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Found 33 results

  1. UPDATE: 9 p.m. EDT — In a statement to International Business Times regarding the hacking of some user accounts, Spotify said Tuesday evening: “We monitor Pastebin and other sites regularly. When we find Spotify credentials, we first verify that they are authentic, and if they are, we immediately notify affected users to change their passwords.” UPDATE: 7 a.m. EDT — According to some other hackers and people familiar with such matters, the Spotify hack is actually just a dump of resused passwords, and the lack of complex passwords in the list was mentioned as one of the proofs for the claim. If true, and your account details are in that list, it is all the more reason for you to change your password to a complex, secure one. And you should do that not only on Spotify, but for all your online accounts. Original story: Late Monday night, a hacking group revealed the login credentials of thousands of Spotify accounts. In its announcement on Twitter, the Leak Boat said it was 9,000 accounts, but the page that listed all the account details had information of fewer than 6,500 Spotify subscribers. The group, which has previously released hacked accounts from various websites, as well as private videos and photographs of several celebrities, posted the information on a publicly available website. To check the authenticity of the claim, the International Business Times tried a few randomly chosen username and password combinations, and they all gave access to the Spotify subscribers’ accounts. To know if your account was among the 6,410 that are listed on this public page, head over to it and check for your username. If you find your login information on the page, and don’t want it compromised any further, we recommend you change your password immediately. And if you use the same login credentials, especially the same password, on any other websites, we recommend you change those too. Otherwise, you run the risk of having your other online accounts being compromised as well. The Spotify users hacked Monday night are from all over the world. International Business Times has reached out to Spotify for comment, but the music streaming service has yet to respond. Following the Spotify leak, the Leak Boat also invoked recently ousted FBI Director James Comey, in a sarcastic bid to reassure anyone worried by its activities. Members of the Leak Boat seem to have been busy Monday night. They also released a few login credentials for wizard101.com, a website to play a wizard game. The group said it was for kids to enjoy. If you have an account on the website, you can check if you were compromised by checking for your login details on this page. If your account was hacked, you should consider changing your password not just on wizard101.com but on all other websites where you use the same password. Shortly before leaking the Spotify accounts, the group, whose Twitter handle is @SecTeamSix_, said it was considering starting a “Lulzcalypse” — a reference to starting an apocalyptic storm of leaks, only for laughs, at least as seen from its point of view. In later tweets, the group referred to it as a “Leakocalypse,” presumably not finding it all so funny any more. But the very next tweet after the “Lulzocalypse” one from the group said it would release 10 more private videos and/or photographs of celebrities, if it reached 600 followers on the social media platform. The group had 490 followers on Twitter at the time this story was written. Article source
  2. A deal with Universal making things a little less universal Spotify has announced that it’s signed a multi-year license agreement with the world-leading Universal Music Group that will see its premium paid-tier users get exclusive access to content for a limited time. In an official statement, Daniel Ek, Chairman and CEO of Spotify, said that Spotify knows “that not every album by every artist should be released the same way” and that he and his team have “worked hard with UMG to develop a new, flexible release policy.” As a result, artists signed to Universal will now be able to release their new albums exclusively on Spotify premium for a period of two weeks, offering paid-tier users the chance to access content earlier than free users. For a limited time only Ek added that singles will still be available across Spotify “for all [...] listeners to enjoy” but that subscribers would have “an earlier chance to explore the complete creative work.” This is a crucial, though not complete, turnaround for Spotify, a company which has always staunchly opposed exclusives and defended its policy of giving paid and free users equal access to content. However, rumors have been circling for a while that Spotify has been looking to renew its multi-year agreements with the major music labels ahead of launching an IPO appeal with Wall Street and in light of this, this kind of compromise isn’t all that surprising. By giving Universal a greater say in how its artists’ new music is released on the service, the New York Post reports that it’s been able to convince Universal to take a smaller chunk of revenue, thereby increasing Spotify’s profitability and its chances of a successful IPO launch. There’s also a chance that giving artists increased control over how their content is distributed could make Spotify more attractive as a service to them. The well-documented spat between Taylor Swift and Spotify over the service’s insistence on offering all its content for free is an example of how its universal free access wasn’t appealing to everyone. This was only further highlighted when popular artists such as Beyonce and Kanye West took their music exclusively to other services like Apple Music and Tidal, leaving Spotify users out in the cold. Timed premium exclusives is arguably a small price for Spotify to pay to increase the profits it’s bringing in and it doesn’t suggest that its free service is going anywhere any time soon. However, it does set a precedent that could potentially result in greater differences between the service offered to its free and premium users. Source
