BTW...Since the very first time I used "OpenMG" I was wondering, what's so
"open" with it.
"Stéphanie Vanhove" <Stephani...@pandora.be> wrote in message
> OK this is it:
> I had Open MG jukebox on my old computer, and some *.omg files.
> But now I have a new computer, so I installed Open MG jukebox on my new
> But when I tried to play some of my omg files, it said "Cannot find the
> copyright information for the selected file(s)" !!!!
> OK this is just ridiculous, it 's bad enough that i cannot convert my omg
> files to wav / mp3, now it turns out that i can 't even play them with a
> newly installed version of Open MG Jukebox !!!
> And worst of all: these aren't copyrighted songs at all !!! They 're just
> recordings of my own choir, and it seems like i don't have the right to
> listen to them !!!
> This is it, I 'm installing Simple Burner and I 'm never using Open MG
> THANK YOU VERY MUCH SONY !!!
>Open Mg comes with a backup tool to backup your .OMGs (which needs an
>internet connection). After that you copy the files on a CD and you can
>restore them on the new computer using the same tool (and requiring an
>internet connection again). If you do this, your .omgs will work on the new
>pc just like they did on the old one.
>BTW...Since the very first time I used "OpenMG" I was wondering, what's so
>"open" with it.
I can only speculate, having a computer science background and
monitoring the advent of digital rights management to a minor degree,
that this type of crap is going to cause legitimate customers some
major grief, as Stéphanie seems to be experiencing.
As she posted, she has some files she recorded live of her choir's
performance(s). Furthermore, you can read throughout this group of
other's very similar beefs, in that Sony's retarded policies do not
allow for "ease of extraction" of tracks legitimately recorded such as
Even more interesting is that a recent poster mentioned that there was
a "copy-protected" CD he could not DL to his MD, and was wondering how
to do this. In a follow up to that post, the replier stated that he
used an optical connection between a SONY PlayStation 2 and a SONY MD
recorder to circumvent the copy protection on the disc in question.
What he didn't mention was the company that produced the CD, but given
what I've heard lately, I'm operating under the assumption the copy
protection used on the CD was the method developed by, yes, SONY.
Interesting that you can use SONY equipment to circumvent SONY's copy
protection routine, or at least that is my speculation.
But returning to the issue of "backing up" and "restoring" .OMG files
as you wrote about. This is still a very major PITA, particularly when
you're talking about audio files which the user created, as is the
case with Stéphanie. What if the hard drive that she recorded her .OMG
files crashed before she had the opportunity to perform the backup?
What if the internet connection was unavailable for either the backup
or the restore process? What if the computer on which the files were
stored didn't have the ability to easily write off a large file set
(ie a burner or tape backup system?) Is Stéphanie denied the right to
access HER audio because of these possibilities? Obviously Sony cares
far more for itself than it does for it's customers, and personally, I
prefer not to do business with companies that have no concern
whatsoever for customer satisfaction.
What about U.S. law that provides the consumer with the right to make
archival copies of data (and this includes music) for safe keeping
purposes? Is Sony adhering to this law by preventing a user from being
able to play audio tracks of their children practicing their musical
instruments or speaking their first words? Sony, or no other company
for that matter, has the right to control what I can do with audio
tracks I've recorded as long as that recording is not of a copyrighted
I am, by definition, an extremely disappointed Sony customer, and you
can bet your bottom dollar I do everything I can to purchase products
made by any company besides Sony when those options exist. I learned
my lesson initially with their high quality, but retardedly marketed
Beta line of VCRs. Since then, my purchases of Sony products have been
restricted to Play Stations, and then only because there is no other
manufacture of the platform.
It has been suggested in another recent thread by someone like myself
who bitches about the NetMD product that the OP was uninformed, and
that they should have researched the product before purchase, as
opposed to pissing and moaning after the purchase. And if I had
researched the product before I made the purchase, I would not have
wasted my money on the NetMD product. There are a great variety of
customers in the world, from the ignorant to the well informed. I
wouldn't say that I am on the side of the ignorant, because with very
few exceptions I have always been extremely pleased with my purchasing
decisions. This leads me to believe that in most cases I am adequately
capable of interpreting the marketing literature and specifications
imprinted on the product's container. Interestingly enough, the
biggest purchasing disappointments I've encountered have had Sony's
logo stamped on them. Thankfully I'm not stupid enough to buy into
Sony's VAIO or Memory Stick technologies.
