BT Beats: User freedom and artistic freedom go hand in hand
Today, the Free Software Foundation Europe's UK team calls on BT to not forget free software users when launching its upcoming service, and to build the system using web standards like HTML5 and CSS3, rather than proprietary and invasive software such as Flash.
Free Software users are unable to enjoy many current music services systems such as Spotify and iTunes, because they are not compatible with Free Software, or require the waiving of users' rights and freedoms in order to use them. By using web standards, BT Beats would enable all users of all operating systems to access its service without giving up their individual control of their computers.
Support for free formats is becoming increasingly popular with musicians and music lovers alike. Services such as Bandcamp.com where artists can sell their music without the need for a record label, make all music available in both Ogg Vorbis and FLAC formats. Earlier this year, "The King of Limbs," the latest album from Radiohead, was made available in DRM-free WAV format, and They Might Be Giants are offering their next album, "Join Us" in the lossless FLAC format. Previously, Nine Inch Nails released their album "The Slip" in FLAC from their own website.
We hope BT Beats listens to FSFE's letter, and joins this trend of publishing music in free formats usable with free software.