  3. SSD modules like this one are being abused by Spotify For almost five months—possibly longer—the Spotify music streaming app has been assaulting users' storage devices with enough data to potentially take years off their expected lifespans. Reports of tens or in some cases hundreds of gigabytes being written in an hour aren't uncommon, and occasionally the recorded amounts are measured in terabytes. The overload happens even when Spotify is idle and isn't storing any songs locally. The behavior poses an unnecessary burden on users' storage devices, particularly solid state drives, which come with a finite amount of write capacity. Continuously writing hundreds of gigabytes of needless data to a drive every day for months or years on end has the potential to cause an SSD to die years earlier than it otherwise would. And yet, Spotify apps for Windows, Mac, and Linux have engaged in this data assault since at least the middle of June, when multiple users reported the problem in the company's official support forum. "This is a *major* bug that currently affects thousands of users," Spotify user Paul Miller told Ars. "If for example, Castrol Oil lowered your engine's life expectancy by five to 10 years, I imagine most users would want to know, and that fact *should* be reported on." Three Ars reporters who ran Spotify on Macs and PCs had no trouble reproducing the problem reported not only in the above-mentioned Spotify forum but also on Reddit, Hacker News, and elsewhere. Typically, the app wrote from 5 to 10 GB of data in less than an hour on Ars reporters' machines, even when the app was idle. Leaving Spotify running for periods longer than a day resulted in amounts as high as 700 GB. Spotify officials hadn't responded to Ars questions more than two days after they were sent. According to comments left in the Spotify forum in the past 24 hours, the bug has been fixed in version 1.0.42, which is in the process of being rolled out. The update remains unavailable to many users, this reporter included. And that means Spotify's drive-assaulting behavior continues unabated for many. According to posts in the Spotify forum (see pages here and here, for instance), the massive data writes are tied to one or more database files with titles that include the string Mercury.db. Users have proposed several manual techniques that are supposed to correct or mitigate the problem, but the most preferable solution is for Spotify developers to fix this bug and to make the update available to all users immediately. The performance of millions of storage drives may count on it. Article source
  4. Music Recorder for Spotify - Full Version Promo by Chip.de Overview: Links: Offer: http://www.chip.de/downloads/Musik-Recorder-fuer-Spotify-Vollversion_99958753.html Note: Limited Period Offer. Page in German. Optionally, use Translator here. Current Status: Open. More Info, Install and Activation Details: http://www.chip.de/bildergalerie/Musik-Recorder-fuer-Spotify-Features-und-Hinweise-zur-Registrierung-Galerie_104630604.html Page in German. Use translator here. Downloads: Giveaway - Offline Installer[Chip.de] From the giveaway promo page, click on "Manualle Installation >" and then click on ">> Download-Server CHIP Online" to initiate the download. More Advent Kalender Giveaways:
  5. Spotify is now free on mobile and tablet. Listen to the right music, wherever you are. With Spotify, you have access to a world of music. You can listen to artists and albums, or create your own playlist of your favorite songs. Want to discover new music? Choose a ready-made playlist that suits your mood or get personalized recommendations. Listen for free on mobile • Play any artist, album, or playlist on shuffle mode Listen for free on tablet • Play any song, any time Spotify Premium features • Play any song, any time on any device--mobile, tablet, or your computer • Download music for offline listening. • Enjoy amazing sound quality. • No ads – just uninterrupted music. • No commitment - cancel any time you like. Updated: Dec 01, 2016 WHAT'S NEW We’re always making changes and improvements to Spotify. To make sure you don’t miss a thing, just keep your Updates turned on. MOD: Unlocked Spotify Connect Seek FWD button added to information bar/tablet mod Visual ads blocked Audio ads blocked Seeking enabled Unlimited shuffle Choose any song Extreme audio unlocked Repeats enabled This app has no advertisements Download: ARM: Site: www58.zippyshare.com Sharecode[?]: /v/4g2kR0iU/file.html
  6. I want that artist to be on Spotify, here are my favorite artists for now: 8Dawn Adrian Von Ziegler Aleksander Dimitrijevic Audiomachine Brand X Music BrunuhVille Epic North Epic Score Epic Soul Factory EpicMusicVn Ezietto Fearless Motivation Fearless Motivation Instrumentals Fringe Element Future World Music Hans Zimmer Heavy Melody Iliya Zaki Imagine Music Intrumental Core Jo Blankenburg John Dreamer Lindsey Stirling Mattia Cupelli Michael Maas MythFox Peter Roe The Piano Guys R Armando Morabito Really Slow Motion Sound Adventures Soundcritters Thomas Bergersen Tunes Of Fantasy Twisted Jukebox Two Steps From Hell Xtortion Audio
  7. With Spotify, you have access to a world of music. You can listen to artists and albums, or create your own playlist of your favorite songs. Want to discover new music? Choose a ready-made playlist that suits your mood or get personalized recommendations. Listen for free on mobile • Play any artist, album, or playlist on shuffle mode Listen for free on tablet • Play any song, any time Spotify Premium Features: • Play any song, any time on any device–mobile, tablet, or your computer • Download music for offline listening. • Enjoy amazing sound quality. • No ads – just uninterrupted music. • No commitment – cancel any time you like. Whats new We’re always making changes and improvements to Spotify. To make sure you don’t miss a thing, just keep your Updates turned on. Patch by MrDude… Unlocked Spotify Connect: Seek FWD button added to information bar/tablet mod Visual ads blocked Audio ads blocked Seeking enabled Unlimited shuffle Choose any song Extreme audio unlocked Repeats enabled Info by MrDude : Here’s a properly modded version – which has spotify connect/tablet mod patched properly. Due to this being protected with modguard, some android users might find it’s not compatible with certain android versions. This is to stop other people copying the mods such as what happened with the video ads/audio ads from this release and the beta before it…….enjoy! For those that do not care about spotify connect and are using android lolipop – if this version doesn’t work for you use the O/P’s version. Mine is patched with the same mods (as they have been duplicated by the O/P), but mine has spotify connect ‘FULLY’ patched + FWD button for non tablet devices. (OP’s version isn’t). How To Install ? 1. Uninstall any Previous Version of Spotify Music (Skip If Not Installed) 2. Download and Install MOD APK From The Links Given Below. 3. Done, Enjoy Download: Site: https://www.datafilehost.com Sharecode[?]: /d/f84ba715
