mentioned previously, The Mountain Goats. Fortunately I tend to like independent labels better than the big five. However, they have a fair amount of popular stuff too, so that most anyone can find something interesting. Here’s to saturated broadband connections!