posted on 2006/01/11 13:01
Cory just noticed the mini Music Store, which TUAW noted yesterday.
He (and a boingboing correspondent note that the contextual display of tracks must mean that the Music Store is being sent details of what you're listening to.
It's easy (not particularly obvious, but easy) to switch off the store; it's slightly more hard, but certainly not past any sort of half-decent geek, to use ethereal or another network sniffer to confirm that when the panel is hidden, no data is sent back (see the first comment at since1968).
I also wonder why Cory is worried about Apple knowing what he listens to when he makes it public for the entire world anyway.
Frankly, I doubt Apple has enough storage space to do anything meaningful with the data. Also, if you sign out of the music store, it can't tie the data to you (except by IP). Also, using Parental Controls in the iTunes preferences, you can disable the music store (and podcasts, hurrah).
Also, if you're so bothered about iTunes, why not stop using it?
To all of you wondering why I bother posting things like this: I don't believe Apple are all good (there's way too much cross-selling in yesterday's keynote, with iLife + .Mac being nearly $200). It's that I want to head off an information cascade before it happens.
There are already five or six posts on Technorati bandying around terms like "spyware".
[ 0 days, 4 hours later ]
So much for heading off the horde: it's on slashdot.
Meanwhile, someone who can actually drive a packet sniffer app reveals that the data isn't even going to Apple, but to a stats tracking company.
Not that that's necessarily better.
It's more likely that it's just being aggregated down to the number of page views, and even less likely to be personally identifiable.
... what he said.
[ 0 days, 14 hours later ]
Macworld has an editor's notes column on the MiniStore, which in the light of a new morning makes all the right points. (Perhaps because it's less strident, more considered, and because they actually talked to Apple, it's better than since1968 or boingboing; because they're not trying to refute a kneejerk response, they're better than this spool entry.)
We hate you all. Yes, especially you. Sod off and DIE