  8. There's something pretty alarming going on right now with Spotify Free. This started a several hours ago. If you have Spotify Free open, it will launch - and keep on launching - the default internet browser on the computer to different kinds of malware / virus sites. Some of them do not even require user action to be able to cause harm. I have 3 different systems (computers) which are all clean and they are all doing this, all via Spotify - I am thinking it's the Ads in Spotify Free. I hope this has been noticed and Spotify staff are fixing it - fast. But it's still puzzling something like this can actually happen. From what I have read so far I have understood this issue has been happening with Spotify Free before. Nevertheless, it's really dangerous for users and amazing how it has not been fixed. These malware launches probably happen during showing certain ads but malware / virus sites have nothing to do with the advertisers. Tells how big of a problem it seems to be (hacked server, spotify admin accounts etc)... Article source Read article Spotify Free opens web browser ads Free listeners got much more than they were bargaining for. Some Spotify listeners got more than just free music with their ad-supported software. Multiple users report that the streaming service was serving malware-laden ads that would pop up your default web browser in a bid to compromise your system. Reportedly, some of these didn't even require your input to do damage. And they weren't specific to any one platform, either -- Linux, Mac and Windows users all saw the same behavior, although it's not clear that the hostile code could damage all three platforms. In response, Spotify tells us that this was the result of an "isolated issue" with an ad, and that it has since "shut it down." Only a "small number of users" ran into the malware, it says. You can read the full statement below. With that said, it's bound to be slightly embarrassing when the company ran into a similar issue in 2011. It's also a reminder of one of the smaller perks of paying for a subscription service: when you don't get ads in the first place, you're not at risk of receiving rogue ads. "A small number of users have experienced a problem with questionable website pop ups in their default browsers as a result of an isolated issue with an ad on our free tier. We have now identified the source of the problem and have shut it down. We will continue to monitor the situation." Article source
  9. Spotify said to be in advanced talks to buy rival SoundCloud The Financial Times reports that an acquisition announcement is expected soon for the steaming service often referred to as the "YouTube for audio." Spotify is reportedly in talks to acquire rival music-streaming service SoundCloud in a deal that could be worth $1 billion. Music-streaming service Spotify is in "advanced talks" to acquire rival streaming service SoundCloud, the Financial Times reported Wednesday. An acquisition announcement could be made soon, according to the FT (subscription required), which cited people briefed on the discussions. A sales price wasn't mentioned, but Bloomberg reported in July that SoundCloud's owners were considering a sale that could value the company at $1 billion. SoundCloud is a popular source for music, with about 175 million unique visitors a month compared with the 100 million active listeners for streaming music service Spotify. Often referred to as the "YouTube for audio," it differs from services like Spotify and Apple Music by allowing people to upload tracks, which could beef up Spotify's appeal as it goes toe-to-toe with Apple. SoundCloud's catalog of music contains more than 125 million tracks, including tons of user-submitted remixes, mashups and covers. The Germany-based company rolled out a premium Go tier in March, which killed the ads found on the free version of the SoundCloud service. Spotify and SoundCloud representatives declined to comment on the report. Article source
  10. Spotify Music v6.0.0.864 Final Requirements: 4.0.3+ Overview: With Spotify, you have access to a world of music. You can listen to artists and albums, or create your own playlist of your favorite songs. Want to discover new music? Choose a ready-made playlist that suits your mood or get personalized recommendations. Listen for free on mobile • Play any artist, album, or playlist on shuffle mode Listen for free on tablet • Play any song, any time Spotify Premium features • Play any song, any time on any device--mobile, tablet, or your computer • Download music for offline listening. • Enjoy amazing sound quality. • No ads – just uninterrupted music. • No commitment - cancel any time you like. Please note: This app features Nielsen’s audience measurement software which will allow you to contribute to market research, such as Nielsen’s Audio Measurement. If you don't want to participate, you can opt-out within the app settings. Whats new We’re always making changes and improvements to Spotify. To make sure you don’t miss a thing, just keep your Updates turned on. Unlocked Spotify Connect Seek FWD button added to information bar/tablet mod Visual ads blocked Audio ads blocked Seeking enabled unlimited shuffle Choose any song Extreme audio unlocked Repeats enabled These are patched slightly different from previous versions - trying to block ads which occur when people use spotify connect with chromecast, as I don't have one of these devices i can't check that the added mods will work - they just add 2 extra function patches and try and stop the apk from reaching: pubads.g.doubleckick.net More info: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.spotify.music Download: arm: Site: http://www.mirrorcreator.com Sharecode[?]: /files/1CY3XZEU/Spotify.ver. x86: Site: http://www.mirrorcreator.com Sharecode[?]: /files/61WF1RJU/Spotify.
