The Null Device

EMI Copy Control backlash

Quelle surprise: Those "Copy Controlled" CDs EMI have been foisting on the public aren't proving very popular. Apparently, they don't play in some car stereos, and the top-s3krit Windows software that auto-installs when you try to play the CD may do things to your registry without your consent. EMI, of course, won't tell you what it does because it's a secret and if people find out how it works, then the terrorists pirates will have won. I've heard of people successfully ripping them on Windows and/or Linux, though they may have been mislabelled clear CDs (given that no software automatically started).

I wonder how long until recorded music comes with a shrink-wrap license prohibiting you from circumventing copy-denial mechanisms or making unencrypted MP3s of it, and indemnifying the company for any changes made to your system software?

(I can't see EMI's security-through-obscurity scheme holding up for very long, especially since it doesn't rely on "trusted client" PCs or anything. Soon enough, some guy without a girlfriend will break it and upload the details to a server somewhere. Yes, he may go to jail for it, but that hasn't stopped virus writers.)

There are 9 comments on "EMI Copy Control backlash":

Posted by: Graham Wed Mar 19 13:17:20 2003

Well, it was pretty simple, really, what I did hold down the Shift key as the CD loads up so it doesn't activate Autorun. (Better still, deactivate Autorun altogether.) And then go berzerk with EAC or CDEx.

Of course, no such luck for Mac users.

Posted by: Peter Wed Mar 19 13:34:45 2003

First thing I do when I (re)install Windoze on a computer is turn of Autorun. It fucking sucks.

Posted by: Peter Wed Mar 19 13:35:26 2003

Oh yes, and EAC has no problem ripping those "copy-protected" CDs, and indeed I succeeded under Linux too. What did the Sex Pistols say about EMI? ;)

Posted by: acb Wed Mar 19 13:40:04 2003

Um, that they're cunts or something like that?

Posted by: little timmy http:// Wed Jul 30 10:57:16 2003

how can you rip the placebo sleeping with ghosts cd? i tried eac but it could only get up to track 7. it is really fuckin shit as it wont play in my car, my discman, my work computer (cant install software due to restrictions) or my minidisc player.

Posted by: acb Wed Jul 30 11:20:35 2003

Simple; go to and order the US edition; at that time, EMI's US operation was still releasing Red Book CDs (not sure if that's still the case). If you can't return the Australian edition and get a refund, use it as a drink coaster or something.

Posted by: little timmy http:// Wed Aug 6 09:04:53 2003

no i dont wanna spend any more money than i already there any way to rip it?

Posted by: Youssef Thu Aug 7 13:28:36 2003

Everything can be ripped.... for the right price.

Posted by: little timmy http:// Tue Oct 7 09:06:28 2003

i now have access to a linux machine.

can i rip it using this?