ReDigi responds to critics
By CMU Editorial | Published on Friday 11 March 2011
The people behind ReDigi, the previously reported MP3 resale service, issued a press release this week answering various questions raised about the service since it first came to wider attention last month.
As previously reported, ReDigi lets punters resell MP3s in the same way you might resell a CD on eBay. Sellers are expected to delete their copy of the MP3 after resale. Some argue that copyright rules which specifically allow a consumer to resell a CD can be applied to MP3s and thus this kind of service is totally legal.
Others, however, suspect any successful MP3 resale platform would be a target for record company lawyers, who would likely argue that such services are really used by people to illegally profit from the sale of digital music files they have no intent of deleting from their own computers. Efforts by a company called Bopaboo to launch a service of this kind a few years back failed amid legal questions.
But ReDigi is certain its business is immune to any efforts by copyright owners to challenge the service. In the press release, the company says its platform uses various technical nick nacks to check that an MP3 set to be sold was acquired from legitimate sources, and that it is of suitable sound quality, as well as ensuring that any one customer only sells any one track once. I think that when you drop an MP3 onto the ReDigi sale widget it also deletes the original copy on your PC, though what’s to stop you making a second copy beforehand I’m not sure.
ReDigi CTO Larry Rudolph adds: “The technological development of the ReDigi Music Agent passes copyright and first-sale doctrine tests that have stopped other companies from legally being able to do this previously. If you have bought it, you are allowed to sell it. Also, you are allowed to buy something that someone else legally can sell. ReDigi is the technology used for this transaction. It verifies the legal origin, a seller’s right under the first sale doctrine and allows a user to resell a file that is verifiably his or hers to sell”.
So there you go. ReDigi will launch later this summer.