The Daily Roxette

Roxette World Tour 2011 schedule

“The Ballad Hits” CD to be copy-protected

Written by pietROxette on October 21, 2002 to .

UPDATED - Marie Fredriksson’s voice has been praised for its power and range. But can it crash a computer?

  In Sweden, the answer is “kanske.”

  In a record-company effort to thwart the increasingly common practice of making duplicates of CDs, EMI/Capitol Records will implement copy-protection technology on Roxette’s forthcoming release, “The Ballad Hits.” This is part of a program wherein all new releases from the label will contain this protection scheme.

  But fans may find out that not only is it difficult to make copies or download songs onto the Internet, the discs may not even play in their computers.

  In fact, users who disregarded warnings on some of the copy-protected CDs released already – to avoid putting the copy-protected discs in their computers – were faced with costly repairs. Apple has posted a warning on its Web site that some CDs can wreak havoc with its Macs. And some of these new-generation CDs will not play on car systems.

  Dutch consumer electronics giant Philips, co-creator of the CD-format, has balked at this concept and a class-action lawsuit was filed in California against the major record companies over these new-generation CDs.

UPDATE: A spokesperson at EMI, commenting on the technology they are going to use, tells TDR that the CD will definitely play on computers, car CD-players, and DVD players. However, you cannot digitally extract data from it. That is, you cannot make copies of the disc or create MP3 files of it.

Record companies, in general, say they have to use such technological advances as copy-protection because illegal CD duplication is crippling their industry.

  Piracy is exploding, with the volume of illegally copied CDs rising nearly 50% in 2001. Estimates from the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, a trade group, suggest that 40% of all CDs and cassettes sold worldwide last year were pirated copies – about 950 million units. The problem is especially pervasive outside the United States.

  Sony, one of the other labels involved, is sympathetic to fans – to a point. Read and heed warning stickers, they say. The companies are stickering CDs that are copy-protected.

  Sony Music Europe has taken the lead in aggressively fighting piracy. Since last fall, the label has shipped more than 11 million copy-protected discs in that continent. American pressings of some of those same CDs are not encoded.

  Sony says it’s currently working on a version of copy encoding, called “Second Session,” that will allow listeners to play their CDs on all computers.

  But it’s not only computer users who may be affected. The encoding theoretically can cause problems with car stereos since the non-skip circuitry of car CD players is similar to the CD-read devices in computers. In addition, these copy-protected discs might also be unplayable on DVD players. Some portable devices, like Discmans, are also affected.

   Even if the discs work as promised, some feel the inability to make a copy for personal use – described as “fair use” by the U.S. government years ago when referring to cassettes – is a violation of consumer trust.

  There’s also no clear verdict on whether copy-protecting is even worth the hassle. Major artists such as David Bowie and Eminem, for instance, insisted that their newest releases hit the market without copy-protection.

Other articles with the same topic


I hope that they don’t do that in the CD.. because I couldn’t play some of them (the **protected** ones) on my two_years_old JVC CD player... I don’t think that this stops people of making copies.. it just makes some people not to buy that kind of CDs... like me.. because if I know that it won’t work on my CD player.. why should I buy it??

Have a nice day!,

I can’t drive without Roxette. I can’t design websites/print jobs without Roxette. No kiddin’

So this means that if I buy this CD then the ONLY way I could hear it is my CD player. Am I supposed to carry that CD player everywhere I go!?

I have a question.... This move is surely going to effect CD sales, can anyone please tell me if the effect would be positive or negative??

I doubt that I will buy the CD since I don’t play CDs in my CD player so it is more like useless to me.



Hmmm... interesting...

The day I cannot play a cd through the 5.1 speaker system attached to my PC is the day I stop buying Roxette CDs.

I want to play fair and support Roxette whenever possible, but if they decide to make matters difficult then I will simply stop buying.

Negative, one of the first artists who suffered this was Natalie Imbruglia, lots of people went back to the shops to get the money back because their CD didn’t work...
Having in mind that it’s a Greatest Hits album I think this is not very clever, because most of the tracks are on the net already... so, for non fans if the CD is not working properly it’s easier just to download... and cheaper.

CDON usually writes (will not play on computer) when the disc is protected, and they haven’t done that with ballad hits...

i don´t think this is the way to fight against mp3s actually. Many ppl use their PC as hifi, this meaning that they don´t own a hifi, so not being able to pay the CD anywhere, what is the last option? Downloading the mp3s and making a cd-r out of it.... oh well..

This is a bloody SHAME!!!!
They don’t want people to copy their product, but is is allowed to make a copy for yourself. With the ’copy-protection’ they take away that right, but okay, I can imagine that protection is more important.
But they should not make it impossible to play the original CD in every player!!! It is just not right to do so!!

but maybe EMI has a better protection so you can play it but not copy it...

I think I got my answers....Baaaaaaaaaaaddddddd mooooooveeeeeeee!!!!!!!!!!!!


