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P2P Program to Match Files to Product Origin 56

Keiron Waites writes "A program to match p2p downloads with the original products they came from has been released. ShareMonkey is free software for Microsoft Windows, with an additional plugin for the Shareaza p2p application. ShareMonkey lets you right click on a file and choose "Where is this file from?", which will direct you to a listing of products that carry the file. ShareMonkey is a service for those p2p users that download copyrighted files in a "try before you buy" capacity and is an attempt to bridge the gap between copyright infringement and subsequent purchasing of a product."
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P2P Program to Match Files to Product Origin

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  • by Mr EdgEy ( 983285 ) on Monday April 09, 2007 @08:31AM (#18661581)
    Sounds risky. *Scrolls past to the Download option*
    • I'm sure the 5 people who honestly download copyrighted content on the internet to "try it before buying it" will enjoy this service.. but I doubt anyone will pay for it. Especially since they are downloading free content from the internet to begin with.
      People get paid for this.
      • by Gr8Apes ( 679165 )
        I believe strongly you're mistaken, or you know a bunch of freeloaders.

        I have downloaded content to see if I like it. It's been about 50/50 on whether I like the remaining content enough to buy it. I really wish I'd done that before purchasing "Who Killed the Zutons?". (The answer, btw, is "The Zutons")

        Why do I buy it if I already have it? Because MP3s in generally sound like crap. Why do people buy songs they hear on the radio? Same reason. Hint, if you really want to, you can record radio tracks and slice
        • by Xymor ( 943922 )
          So, as long it's low quality, it's ok to freeload?

          Will those people sharing lossless flac files will burn in hell then?
          • by Gr8Apes ( 679165 )
            Guess it's been a while since I've downloaded any music... :)

            But, when you're looking for something new and on the fringe, you usually don't find FLAC files from what I experienced at the time. But, I would buy what I like anyways, in support of the artists. I bought She Wants Revenge based on three songs I heard, and overall I'm pretty happy with them. There's a couple like the Zutons that made me wish I'd downloaded them first, because the single acceptable song on the CD didn't make it worth buying the e
        • by brouski ( 827510 )
          I do happen to know a bunch of freeloaders.

          They're called "average people".

        • Generally.. if someone plans on buying something, they are going to buy it regardless of how it sounded online. Granted there are a few times where someone will hear something they downloaded, and say, "Hey I need to get that," but rarely will someone download material like this as an attempt to "try it out" before buying it. A good example is that guy (you know him... we all do) that will download a movie 5 times to find a good quality version of it, and eventually give up and buy the DVD in the end. Th
        • I really wish I'd done that before purchasing "Who Killed the Zutons?". (The answer, btw, is "The Zutons")
          Awww man, Put spoiler tags at the top of your post next time. j/k
  • by mulvane ( 692631 ) on Monday April 09, 2007 @08:36AM (#18661625)
    I try before I buy on most everything. If this works as described, I could possibly find a cheaper solution than I am usually accustomed to. On the flip side, it could be used as a fingerprint tool to id the content you are trying before you buy and either delete or disable it somehow until you can prove you own a valid license for use. Time will tell.
    • by nystire ( 871449 )
      I'm just wondering if the "Notify the **AA" option can be disabled or not. :)
    • by hey! ( 33014 ) on Monday April 09, 2007 @09:34AM (#18662113) Homepage Journal
      Well, we've been discussing some interesting trends here recently.

      (1) the inability of the recording industry to find a sustainable business model for the Internet era.

      (2) the death of the album, tied to the fact the industry only knows how to sell pop artists whose métier is the three minute pop single.

      Something like this might well be a cure for both problems.

      The industry could release songs into the P2P universe where they'd be freely shared. The songs would sell pay downloads of collections. Of course people could start sharing the pay downloads, but I think this is less likely to happen if they make the pay download iTunes simple and iTunes affordable. If it's even just a little bit of a PITA to get the whole album downloaded, and the entire album is less than $10, then they'll sell a lot of albums. The important thing is to give consumer impulse a free reign.

      The problem with the recording industry as I see it is that they're facing a perfect business storm, of which downloading is a part, but other factors play as well, some of which are of their own making. The biggest problem with the industry now is a broader cultural crisis in music: as commercial radio is increasingly dominated by big companies running robot stations playing a small number of formats, there is less and less room for idiosyncrasy and therefore less room for creativity.

      Less creativity means that product innovation stagnates. Does there need to be more than, say, 100 new pop tunes a year, or a 100 new country-pop tunes?

      Commercial radio and downloads (say through iTunes) offer the same end use: somewhat random sequences of short singles tracks. They are not going to be able to go that well a third time and draw out significant new profits.

      The death of independent radio makes it hard to sell anything but singles. Corporations aren't going to risk valuable air time to play something that takes more than five minutes of attention, especially if it gets in the way of packing the maximum commercial time into the hour.

      Nowhere is this more pronounced than in the death of classical radio, which, aside from public radio (which is incresaingly turning to talk formats), had been a labor of love for a number of small stations. It would be in the music company's interest to promote interest in classical music, because while many people might download the opening movement of Beethoven's fifth, if you succeed in interesting them in the symphony, you've sold an album. Likewise millions and millions of people would download "The Ride of the Valkeries", but if you've hooked them on the whole opera cycle, you've hit the jackpot.
      • by cdrguru ( 88047 )
        If I understand you correctly you are proposing that people would pay for collections of stuff they could download for free and the value proposition would be that they wouldn't have to hunt down all the songs in the collection. Now maybe if you had an album of 10 songs and only one of them was freely available some folks might buy the album with the other nine.