Returning to the "legitimate ownership" of digital audio, though, I
wonder who Sony thinks they hurting with their SCMS (or whatever it is
called?) No pirate in their right mind is going to store their
information using Sony's OMG format, and if they use a MD to hold
audio tracks with, most likely it's only going to a remote playback
device. It takes incredible marketing and engineering brilliance, ala
Beta-Max style, to hurt the legitimate users of their products, when
nothing Sony is capable of doing is going to reduce the activity of
the pirates. As I've written before, *nothing* that can be locked can
be done so securely as that it can not be unlocked; the only reason
OMG hasn't been cracked yet is because those who Sony intends to
thwart with it are smart enough not to depend on it in the first
place! Nothing Sony (or anyone else, for that matter) can do,
technologically speaking, is going to curtail piracy. Reasonable
marketing practices would go much further to reducing piracy than some
form of half-baked technology. Pirates take note: With the
Intel/Microsoft consortium considering the Fritz (a senator in my own
state; argh!) you may wish to start considering stock-piling older,
although not ancient, computers as your friends, families, and
colleagues begin to toss them out.
Case in point; my Play Station 1, which I played *very* heavily,
(compared to almost no use of my Play Station 2) has a similar "copy
protection" scheme imbedded in it by Sony. One of my favorite games
for that platform was Battle Arena Toshinden II (BAT2), and I spent an
incredible amount of time playing that game. A fair number of people,
my then-young son included, were used to loading the BAT2 disc into my
PS1, and the $40 disc did procure enough scratches until it came to
the point where it was unplayable. Fortunately I had spent $10 on a
mod-chip for the PS1, so I was able to play some one of the 25-cent
backups I had made of BAT2 without having to go plunk out another $40
for the game. If I hadn't been able to make a backup of my game, I
would have been out of luck; even more so today. I haven't seen a copy
of BAT2 on the shelves in some years. What about companies that
distribute music or software and then go out of business? Should the
consumer be denied the right to listen or use to something that
they've paid a legitimate licensing fee for just because the
distributing company is no longer shipping the product? What if that
product is no longer manufactured, and has security measures
That being said, I also stand by my assertion that the MD is a decent
platform in spite of the anchors Sony attaches to it. If they pulled
their heads out of their asses I think they would have a very
reasonable chance of capturing a very large portion of the market for
portable audio and data storage/transport. By the same token, I am
also well aware of how much superior Beta-Max is to VHS, but it takes
a casual stroll through almost any electronics store or department to
see how well those Beta-Max's are selling. You'd think Sony would look
at the numbers and figure out what's going on, but the truth is there
is a far greater profit margin on audio discs than there is on audio
play back equipment. Consider that it costs more to produce audio
cassettes than it does audio CD's, and yet CD's still cost the
consumer more to purchase.
The pirate's aren't the RIAA's worst enemy; the RIAA is it's own worst
enemy, and Sony's sitting right there smack in the middle of it. If it
wasn't for the outrageous marketing tactics and fees of the RIAA,
piracy wouldn't be the issue that it is, and this whole thing would be
much closer to a moot point. If the company can't trust the customer,
then why should the customer trust the company?
NetMD software? I could write far more on this, but I hope it's
sufficient to say that I've finally found a company that produces
shittier software than Microsoft.
Sorry for the rant, but no company should ever step on the rights of
the consumer as Sony has done with Stéphanie, and it really gets my
My book on pointers was delivered to the wrong address.
Sorry about the previous book; perhaps it's time to start a new
I installed the software, which took quite some time on my old P-II with
300MHz. I was even more disappointed when I found out that my MP3's had to
be converted to ATRAC, which again took some time because of the slow
processor. The next surprise was that the songs couldn't be deleted from the
device itself, I always had to run to my PC just to delete a song! Pretty
soon, of course I noticed that I could import neither analogue nor digital
I had a copy protected CD, which couldn't be imported in OMG (oh my god!!!).
I tried to record it via the optical input, but it wouldn't do either. To my
astonishment the CD had the Sony Music logo on it. (See this:
http://mitglied.lycos.de/skafidas/bh35.jpg) It was a CD with a built-in
player which had a terrible sound quality. This meant there was no other way
than the analogue line in.
I was extremely annoyed about all this and felt like my mother spending 350
euros (399.34 $) was way too much. The stuff we had got was everything other
than innovative and customer-friendly. It wasn't very environment-friendly
either, because I had to turn on the PC and wait for ages to delete a song.
Just to comply with the ridiculous anti-piracy policies of the RIAA and a
bunch of other organizations, Sony had made all this very circumstantial.
There are different companies that want to prevent piracy, but the only
people who suffer are the honest customers. If I had searched for it, I
would surely have found a program to crack it. Although I had bought the CD,
I wasn't allowed to copy songs from it to the Net MD.
A month or two ago, the was a website that offered a free trial period of
their music downloads. I tried it and it didn't convince me at all: Of
course, I didn't get MP3s, no no, I got some WMDs which I had to play with
the Windows media player. It took some time again to get the license,
although I have a broadband connection and now a new computer. And again
there was no way of importing the files to OMG.
