New York (NY) – Music publisher Sony BMG this afternoon announced it is commencing a mail-in exchange program for customers who have purchased Sony BMG CDs containing XCP copy protection software, discovered recently to use stealth to prevent its removal from Windows PCs by normal means. Apparently, retailers will not be involved in the exchange program, which had previously been described as a “recall.”
Customers who own any of 52 CDs from an updated list of XCP-endowed titles may mail their CDs – apparently in their original packages, though instructions did not state so explicitly – to an address supplied by Sony BMG’s Web site. The UPC code on the CD package must match that provided by the Web site. Customers will not be charged for shipping and handling of replacement CDs.
In the meantime, Sony BMG will make available to registered customers MP3 files of the complete contents of their replaced CDs, so they won’t be without their music in the interim. The company did not state the bitrate of the MP3 files, though it’s possible that these are 192 kbps “CD quality” files.
Although the company did update its Web site to address the exchange program and other XCP-related issues, the promised revised uninstallation utility has yet to be seen.