Today on WSAV Tech Tuesday, we answer the question, Who owns your digital music collection? If you think you do, you might be surprised.
Recently, several Internet sources reported that Bruce Willis was suing Apple over the right to leave his iTunes music collection to his daughters after he passes away.
The story proved to be untrue, however, it did call attention to the fact that, contrary to what most people believe, those of us with extensive digital music collections don't actually own the music we purchase; rather, we are purchasing a license to listen to that music on a limited number of devices for the rest of our natural lives. And that license to listen is non transferrable.
iTunes is not alone in this policy. Amazon, Google Play, and other major digital music providers have similar clauses buried within their user license agreements. It seems that the tradition of leaving your record collection to your loved ones is on the verge of extinction.
So what can you do, short of only buying hard copy music, to preserve your music collection for posterity?
- Backup your music: CD, DVD, external hard drives, or cloud storage
- Keep a record of your iTunes (or other music service) account information. Your heirs won't be able to transfer your music into their collection, but with your account information they will be able to add and remove devices that are authorized to play music from your collection.