  11. A list containing hundreds of Spotify account credentials – including emails, usernames, passwords, account type and other details – has popped up on the website Pastebin, in what appears to be a possible security breach. After reaching out to a random sampling of the victims via email, we’ve confirmed that these users’ Spotify accounts were compromised only days ago. However, Spotify says that it “has not been hacked” and its “user records are secure.” It’s unclear, then, where these particular account details were acquired, given that they are specific to Spotify, rather than a set of generic credentials that just happen to work on Spotify. In addition to the email and login information, the Pastebin post also details the type of account (e.g. family, premium), when the subscription auto-renews, and the country where the account was created. The list of accounts is not limited to the U.S., but includes a number of users from all over the world. Spotify has dealt with security incidents in the past, so one can’t immediately assume that a list of emails like this is related to a new data breach. It could have been that a list of previously compromised accounts is still circulating. And only one of the accounts we tried actually permitted a log in, which also left room for doubt about the recency of this particular incident. But the victims we reached out to told us otherwise. So far, over a half-dozen have responded, confirming that they did experience a Spotify account breach recently. They became aware of the breach in a number of ways – for example, one said he found songs added to his saved songs list that he hadn’t added. Another also found his account had been used by an unknown third party. “I suspected my account had been hacked last week as I saw ‘recently played’ songs that I’d never listened to, so I changed my password and logged out of all devices,” the victim, who preferred to remain anonymous, told us. Several others said they were kicked out of Spotify – one even in the middle of streaming music. When trying to log back in, these users found that their account email had been changed to a new email address not belonging to them. To resolve the matter, users said they’ve had to work with Spotify customer service to get their account access restored. In none of the reported cases so far did Spotify reach out to the victims immediately following the breach, nor were their passwords proactively reset for them on their behalf by Spotify. This seems to contradict the statement a Spotify spokesperson provided us today when asked about this possible breach: But it could be that Spotify is still in the process of verifying the account credentials, which takes time. According to many of the users we spoke to so far, this issue occurred last week. The Pastebin is dated April 23, however. (TechCrunch is declining to link to the Pastebin page to protect the victims.) Some of the victims are only now dealing with the fallout. A couple said they received the email notification that their password had been reset on Sunday. “…I was definitely hacked and later tried googling ‘Spotify hack news’ last night to no avail,” one victim told us. “I noticed it last night when I opened Spotify on my phone and saw someone was using my account somewhere else.” The unknown party reset their email address, deleted a playlist, saved music to their device, and started following a new playlist. Others are still in the process of trying to prove to Spotify they are the legitimate account owner. “…The person was able to change my email address without a second verification, and now I’m jumping through hoops to close my account,” another told us. “I had to reach out to Spotify first, and it’s still ongoing,” a third said. “They’ve not been helpful, and I’ve only succeeded in getting my account locked so far.” Because of Spotify’s delay in resetting users’ passwords, many of the victims told us they’ve had problems that extend beyond the streaming service. Unfortunately, because people often re-use their passwords on other sites, several reported their other accounts have been hacked into as well, including their Facebook, Uber, Skype and even their bank account. It’s unclear why the unknown third-parties responsible for this incident would want to actually use the Spotify user log ins to play music – especially as that alerts the users to the breach. Typically, a hacker would want to simply collect then re-sell the credentials, which makes this particular incident odd. source
  12. Lyrify is a Spotify addon that automatically finds lyrics for your Spotify music. This means that you just need to play a song in Spotify and Lyrify will find the lyrics and display them in a separate window. Simply download and install it on any Windows computer. With its clean interface and useful functions it's certainly the most useful addon for Spotify available. Home http://www.lyrify.com/ Download http://www.lyrify.com/setup_lyrify.exe
  13. Swedish music streaming service Spotify has decided to transport its entire product onto Google’s cloud. The news was confirmed on the Spotify blog. In the blog post, written by the company's vice-president of engineering and infrastructure, Nicholas Harteau, it was explained how Spotify decided for the move as it could no longer scale fast enough to meet the demand. "But in a business growing quickly in users, markets and features, keeping pace with scaling demands requires ever increasing amounts of focus and effort. Like good, lazy engineers, we occasionally asked ourselves: do we really need to do all this stuff?", Harteau wrote. He also said that Spotify thought about the idea of migrating to a cloud platform for a long time, but the terms of business were simply not good enough before. We can thank the fierce competition between Google and Amazon for the drop in prices and the availability of cloud services we have today. Amazon is the oldest player in the game, and the usual number one choice, with Google being the top alternative. Harteau said Spotify decided to go for the latter as it had better tools. "What really tipped the scales towards Google for us, however, has been our experience with Google’s data platform and tools. Good infrastructure isn’t just about keeping things up and running, it’s about making all of our teams more efficient and more effective, and Google’s data stack does that for us in spades", explained Harteau. Wired reports that the company has so far shifted about 250,000 user accounts, out of 20 million subscribers and about 55 million additional users. The migration is planned to last 18 months. Article source
  14. Spotify is one of the most popular digital music service that offers cheap subscriptions and access to a huge music collection for everyone. Spotify literally offers millions of songs, both new and old, available from various platforms like Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, and is also accessible through its web app. If you do not really like the Spotify player for Windows because it appears bloated and uses too many system resources just to play music, then perhaps you would love Spotiamb – a minimal, small, third-party Spotify player for Windows. Spotiamb is a Winamp look-alike music player that can fetch your Spotify music playlists and play them without using much of the system resources. It is portable and small, but Spotiamb can be used only through premium Spotify accounts. So if you have only a free Spotify account then you would not be able to use Spotiamb. When you launch Spotiamb for the very first time, it asks you to enter the user-name and password for your premium Spotify account. If you miss this password prompt, then you can right-click on the Spotiamb window and choose Login from the right-click menu. After logging in, you can click on the Eject button to open up your Spotify playlists. You can then double-click on any of the songs or tracks to start playing it. You can also open a Spotify playlist in the web player, copy the link and then paste it in Spotiamb using the hotkey Ctrl+V. Basically, if you have used Winamp media player before then you will feel right at home with Spotiamb. Just like Winamp, Spotiamb also offers visualization plugins and you can actually use the visualization plugins from Winamp for Spotiamb. Additionally, Spotiamb also offers in-built Shoutcast server, so you can easily stream the music being played to any device supporting Shoutcast. You can download Spotiamb from http://spotiamb.com/. Article source
