The joy that Apple decided to sell DRM free music on their popular iTunes platform was soon overshadowed by two information that came to light shortly thereafter. The first one was that DRM free songs would cost $0.30 more which can't not really be explained unless the company or rights holders believe that they need to be compensated for an increase in trading and therefore loss in profit. The second was discovered after users were actually able to purchase drm free songs at iTunes.
Account information, namely name of buyer and account name, remained as information in the DRM free files. While this should not be a problem for most users, some would have at least preferred to receive information about this before making the purchase.
This can be especially troublesome if one or multiple of your files make their way on to the Internet, either by accident, hacks, or stolen devices. Imagine having your iPod stolen that contains your DRM free music collection, only to find out days later that the thief uploaded part or all of the music to the Internet.
I did find a great way to remove the information right in iTunes. All that needs to be done is convert the song(s) once which will remove the personal information. Please note that you only have to change the preferences (steps 1-5) once. Start at step 6 if you have changed them before. Here are the details:
- Click on Edit > Preferences
- Select General > Import Settings from the page.
- Change the setting "Import Using" to AAC Encoder if that is not automatically selected.
- Select Custom for Setting
- Now select 256 Kbps Stereo Bitrate from the menu
Select a song (or songs), right-click it (them) and choose Create AAC version. A second song should appear after some seconds, right click that song and verify that it contains no personal information at all. (by right-clicking the song and select Get Info).