Apple is causing a bit of an uproar again:
Apple Stole My Music. No, Seriously.
Keep in mind that Apple (though they’re not exclusive to this kind of language) inserts this lovely paragraph into its user agreements. You know, that thing you click on without reading:
…IN NO CASE SHALL APPLE, ITS DIRECTORS, OFFICERS, EMPLOYEES, AFFILIATES, AGENTS, CONTRACTORS, OR LICENSORS BE LIABLE FOR ANY DIRECT, INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, PUNITIVE, SPECIAL, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES ARISING FROM YOUR USE OF THE APPLE MUSIC SERVICE OR FOR ANY OTHER CLAIM RELATED IN ANY WAY TO YOUR USE OF THE APPLE MUSIC SERVICE, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, ANY ERRORS OR OMISSIONS IN ANY CONTENT OR APPLE MUSIC PRODUCTS, OR ANY LOSS OR DAMAGE OF ANY KIND INCURRED AS A RESULT OF THE USE OF ANY CONTENT OR APPLE MUSIC PRODUCTS POSTED, TRANSMITTED, OR OTHERWISE MADE AVAILABLE VIA THE APPLE MUSIC SERVICE, EVEN IF ADVISED OF THEIR POSSIBILITY.”
I’ve seen the original blog post appear on both Metafilter and Progressive Ears, no doubt it’s getting even wider distribution. There are many individuals reporting similar incidents. Hell, Apple Music did it to my iPhone as well before I disconnected and disabled that piece of shit. The writer Jon Bois (of SBNation) wrote this back in March:
I thought I was the only one who messed up a sync and ended up wiping an entire music library that I had spent years building, but multiple friends have told me that they did the exact same thing. iTunes is like having your hand held by a robot who wants to walk into the ocean and die.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, these tech giants are not your friend. You can buy into their “culture”, use their products, swear unyielding allegiance, and they do not, will not, cannot CARE. They are in this not to provide a service that gives you joy. They are in this to make money and increase the value for their shareholders. They can do this by creating products and services that you like and will buy, but they’re not your friend. They are not accountable to you unless you’re a stockholder. A major stockholder.
Back in the beginning of All Things Internet, the founders of Google had a motto: Don’t Be Evil. It’s not exactly their motto anymore. If you upload music to Google Play Music, it can and sometimes will replace your music file with something it has that is similar. Say you uploaded the alternative tracks off one of the Led Zeppelin remasters, a live Gov’t Mule track, or Beethoven’s Sixth conducted by Karajan. There is absolutely no guarantee that you’re going to get Karajan and the Vienna Philharmonic, let alone the alt track of When the Levee Breaks. If you are a casual partaker of music, that’s fine. For a serious music listener it’s a goddamn nightmare.
My recommendations are simple. Stay off the Cloud. The cloud is unreliable and it is not there for your best interests, its there for the convenience and profit of your corporate overlords. Back Up Your Data and I don’t mean to the goddamn Cloud. OK, there are reliable online backups like Carbonite. But nothing beats having a few external hard drives. Hell, next time I’ll flush I’m getting another 3TB drive so I can stash it in a safe deposit box. And remember, Tech Giants Are Not Your Friend. They’ve all forgotten about Rule #1 a long time ago.