  15. Spotify, provides us with a free and legal way to stream music from a huge selection of artists. But that might change in the future, as Spotify is said to be working on an option that allows artists to choose whether or not their music is available for free accounts. According to sources of The Wall Street Journal, Spotify is in talks with record companies about this possible new rule, which the companywould first implement as a test. The purpose of this test is to check if limiting the amount of freely available music has an influence on the sales of subscriptions and usage of the service. Currently, the company hasn't made a decision yet about which artists will be able to join this test or limit the availability of their music, but it's been made clear that Spotify won't change their policy for all artists any time soon. At this moment, artists that provide their music on Spotify can only choose to provide it to all the users regardless of whether they're paying subscribers or not. This however has already sparked some issues with certain artists, for example: Taylor Swift removed her entire music collection from Spotify last year, citing that streaming music services didn't value her art appropriately by making it available for free. At first, she requested to make the new Taylor Swift album "1989" available only for paid users in the United States, but Spotify didn't fulfill this request, and as a result all her music was removed from the service. Right now, all of the content offered on Spotify is available for all members, though members with a paid account are able to listen offline, and without ads. The free version of the service limits you to the shuffle option, and has ads between songs. Spotify currently has about 20 million paid users and 80 million users with a free account. Source: The Wall Street Journal Article source
  16. New research published by the European Commission's Joint Research Centre shows that Spotify is helping to beat piracy. The researchers examined the effects of legal streaming on torrent downloads and found that Spotify displaces piracy. However, the overall impact on revenue is neutral as streaming also cuts legal track sales. When Spotify launched its first beta in the fall of 2008 we branded it “an alternative to music piracy.” With the option to stream millions of tracks supported by an occasional ad, or free of ads for a small subscription fee, Spotify appeared to be a serious competitor to unauthorized downloading. While there has been plenty of anecdotal support for this claim, actual research on the topic has been lacking. A new study published by the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre aims to fill this gap. In the study researchers Luis Aguiar (IPTS) and Joel Waldfogel (NBER) compare Spotify streaming data to download numbers from the 8,000 pirated artists on torrent sites, as well as legal digital track sales. Based on this data the researchers conclude that Spotify has a clear displacement effect on piracy. For every 47 streams the number of illegal downloads decreases by one. This is in line with comments from Spotify’s Daniel Ek, who previously argued that the streaming service helps to convert pirates into paying customers. “According to these results, an additional 47 streams reduces by one the number of tracks obtained without payment,” the paper reads (pdf). “This piracy displacement is consistent with Ek’s claim that Spotify’s bundled offering harvests revenue from consumers who – or at least from consumption instances – were previously not generating revenue,” the researchers add. While that’s good news for the music industry, it doesn’t necessarily mean that more revenue is being generated. In addition to piracy, streaming services also impact legal track sales on iTunes and other platforms. According to the researchers, 137 Spotify streams reduce the number of individual digital track sales by one. Factoring in the revenue per stream and download, the overall impact is relatively neutral. “Given the current industry’s revenue from track sales ($0.82 per sale) and the average payment received per stream ($0.007 per stream), our sales displacement estimates show that the losses from displaced sales are roughly outweighed by the gains in streaming revenue.” “In other words, our analysis shows that interactive streaming appears to be revenue-neutral for the recorded music industry,” the researchers add. More studies are needed to see how streaming services impact the music industry in the long run, but for now it’s safe to conclude that they do indeed help to beat online piracy, as often suggested. Source
  17. Do you use the music-streaming service Spotify? According to Wikipedia, more than 75,000,000 people worldwide do, and one of them is Forbes writer Thomas Fox-Brewster. Earlier this week, he received notification from Spotify about changes in its privacy policy. Such is internet life these days. At this point, Fox-Brewster did something we should all have done, but probably didn't: he went looking with some care to see what had changed. Programmers are used to looking at and reviewing each others' changes in a well-known ritual called a "diff," short for "checking the differences." The word diff, in fact, is the name of a widely-used programming tool that picks out and draws your attention to the changes between two versions of a file. For program source code that hasn't changed much, diff and similar tools do a great job, clearly denoting lines that were removed, new code that was added, and buggy lines that were changed. For web pages, however, diffs are a trickier prospect. Even if you use Fox-Brewster's links for Spotify's old and new privacy policy pages, save them as plain text files and diff them, the results are underwhelming because the changes aren't quite as regimented and as line-based as programmers' edits tend to be. For example, the sections about The information we collect have changed position, moving from part 2 to part 3 and getting new section numbers as well as new content. In the end, therefore, the easiest approach is simply to re-read the new privacy policy with the same care that you read the old one. In this particular case, fortunately, Fox-Brewster has done most of the work for you, noticing a number of new data collection terms and conditions. The old policy mentioned that Spotify would definitely collect "location information" if it could. That's now expanded to say: In other words: where you are, where you're going, and how you are getting there. There's more in the new policy, which also wants to do this: In other words: where you hang out, who you hang with, and what you do when