Green Ink

Well, I think I’ve finally turned the corner and become a complete loony. I bought the latest Kelly Willis album yesterday (fabulous if you like country music) and discovered I couldn’t encode it as MP3s. Copy protection aside, I found this hugely irritating as it means I can’t listen to it while I work. Bad, bad, bad. So, instead of fuming away, or finding a way around it, I fired off a mad email to Rykodisc. Honestly, if this were pen and paper, I’d have used green ink. Nutter Jemima. To my suprise, and joy, they replied, stating they don’t currently put copy protection on their CDs, but it’s a manufacturing defect. Read on for the ranty email…

—–Original Message—–
From: Jemima Kingsley []
Sent: Thursday, September 26, 2002 3:54 PM
To: Info @Rykodisc
Subject: Copy protection on CDs


I’m a huge fan of Rykodisc, to the point of purchasing cds on the
strength of them being on the Rykodisc label. I’m also a huge fan of
Kelly Willis and I’ve just purchased her latest album only to discover
that I can’t copy it onto my computer. I assume this is intentional copy
protection, which you’ve added to the CD. I know there’s no obligation
for you to let me copy the tracks, and you have to just trust I won’t
share those files, but it’s really irritating to not be able to listen
to my latest favourite album when I’m working. MP3s are a reality, and I

don’t think you’re doing yourselves any favours by annoying those of us
who do make the effort to purchase the CDs. Also, is it my imagination,
or is the sound quality not quite as crisp as it could be?

I hope you take this as constructive criticism. I’m aware copyright is a
huge problem for the music industry at present, but surely there’s a
better way!

Best wishes,


Jemima Kingsley

—– Original Message —–
From: “Info @Rykodisc”
To: “Jemima Kingsley”
Sent: Friday, September 27, 2002 3:21 PM
Subject: RE: Copy protection on CDs

We do not currently use copy-protection on any of our releases.
Experience has shown us, however, that certain pressings of certain
releases can be difficult for a cd-rom drive to read. We do not have an
explanation for this problem, and continue to work with our
manufacturing contracter to improve this.

As for the sound quality, I am sorry that it does not sound as clear to
you as some other albums. It is possible that the mastering house we
used choosed to bring out a warmer sound than you may hear on other
releases, as they and our A&R staff felt that was more appropriate to
the album.

Thank you,

Having regained some perspective, I sent a grovelling email after this, thanking them for their time.