Yes, PGA. It’s not illegal to record streaming audio or video. And even if it was, I would not care. It’s my property. My computer. I can do what I want with it. It’s no one one’s business what I do with it.
Interviewer: What do you think about piracy on the internet? Joss Stone: I think it’s great. Interviewer: Great? Joss Stone: Yeah. I love it. I think it’s brilliant and I’ll tell you why. Music should be shared. I believe this is how music turned into some crazy business. Now, the only part about music I dislike is the business that is attached to it. Now, if music is free then there is no business. There’s just music. So, I like it [piracy]. I think people should share. It’s OK, if one person buys it. It’s totally cool. Share it with your friends, I don’t care. I don’t care how you hear it, as long as you hear it. As long as you come to my show and have a great time and listen to the live show, it’s totally cool. I don’t mind. I’m happy that they hear it. Interviewer: You’re the first singer telling this story. Joss Stone: Yeah because most people have been brainwashed.
Note waxcylinder’s careful wording. We don’t advise on how to record Spotify, (or iPlayer, or any other copyright material).
Many people want to record sounds that are playing on their computer for perfectly legal reasons and we can offer help in how to do that.
Personally, I cringe when I see questions that explicitly ask how to copy material where copying is explicitly prohibited (such as iPlayer an Spotify) and would recommend that if someone wants copies of copyright material they should buy it, but it is something of a grey area as copyright law varies from country to country. In some parts of the world it is not legal to copy music that you “own”, even for personal use, though there are ongoing arguments as to whether such laws are “legal”. In other countries it may be legal to copy anything you like (though there are ongoing wrangles about that too). What it comes down to is that we can help people to use the technology, but the user is responsible for how they use it.
The Spotify End User License Agreement states:
For the avoidance of doubt, you agree that you may not (without limitation):
copy, reproduce, “rip”, record, make available to the public or otherwise use any part of the Spotify Software Application or the Spotify Service or its content (including but not limited to tracks, images and text) in a manner not expressly permitted under this Agreement;
I’m sorry, Steve, but waxcylinder did advise on how to record Spotify. That was exactly what the questioner asked and waxcylinder gave an answer that would move the questioner towards their goal. If the elves are genuinely concerned not be encouraging illegal copying, the response should have been: “I’m sorry we cannot advise you how to record from Spotify”. And the topic should then have been locked.
My view is this: Audacity can be used to commit acts of “Piracy”. We cannot prevent such acts taking place but we should never put ourselves in a position where we could be seen as being complicit to those acts of piracy.
Waxcylinder wrote: “See this tutorial from the Manual:”
The introduction (highlighted in blue) at the top of that page clearly states: Copyright or web site restrictions may prevent you recording or distributing material. Check first.
My understanding is that when you buy ann LP ord a CD (ord a DVD or Blu-ray) you never “own” the music (or film) - you merely buy a license to play that music (or film) and normally the licensing restrictions restrict that domestic, non-paid-for, use. Many jusrisdictions, in my understanding, allow you to make a backup copy, normally a single backup copy - the license does not normally allow for making copies for use in a different media format (e.g. transferring LP to CD or digibit files for your MP3 player/iPod) - rather you are expected to buy that same material with a fresh license to play on the alternative player.
What this boils down to is that a whole lot of what Audacity is used for by many of our users lives in a very grey legal area and 'twas ever thus since the advent of the domestic tape recorder, cassette recorders and subsequently MiniDisc machines.
This is not BTW a defence of piracy, nor weasel words - merely a statement of the obvious (should you take the trouble to read the licensing fine print from the record and movie companies).
Fundamentally I agree, but sadly that is not always possible.
On YT for example there are many instances of once-commercial recordings that are no longer available to purchase, not even from online digibit sites.
The BBC radio (and TV) also broadcasts many excellent live performances which for the most part disappear into the vaults never to be heard (or seen) again, or worse still in the past the tapes got scrubbed and re-used. The same happened with many earlier television programmes. The Beeb from time to time puts out calls to amateur recordists (aka pirates) to retrieve previously broadcast material that the Beeb has “lost” - and they are truly grateful when such recordings emerge.
I am reasonably familiar with the laws of copyright, being a UK AV producer who holds Copyright Clearnce Scheme licences from the IAC in the UK. It is precisely because I do abide by the law that I take offence when others don’t.
All illegal copying is THEFT. The fact that most folks do it does not make it right - just unpoliceable!