        But I certainly don't see any disincentive to share the results of that purchase. You are still trapped by the "let's share" meme that pretty much
  • by Technician ( 215283 ) on Monday April 09, 2007 @08:50AM (#18661737)
    Wow, most of my songs are from Media Sentry! ;-)
  • Wait..... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by LordPhantom ( 763327 ) on Monday April 09, 2007 @09:14AM (#18661927)
    I'm not a lawyer, but I can't see this being embraced by many copyright holders for the simple reason that accepting this would to some degree weaken a legal defense of their copyright and/or damages in future litigation.

    • by uolamer ( 957159 )
      I dont see this being embraced either. From what i can tell this is simply a silly way for the makers of this program to make money. I use it on a file example.XviD.avi and they send me to using their referral code for that movie. It does hash the file and sends that along with the file name, so over time they might be able to do a better job. I just dont see it working that well, if your using it, you probably already have a good non-drm version of it. Why buy it at that point?
      • Well, remember the focus of this is on Software, not movies (IIRC), so in the case of software, things like support, etc. Not to mention some level of guilt in not paying for something that's actually useful to you (especially in the case of reasonably priced software).
  • by Odiumjunkie ( 926074 ) on Monday April 09, 2007 @09:21AM (#18661997) Journal
    If you're the type of person that would download and run an undocumented installer from a pretty much unknown source on a Windows box to find out where your files are from, let me save you some time:

    Your warez are the intellectual property of eastern-european content producers, and all have filenames like "BRITNEY_SPEARS_NAKED_FUCK_SEX_ANAL_REAL_GENUINE_H OT_ACTION.JPG.GIF.EXE"
    • This si FUCKING Crazy!!! Oh i know. let me try this prog for a while(insert Ip Logger)and let the owner find my ass qiuckly!!! HELL NO!! Bunch of dumbasses!!!
  • by RobOnt ( 1086037 ) on Monday April 09, 2007 @09:24AM (#18662023)
    Looooove the lack of a privacy statement on the website for the software.....
  • Finally... (Score:4, Funny)

    by mattgreen ( 701203 ) on Monday April 09, 2007 @09:38AM (#18662149)
    I can track down the origin of this readme.txt file I downloaded several years ago. I feel quite dirty about it to this day, and consider it one of the great mistakes of my youth.
  • Fantastic! (Score:5, Funny)

    by fragreaper ( 1043904 ) on Monday April 09, 2007 @09:40AM (#18662163) I can see how much money I have saved!
  • Isn't it actually freeware instead of free software? I can't get to the website to check and it doesn't have a Wikipedia entry.
  • by shadowspar ( 59136 ) on Monday April 09, 2007 @12:43PM (#18664719) Homepage

    OK, so I don't own a Windoze box, but they have a web-based service called ThankBand [] -- you upload an MP3 file and it (supposedly) tells you where to buy the music. I've got some J-Pop tracks lying around that I've never been able to figure out the artists for, so I go and give it a shot -- the songs had filenames like f12dac3oiawj9ret.mp3 and I can't seem to get any search hits for the bits of the lyrics I can make out.

    Uploaded file: (j-pop)unknown - unknown.mp3

    • Unknown Road
    • Mission Top Secret, Destination Unknown
    • Deep Unknown 2 - (10:45)

    Hrmph. Well, no surprise, that one's a bit obscure. Let's try something slightly more widely known:

    Uploaded file: (DDR)King Kong & D. Jungle Girls - Boom Boom Dollar.mp3

    • King Kong & The D Jungle Girls - Greatest Hits
    • Super Eurobeat '91
    • I Love ZYX: Italo Disco Collection, Vol. 5

    Heeey, not bad! I wonder...

    > cp "Jewel - Standing Still.mp3" foobar.mp3
    Uploaded file: foobar.mp3

    • FOOBAR: An artificial intelligence based finite element system
    • Corporate - A Pack of 2 DVds
    • Dr. Seuss - The Hoober-Bloob Highway

    What? Oh, don't tell me...

    > cp "Natasha Bedingfield-These Words.mp3" fredmbogo.mp3
    Uploaded file: fredmbogo.mp3

    • Sorry, there were no results found for your file. Please try locating the album below.

    > mv fredmbogo.mp3 "Ozzy Osbourne - Crazy Train.mp3"
    Uploaded file: Ozzy Osbourne - Crazy Train.mp3

    • Essential Ozzy Osbourne
    • Black Sabbath: Greatest Hits 1970-1978
    • Blizzard of Ozz

    Yeah, that's what I figured. Come on, guys; the motive is laudable, but any dumbass can go and type a filename into Google. To get a mention on the front page of Slashdot, you should really have to do better than that.

    • by jetxee ( 940811 )
      That's impressive. Thank you for testing and review. That's why I am reading Slashdot, because I am too lazy to do things like this myself.
  • ShareMonkey is a service for those p2p users that download copyrighted files in a "try before you buy" capacity and is an attempt to bridge the gap between copyright infringement and subsequent purchasing of a product.

    Doesn't matter. They'll either get the crap sued out of them, or be forced to give up their logs to the RIAA, which will just result in another round of "settlements."

    No thanks.

"You can have my Unix system when you pry it from my cold, dead fingers." -- Cal Keegan