The relationship between Anonymous and the recording industry could not be described as copacetic. Nor is this likely to improve things: Wired reports that a band of affiliated coders is building its own open social music platform. Naturally, it is named Anontune.
This is just the latest in a series of sites and applications built either by Anonymous or by coders claiming to represent Anonymous. Last month it was an OS; yesterday came word of AnonPaste, an alternative to text-sharing site Pastebin. Just this morning, social networking alternative Anonybook accidentally sent a boob shot to Gawker.
But illegal music downloading has long been the white-hot center of the Internet security discussion, so Anontune isn’t a terribly surprising development. In fact, Anonymous promptly brought down the DOJ, RIAA, MPAA, and Universal Music Group websites in retaliation for the Megaupload raid.
In a video released under the name of Anonymous, the organizers condemn damage done to online music by “the fat hands of corporate involvement” and introduce their solution. They promise they’ll neither host nor allow the downloading of copyrighted music. Instead, they’ve built a “music engine” that pulls information (they are careful to emphasize it’s just information, not files) from around the Internet. Wired explains that a user would create a playlist, and Anontune would gather up the songs in that playlist from places like YouTube.
The Anontune creators promise in their video that “this time the law will be on our side.”
One representative told Wired:
We would say stuff like, “People really use YouTube as a music player yet it really sucks for that purpose … it’s too unorganized,” the anon wrote to Wired. “And then, ‘YouTube does make a good music player but you can’t play all your songs on it since the obscure ones aren’t uploaded,’ then eventually, ‘Hmmm, what if you were to combine music websites like Myspace, Yahoo, YouTube and others?’”
The current version is merely a prototype, but you can check it out here. That said, Betabeat feels obligated to remind readers about the supposed Anonymous OS, which the hacker collective disavowed and denounced as “wrapped in trojans.”
Betabeat wonders if “I Fought the Law” is available yet.