I'm fed up with all this and I bought another player on my own: A Sharp
MD-MT 200H (without NetMD, naturally) which is much better and has got some
features the far more expensive Sony hasn't. I rarely download songs in
Kazaa anymore, now I use Winamp + Streamripper to get everything stored
automatically on my hard disk. This way it's absolutely legal (since I am
recording radio songs for my own use).
I am truly disappointed of Sony and I too will avoid buying their products
>I got my MZ-N707 for my birthday last year. I thought Sony is a company that
>produce high-quality, customer-friendly electronics. I also liked the idea
>of having an MP3 player which doesn't need expensive memory cards like
>compactflash or smartmedia, but the far cheaper minidiscs (I didn't know
>that minidiscs actually store the music in ATRAC format). My first little
>bit of disappointment appeared when after installing the driver I didn't
>find an icon for the Net MD in "My computer".
Shy of my purchasing my MD for myself, our sentiments are the same.
What kind of company produces a USB based mass storage device these
days that doesn't show up in explorer?
>I installed the software, which took quite some time on my old P-II with
>300MHz. I was even more disappointed when I found out that my MP3's had to
>be converted to ATRAC, which again took some time because of the slow
>processor. The next surprise was that the songs couldn't be deleted from the
>device itself, I always had to run to my PC just to delete a song! Pretty
>soon, of course I noticed that I could import neither analogue nor digital
I've never tried to delete tracks from the device itself, since my
source is always MP3 files. And even with a snappier machine, the
conversion process from MP3 to ATRAC3 isn't always correct, and it
certainly isn't snappy. I'm *far* from getting those 32x transfers
they advertise on the package. I'd say, even over USB, that I *might*
be getting 4x.
>I had a copy protected CD, which couldn't be imported in OMG (oh my god!!!).
>I tried to record it via the optical input, but it wouldn't do either. To my
>astonishment the CD had the Sony Music logo on it. (See this:
>http://mitglied.lycos.de/skafidas/bh35.jpg) It was a CD with a built-in
>player which had a terrible sound quality. This meant there was no other way
>than the analogue line in.
Nice acronym and pic, by the way. I can't read the writing from that
photo; what does the paragraph under "Copy protected" say?
Though it doesn't help everyone, yourself included, I am thankful that
Sony's music distribution division doesn't distribute any music that I
am interested in. To the best of my knowledge, none of the CD's in my
collection are distributed by Sony. I guess I'm too old. :-)
As a Sony customer both for the hardware and software (audio disc) I
think I'd take the CD back to the store. If enough customers return
copy-protected CD's, Sony will lose a reasonable amount of profit.
Perhaps some profit loss will motivate them to reconsider their
stance. Do an analog rip of the CD before returning it; that should
make all of the money that Sony put into the R&D of the copy
protection go to good use. :-D
>I was extremely annoyed about all this and felt like my mother spending 350
>euros (399.34 $) was way too much. The stuff we had got was everything other
>than innovative and customer-friendly. It wasn't very environment-friendly
>either, because I had to turn on the PC and wait for ages to delete a song.
>Just to comply with the ridiculous anti-piracy policies of the RIAA and a
>bunch of other organizations, Sony had made all this very circumstantial.
I bought one of the "lower end" NetMD's, so I only plunked $195, which
includes the cost of 15 extra MD's and a set of ear buds with a
semi-automated winding mechanism. So I'm not that disappointed with
the amount of money spent. Plus, once you figure out how to
circumnavigate Sony's retarded software, it's not a terrible manner in
which to take portions of the MP3 collection with me in a pocket sized
>There are different companies that want to prevent piracy, but the only
>people who suffer are the honest customers. If I had searched for it, I
>would surely have found a program to crack it. Although I had bought the CD,
>I wasn't allowed to copy songs from it to the Net MD.
>A month or two ago, the was a website that offered a free trial period of
>their music downloads. I tried it and it didn't convince me at all: Of
>course, I didn't get MP3s, no no, I got some WMDs which I had to play with
>the Windows media player. It took some time again to get the license,
>although I have a broadband connection and now a new computer. And again
>there was no way of importing the files to OMG.
I haven't done much with internetworked music, so I'm not personally
familiar with the concept. But I can certainly understand the
disappointment in not being able to store the music in a usable
format. I assure you of this much; if I am unable to get a .WAV
reasonably easy from a particular source of music, I won't be
>I'm fed up with all this and I bought another player on my own: A Sharp
>MD-MT 200H (without NetMD, naturally) which is much better and has got some
>features the far more expensive Sony hasn't. I rarely download songs in
>Kazaa anymore, now I use Winamp + Streamripper to get everything stored
>automatically on my hard disk. This way it's absolutely legal (since I am
>recording radio songs for my own use).
