NewsForge: Thomson Multimedia says ‘MP3 has never been free’

“Dave Arland, a U.S. spokesman for Thomson Multimedia, says that
MP3 licensing terms have not changed in seven years, and that as
far as he knows there are no plans to change them in the future.
According to Arland, the Slashdot poster who claimed Thomson’s
license structure changed recently ‘was apparently

“The controversy was created by the removal of this line in the
old MP3 royalty licensing page (courtesy of Internet Wayback
Machine) from the current version: ‘No license fee is expected for
desktop software mp3 decoders/players that are distributed
free-of-charge via the Internet for personal use of end-users.’

“But the lack of these few words on the latest version of the
MP3 licensing Web site does not represent a change in Thomson’s

“Arland says Ogg Vorbis is apparently using this small Web site
wording change ‘to get publicity,’ and that if Ogg Vorbis or anyone
else wants to produce multimedia encoders and players and give them
away, that’s fine with Thomson…”


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