Pixel Envy

Written by Nick Heer.

Audacity’s New Privacy Policy Does Not Make It ‘Spyware’ Any More Than Any Other Application

An un-bylined FOSS Post, uh, post headlined “Audacity is now a Possible Spyware, Remove it ASAP”:

The famous open source audio manipulation program was acquired by a company named Muse Group two months ago. The same company owns other projects in its portfolio such as Ultimate Guitar (Famous website for Guitar enthuisasts) and MuseScore (Open source music notation software).

Ever since, Audacity has been a heated topic.

The parent company is a multi-national company and it has been trying to start a data-collection mechanism in the software. While Audacity is nothing more than a desktop program, its developers want to make it phone home with various data taken from users’ machines.

Shoshana Wodinsky, Gizmodo:

Ever since Audacity was acquired by tech conglomerate Muse Group in late April, fans of the free-to-use audio tool have been raising hell about some of the changes made to the software. First came plans to add telemetry capture. Then came a new contributor license agreement. Then last week came a privacy policy update that some Audacity die-hards say turns the software into “spyware.” But Audacity isn’t “spyware” — if only because virtually every app we use is some form of spyware these days.

[…]

Also worth mentioning here is that some of the other products under the Muse Group umbrella — like the music notation software MuseScore — feature nearly identical privacy policies, which suggests the parent company just updated Audacity’s policies for some consistency across its catalog. But that doesn’t excuse the piss-poor wording on its original draft, which Ray swears will be “revised” soon enough.

A website for free software enthusiasts is casually throwing around loaded terms like “spyware” for commonplace software features? Blow me over.