you get there. There's no explanation for the scope of the words "media files," but it sounds like a pretty wide net, and surely includes at least music, podcasts, videos, screenshots, your reading list, articles you've saved, ebooks you've downloaded, and more. We can guess why all that sort of stuff might be valuable to a service like Spotify, and we think the new policy makes good business sense. We aren't going to pass judgement on whether sharing that information is worth it to you, because that's a decision you need to make for yourself. (Spotify does warn you in capital letters that it reserves the right to share that data with its own business partners that may be overseas, "INCLUDING [iN] COUNTRIES WHICH DO NOT PROVIDE THE SAME LEVEL OF PROTECTION FOR THE PROCESSING OF PERSONAL DATA AS THE COUNTRY OF YOUR RESIDENCE.") What we are suggesting is that Thomas Fox-Brewster's vigilance ought not to be something special, conducted to produce subject matter for security articles such as this one. Vigilance in checking and rechecking privacy policies is something that we should all do, not just for Spotify but for any other service that knows anything about us. Every time, even though it's a bit of a pain. The devil, as they say, is in the details. Source
  18. Spotify is generally considered to be a piracy killer. Thanks to the company's ad-supported free tier it guarantees a smooth transition from the dark corners of the Internet to a fully licensed service. However, Spotify is now warning that without its freemium option, piracy may surge once again. With the option to stream millions of tracks supported by an occasional ad, or free of ads for a small subscription fee, Spotify has proven to be a serious competitor to music piracy. Since its first release in 2009 the service has conquered the hearts and minds of many music fans. Currently available in more than 60 countries, it is catering to dozens of millions of users. In recent months, however, various prominent music industry insiders have called for an end to Spotify’s freemium option. With this move they hope that the company will increase its revenues and pay more compensation to artists and labels. This is not a good idea, according to Sachin Dosh, Spotify’s Vice President of content and distribution. Killing the freemium model may result in more subscriptions but it may also boost piracy. “We’ve done such a great job at Spotify of making piracy irrelevant, but that doesn’t mean it’s gone. It just means there’s no need for it right now,” Dosh told MBW. “You could create that need again if you follow the wrong path,” he adds. In recent years Spotify has caused a decline in music piracy rates in a few countries, something the company always envisioned it would. Having a free tier is an essential part of this chain. According to Spotify’s exec the music industry realizes the risk of canceling the freemium option, which suggests that there are no concrete plans to change its model in the near future. “…I think the industry does actually agree with a lot of this: instead of making free worse, the right answer is making premium better,” Dosh says. Spotify’s comments on a piracy revival are in line with what we warned earlier. However, it is not the only threat. The recent push for more “exclusive” releases are another point of frustration for many music fans. Various music services make deals to be the first to release new albums, such as Dr. Dre’s iTunes exclusive, making the piracy option relevant again for users of other paid services. This might not be a good strategy in the long run. On that note, Spotify also has to be careful with privacy issues. A change to the company’s terms and conditions now allows it to access photos, phone numbers and sensory data from mobile users, which has quite a few users upset. Now we don’t want these users, including Minecraft creator Markus Persson, to reconvert to pirates again, do we? Update: Spotify responded to the privacy concerns here. Source: TorrentFreak
  19. A service that helps users circumvent web-blocking injunctions handed down by the UK High Court has grown to become one of the country's most popular websites. Unblocked.pw provides instant access to dozens of otherwise blocked domains and is currently ranked 192nd in the UK, ahead of both Spotify and Skype. For citizens of the UK, web blocking is becoming a hot topic. Aside from the large and growing list of torrent, streaming and other downloading sites currently blocked by ISPs, netizens are now facing the specter of government enforced porn barriers. That’s according to Prime Minister David Cameron, who this week fired off a broadside against adult content providers who he says are failing to control what other people’s children are viewing online. “Our one nation government is working hard to make the internet a safer place for children, the next step in this campaign is to curb access to harmful pornographic content which is currently far too widely available,” the Prime Minister said. “I want to see age restrictions put into place or these websites will face being shut down.” According to the government the UK’s top 10 adult sites account for over half (52%) of all site views so this is no trivial matter. The site’s aren’t mentioned by name so TF decided to look them up. The most popular within the UK’s top 200 most-visited sites according to Alexa are Pornhub (#41), XHamster (#44), Xvideos (#47), RedTube (#92), TubeCup (#105) and YouPorn (#122). To give an idea of scale, PornHub is more popular than Netflix and YouPorn is more visited than Vimeo. However, while compiling this list we stumbled across something else that’s both surprising on one hand and utterly predictable on the other. Occupying the position of the UK’s 192nd most-visited site is Unblocked.pw, a service entirely dedicated to unblocking blocked websites. Breaking the top 200 is no mean feat for any site, especially when one considers the competition at that level. Nevertheless, after existing for much less than a year, Unblocked.pw is already more popular in the UK than both Spotify (#194) and Skype (#195). While the skill of the site’s operator is no doubt a factor in its success, the huge popularity of Unblocked.pw is almost entirely down to restrictions being put in place by UK Internet service providers. Every time a blockade is put in place, Unblocked.pw provides a solution to the problem. It currently unblocks most major torrent and streaming sites plus the specialist ebook archives targeted in May. “Fighting censorship has been the primary motivation behind running Unblocked,” the site’s operator informs TorrentFreak. “It’s to show that whatever regulators do to censor things online, there will always be a way around it. The initial motivation came from when The Pirate Bay was blocked in the Netherlands. We set up Proxybay.co to maintain a list of Pirate Bay proxy sites and show people how to create their own.” In respect of porn sites, Cameron’s office suggests that users could be required to validate their ages with a credit card, but the operators of overseas ‘tube’ sites will be extremely reluctant to introduce such measures since they will mess with their business models by reducing traffic and ad revenue. That will leave web-blocking as Cameron’s only other option but as highlighted by the Open Rights Group, that won’t work. “While the government can shut down UK-based sites, these are few in number and represent a tiny proportion of the global porn industry. Cameron needs to clarify how he wishes to achieve his goals, given that most porn sites are hosted abroad,” says ORG’s Jim Killock. “To block them, the government would have to introduce a national firewall, which would censor sites for everyone, and would likely be widely circumvented.” While there are currently no dedicated adult sites in Unblocked.pw’s repertoire (since none are currently blocked in the UK), there can be little doubt that if the UK government decides to order blockades, Unblocked and similar sites will quickly offer wordarounds. If that does indeed transpire, expect a successful service to break the top 50 most-visited sites in the country while jockeying for rankings with the likes of Apple and WordPress. It’s a battle the government simply can’t win, but that won’t stop them from trying. In the meantime the Internet continues to interpret censorship as damage, and routes around it. Source: TorrentFreak