How much music can you get on a disc without NetMD? The biggest
attraction to me is how much music (and how cheaply) you can store it
in a small area.
>I am truly disappointed of Sony and I too will avoid buying their products
Agreed. :-) And I certainly *won't* be recommending their products to
anyone without some serious caution. Negative word of mouth has to be
positive advertising for Sony. :-)
>I also liked the idea of having an MP3 player which doesn't
>need expensive memory cards like compactflash or smartmedia,
>but the far cheaper minidiscs
...that's one nice benefit. You know what else MD is great at? Battery
life. I keep my NZ-707 in my work bag and play it all the time at work,
in my wife's car and when I go on walks. I swap out the rechargeable
battery on Sunday evening. I've dropped my portable MD unit a number of
times, I throw MiniDiscs into my car's cupholder, on the floor, etc...
I've had exactly one MD go bad since 1996 and I have hundreds of MDs.
What I really like MD for is making mixers (what we used to do with
tapes) and then adding / moving / deleting / cutting / combining songs
as a grow to like/dislike tracks on the mixer (what we can't do with
tapes or CD-Rs). The check-in/check-out thing is annoying, but is SOOOO
much better than what we had with tapes, CDs and pre-NetMD minidisc.
OK, I'm done :)
Kenneth F. Krutsch
Reply-To: k e n at k r u t s c h dot c o m
>The paragraph is in German. It says:" This CD is protected against
>unlicensed duplication. It is suitable for all audio devices and most CDROM
>drives, but might not be playable on some computers."
Thank you very much for the elaboration!
Programmer: One capable of communicating with inanimate objects.
>Man, oh man... Net MD devices are not USB mass storage devices, which is
>why they do not show up under My Computer. The 32x transfer rate is
>just that: the transfer rate. If you need to convert your MP3s first,
>well the file needs to convert first and that isn't part of the time
>spent transferring. I rip my CDs as ATRAC3 files and they really do
>transfer very fast. Someone's first comment hit it right on the head:
> >I also liked the idea of having an MP3 player which doesn't
> >need expensive memory cards like compactflash or smartmedia,
> >but the far cheaper minidiscs
Thank you for the clarification; I tend to forget the conversion time
in the time. But I really don't see that much of a speed improvement
if I use Simple Burner with an audio disc, or if I "preconvert" using
Sonic Stage and download the ATRAC3 files from there. As such, I
follow the Simple Burner route as it results in less hard drive space
The ability to use cheap media is definitely the MD's strong point, as
is it's small form factor.
>...that's one nice benefit. You know what else MD is great at? Battery
>life. I keep my NZ-707 in my work bag and play it all the time at work,
>in my wife's car and when I go on walks. I swap out the rechargeable
>battery on Sunday evening. I've dropped my portable MD unit a number of
>times, I throw MiniDiscs into my car's cupholder, on the floor, etc...
>I've had exactly one MD go bad since 1996 and I have hundreds of MDs.
Battery life is *awesome*! I've had my MD for a month or so, and I
bought eight batteries when I bought the unit. I'm still on the first
battery, and I think there is plenty of life left in it.
>What I really like MD for is making mixers (what we used to do with
>tapes) and then adding / moving / deleting / cutting / combining songs
>as a grow to like/dislike tracks on the mixer (what we can't do with
>tapes or CD-Rs). The check-in/check-out thing is annoying, but is SOOOO
>much better than what we had with tapes, CDs and pre-NetMD minidisc.
I haven't gotten that far yet, but I can certainly appreciate the
sentiment. I do my mixes creation/modifcation using WinAmp and some
software I developed, and then download the results of that to various
mini discs, audio CDR's, or MP3 CD-RW's, depending on my desires at
> I rarely download songs in
> Kazaa anymore,
Did it ever occur to you that its server technologies like Kazaa and others
that cause recording labels like Sony to take this kind of action?
Personally, I can't blame them for doing it, and while it'd be nice for it
to allow those who write original music, or indeed listen to uncopyrighted
music to do with their work as they see fit, the NetMD format is still in
relatively early days.
If the hardware/software doesn't suit your application, don't buy it. It's
not like there isn't enough warnings on newsgroups like this one!!!
I'm not sure that the Web has enough space on it for that.
I think Sony were a little bit economical with the truth in their
advertising of the product. I bought it initially for similar reasons as
you did and soon found out how hobbled it was. I use it now as a straight
forward recording device so I can take my music which I have copied from
*my* CDs out with me when on holiday. As far as my original reason for
buying one I (and it looks like you) would be better off with an mp3
player/recorder that can record via microphone and has a hard disk for
recording to. They also are able to record and store photos and other
data....but, it will not be from Sony.