  20. CloudFlare engineer Ben Cox says the official Github repositories of the UK Government, Spotify, and Python were accessed using likely compromised SSH keys. Cox says the keys revoked this month are subject to a compromised Debian OpenSSL random number generator seed discovered and fixed in early 2008. The security bod discovered the vulnerable keys in the hands of users with commit access to high profile respositories after he scraped some 1.4 million SSH keys from Github. “I used g0tmi1k’s set of keys to compare against what I had in my database, and found a very large amount of users who are still using vulnerable keys, and even worse, have commit access to some really large and wide projects,” Cox says. “The most scary part of this is that anyone could have just looped through all of these keys just trying to SSH into GitHub to see the banner it gives. “It would be safe to assume that due to the low barrier of entry for this, that the users that have bad keys in their accounts should be assumed to be compromised and anything that allowed that key entry may have been hit by an attacker.” The risk is that attackers could locate and crack the affected keys and a handful of others that used weak key strengths to insert malcode into popular projects. Cox has not attempted to gain access to the compromised repositories. Affected projects include: Spotify’s public repos (and any private repos those employees had access to)Yandex’s public repos (and any private repos the person had access to)Crypto libraries to PythonDjangoPython’s coregov.uk public repos (and any private repos the person had access to)Couchbase (and any private repos the person had access to)A ruby gem that is used on a large amount of CI systems (compromise of that, means compromise of your build server, and possibly your internal network)Github acknowledged the security risk but says it is a user security issue and not something which would qualify for its bug bounty program. Cox says that response was acceptable but adds Github should do more to stop users hurting themselves. He says about two thirds of Github accounts utilise SSH keys theregister.co.uk
  21. Spotify is a new way to listen to music. Any track you like, any time you like. Just search for it in Spotify, then play it. Any artist, any album, any genre - all available instantly. With Spotify, there are no limits to the amount of music you could listen to. Just help yourself to whatever you want, whenever you want it. All the music, all the time Think of Spotify as your new music collection. Your library. Only this time your collection is vast: over 13 million tracks and counting. You can create as many playlists as you like from this collection - just drag and drop the tracks you want. And because the music plays live, theres no need to wait for downloads and no big dent in your hard drive. You can listen at any time, no matter where you are. Through your computer or your mobile phone. Music to share Thanks to Spotify, its now easier than ever to share music. Youre free to share everything you listen to on Spotify with your friends - tracks, playlists, the lot. Just send them a link to a track or playlist and they can listen instantly. If you like, you can also collaborate on shared playlists. Social music made simple. Thank you for the music Having instant access to all this music is a wonderful thing, but what about the artists and musicians who make it? Were big believers in rewarding their creativity. Thats why we came up with a way to fairly compensate them for the music featured on Spotify. If they stop, the music stops. To us, its a no-brainer. What's new in this version (1.0.5): Spotify genres are BACK. As well as great playlists, you can find artists, albums and concerts updated daily. Long playlists don't take so long to load. Playing a song from a playlist? Click on the cover art and we'll take you straight to that track in the playlist. Playlists remember their scroll position from last time. Clever playlists. On Windows, the title bar shows you which song is playing. Now with less squinting. Track names are easier to read on smaller screens. To rename a playlist, click once to select it. Then click again to edit the name. Want to see what your friends are playing right now? Turn on Friends Feed in the View menu. When you scroll through a playlist, the playlist header scrolls with you. No more loud surprises. Set the same playback volume for all tracks in Settings. Homepage: https://www.spotify.com/ Download: http://download.spotify.com/SpotifySetup.exe
  22. Rumours Spotify is planning to cut its free streaming service to three months are lies, that’s according to a spokesperson for the streaming service speaking to Music Business Worldwide. In a blunt statement, Spotify said “It’s totally false. The model is working.” The comment should be an end to the discussion, but MBW say their sources are correct and Spotify is keeping it under wraps until the new streaming cuts are unveiled. Universal and Sony are reportedly pushing Spotify to make this change, following several high profile artists moving away from the music streaming service. Taylor Swift has been the most vocal, claiming Spotify does not evenly distribute the money made to artists. Warner might also be pushing Spotify to cut the freemium model, after CEO Stephen Cooper recently said the music industry should “burn the model at the stake.” Spotify claims the freemium model is working and given enough time may surpass the paid model, thanks to better advertising deals. It managed a 380 per cent increase in advertising profit throughout 2014, a great statistic to keep the labels happy. Spotify also plans video advertising to match YouTube’s massive growth. That said, with Tidal already available and Beats Music relaunch happening next month, it might be hard times for Spotify when it comes to negotiating contract deals, unless it plans on losing more profit in order to pay the music labels more per listen. Spotify may announce some of the changes within the next four weeks, followed by further changes to the music streaming platform in the later half of 2015. If it does do this, it might lose the confidence of the 45 million free users, although if music labels had their way this would be a small price to pay for a few million more paid users. Source: and more at MBW
  23. Spotify is generally hailed as a piracy killer, with music file-sharing traffic dropping in virtually every country where the service launches. However, much of this effect may be lost if recent calls to end Spotify's free tier are honored. When Spotify launched its first beta in the fall of 2008, we branded it “an alternative to music piracy.” With the option to stream millions of tracks supported by an occasional ad, or free of ads for a small subscription fee, Spotify appeared to be a serious competitor to music piracy. In the years that followed Spotify conquered the hearts and minds of many music fans. Currently available in more than 60 countries, the service has amassed dozens of millions of users. It’s a true success story, and one that led to a decline in music piracy rates in a few countries, exactly as planned. However, in recent months there have been calls to end Spotify’s free ad-supported service. Some prominent musicians and labels believe that killing the free tier will increase revenues. This week it was revealed that Apple is also pressuring record labels to end the licensing agreements that allow Spotify’s ad-supported deal, presumably to make its own Beats service more competitive. While Spotify hasn’t signaled that anything will change, killing the free version will be a dangerous move. In fact, it’ll be a step backward that is likely to increase piracy in the long run. Sure, when free users are forced to pay it will motivate some to sign up for a paid subscription. This will then lead to more revenue in the short term, something labels and artists will appreciate. However, in the long run the effects may not be so positive. One of the main appeals Spotify has for the public, specifically ‘pirates,’ is that there’s a free version available. Pirates like to try before they buy and Spotify free removes the giant hurdle to make the switch to a legal streaming service. Those who then like the service and want the ad-free experience will eventually convert to a paid subscription. After all, paying is not a problem for most ‘pirates’ who tend to spend more money on entertainment than the average consumer. Ultimately, the goal of the free version is to start changing the habits of pirates, and it’s been pretty successful at doing so. Besides killing the free version of Spotify there’s also a possibility that it may become more limited. Just before the weekend news broke that Apple’s Beats may also offer some content for free, and perhaps they would like Spotify and others to do the same. Again, this isn’t a particularly good idea. The magic of Spotify is that users can access a virtually unlimited library of music. A library that’s greater than what people can find on most pirate sites, and more convenient too. Limiting the library for free users will make it look less attractive compared to the pirate alternatives. As a result, people will be less likely to get hooked and less likely to make the switch to becoming a paid user. This brings us to the exclusivity issue. In recent years the music industry has excelled in making its music available to as many people as possible, often without restrictions. But now that some big artists are removing (or threatening to remove) their music from Spotify, or offer some content exclusively to other services, the overall appeal is waning. Music fans don’t want to pay for 3, 5 or 10 services to get all the music they love. They want it all in one place. While this may not bring in as much as everyone would like, it’s a crucial part of stamping out music piracy. A few months ago a movie industry report found that consumers in the UK need to use dozens of movie services if they want access to the most popular films. If the same happens to music, piracy will surely soar. All in all it’s safe to conclude that exclusivity breeds pirates. So if artists and labels are in it for the long run they should keep everything together, and make it easy for pirates to go legal. Source: TorrentFreak
  24. Spotify's Daniel Ek has poured fuel onto the raging Taylor Swift controversy. While explaining how less availability of Swift's music will lead some to obtain it without paying, Ek labeled rival Grooveshark a 'pirate' service. Now Grooveshark is biting back by reminding Ek that he was once the CEO of uTorrent. At this point it’s unlikely that readers will be unaware that Taylor Swift has removed her music from Spotify, complaining that the service fails to “fairly compensate” artists, writers and producers. “We were both young when we first saw you, but now there’s more than 40 million of us who want you to stay, stay, stay,” Spotify said in a response. “It’s a love story, baby. Just say yes.” Swift did not, despite claims from Spotify CEO Daniel Ek that the artist was on track to pull in $6 million from Spotify this year if she’d left her content online. Presumably she’ll still get few million dollars from the streaming service, but in a statement yesterday Ek said that reduced availability for fans will mean more turn to illegal services such as the world most notorious torrent site. “And sure enough, if you looked at the top spot on The Pirate Bay last week, there was 1989,” he said. While that revelation wasn’t too much of a surprise, nor the highlighting of YouTube as a potential magnet for fans who don’t want to pay, the decision by Ek to flag up a competitor as a pirate holdout has poured yet more fuel onto the Swift fire. “[swift's] songs are all over services and sites like YouTube and Soundcloud, where people can listen all they want for free,” said Ek. “To say nothing of the fans who will just turn back to pirate services like Grooveshark.” The gibe drew an instant rebuttal from James A. Pearson, EVP Corporate Communications at Grooveshark. “We would normally never comment on a competitive service and their dust-up with one of the world’s most popular artists. But as Spotify’s CEO — who it’s worth mentioning is the recent CEO of uTorrent — an app used by over 100M people, which had similar perception issues — called Grooveshark ‘a pirate service’ in his blog response to Taylor Swift today, we had to comment on that element,” Pearson said. On the history, Pearson is correct. In the early days of uTorrent Ek worked with uTorrent creator Ludvig ‘Ludde’ Strigeus before the pair sold up to BitTorrent Inc. in late 2006 and disappeared into the moonlight to create Spotify. Strigeus is a Spotify developer to this very day. Of course, mentioning uTorrent in retaliation to “pirate service” remarks doesn’t really help calm things down and only drags other third parties into the controversy. However, when looking at the spat from Ek’s perspective it’s not difficult to see why he’s irritated by Grooveshark. Search Spotify today for Taylor Swift’s 1989 and the only results returned are for cover versions by former cruise ship musician Robert W. Weber, aka Molotov Cocktail Piano. Search Grooveshark for the same and it’s an entirely different story. The odd situation here is that while Swift put her own music on Spotify and will get millions back this year as a result, she has now stopped that revenue stream by removing it entirely. On the other hand she didn’t put her music on Grooveshark but it’s there for anyone to stream, until she has someone pull it down with a DMCA complaint of course. Why the Spotify retraction came before the Grooveshark deletion is anyone’s guess. In a 2013 interview, Grooveshark CEO Sam Tarantino reported that in 2009-2011 his service had 35 million users. Today Spotify has an estimated 50 million so calling the services ‘competitors’ is probably fairly accurate, despite the differences in their business models. Spotify say they have paid $2 billion to artists while Grooveshark claims that licensing deals in place with thousands of artists has resulted in “million” in payments. However, up to now neither the company nor Swift have mentioned a specific licensing deal for the singer’s music. Until they do, Daniel Ek is unlikely to withdraw his statement. Source: TorrentFreak