I know people who bought Marie’s DVD without having a DVD player!!! :DDDD

¡¡MARTA!! ¿¿Estás por aquí?? :)

Oh dear, oh dear.
Looks like i’ll be another non buyer. :(
I don’t work right now, so I was going to have to borrow the money. But if I can’t play it, not worth me bothering.
With record shops here, once the CD has been opened, they won’t take it back. So, it’s not like I can even try to see if it works!

My CD player is dead, so I would have to play it on my DVD player until I can replace it(That’s even if it’ll work on a new system!)... but will it be worth trying it out!?

I used to just buy the stuff for the hell of it, as it was Roxette... but now I buy if I can afford.
So this looks like one off my list. :(

I have also the whole “Vapen Och Ammunition” by Kent that it’s copy protected... so maybe it doesn’t work right. Anyway Kent works for BMG I think, not EMI...

I bought once “razorblade romances” from h.i.m.
later I read that it was the very first copy protected cd. but I could copy it with cdclone with no problem at all. just made a copy to find if it would work. it’s a shame that this cds won’t work in some cars and some computers. it’s cheating on the fans. and in the end, some ppl will always be able to rip the songs. and as santi already said, since it’s a best of cd, most songs are already available in the different p2p networks. and one should think why eminem absolutely fighted for a normal cd release without copy protection. I am not eminem fan at all, but what did he lose? he was #1 almost everywhere. same thing with alanis morissette that even supported napster. I guess with such copy protected cds you only lose fans. and ppl that don’t wanna pay for cds will always find a way to get what they want for free. and I bet that the whole album will be released as mp3 and then everyone can burn a normal copy without any protection...

You know...I was really looking forward to this compilation. But now after reading about this “copy protection” issue, I am considering not even buying it. I was even considering buying additional copies for friends and family for this holiday season. But now? I don’t think so. Looks like you lost a few more sales EMI.

I’m from the USA. If I order it online and it won’t play in my computer or my car CD player, what do I do? Do I return it? Does take returns? Ha! I’m screwed! And this pisses me off!!!

What about making my own Roxette personal compilations? So, I can’t do that with this new CD? Then there would really be no point in my buying it then - perhaps just to look at the nice cover. I think I’ll just print a copy instead.

Whenever I hear about such things, in all honesty, I’m only discouraged to buy more CDs. It’s just like the dead singles market here in the USA. It’s only discouraged me to go to the record stores and buy new CDs, simply because I cannot buy what I want - what I came for. And these copy-protected ideas only further discourage me to buy more CDs. In turn, I have been buying fewer and fewer CDs. Wake up record companies!!! You are only discouraging people to buy your records! Instead, they will happily go download them for free. Then they wonder why sales have declined.

Maybe I’ll just skip buying this compilation now and find the Mp3s of the new songs online. I hate giving in to record company greediness. The fans suffer in the end. Then again, I do live in the USA. Go figure!

I have no reason to buy this CD now. I have only 2 places to really play this. In one of the 3 trays in my computer (CDRom, DVDRom, CD-R) or my Disc player that’s portable. THANK YOU EMI FOR SCREWING ME OVER ONCE AGAIN!!!! Your first shot was when EMI-USA went belly up. This will be #2. Much appreciated. This is why you’ve lost MOST of my business. You’re about to lose ALL of it now.

Well hasn’t his one caused a stir! I too have many copied disc from supposedly copy protectedCD’s there will always be ways and means. I have a DVD home system thing that is our Stereo too. Whats the point in buying this disc? It aint gonna work on anything I got, PC, DVD,Car. HMMM Roxette, did you agree to this? Well if so, agree to disagree and change otherwise we will be waiting for those copies to end up on some pirate site or WINMX.

Could someone tell me how you even go about copying something that won’t read in a CD-ROM drive??? I’ve had experience with copy protected cds and now I just don’t bother buying them because they won’t even play in my car cd player.( its over 3 years old....but why should I replace it if it works!)

If EMI thinks that this will help them to stop losing money then they are seriously I’ve just read 15-20 comments of ppls who aren’t going to buy it because they can’t play it.

Now I used to be the sort of person who.....had a Rox cd before I had a cd player......had a Rox MD before I had a mini disc.....had the Marie DVD before I had a dvd player......but I’m not going out to buy a new cd player simply because it won’t play a certain plays all my other cds and so does my PC.

Thanx EMI for choosing what I listen to .....coz at the end of the day thats what it boils down to! By them placing a copy protection on that cd it means I can’t listen to it. (unless someone copies it for me ;) )

The record companies should be pourng their money into stopping bootleggers by making cds cheaper to buy!! and not making ppls choices more limited.

Let me set the record straight.... i love Roxette and have supported them financially by buying their records since Look Sharp! And last year when i heard that Roxette was joining the ranks of artisits against piracy I was kinda upset. First, their albums are not widely available in N. A and here in Canada their last release was priced at over 20 dollars... thats okay for such a cool band but the pop queen’s albums were selling for around 13 dollars. I understand that Marie and Per put their energy into their art and that in a way piracy i is stealing, but what is more important ? Making their fans happy (like me who owns an imac and will not be able to use this at home and possibly on my crappy car cd player) or perhaps making a few more thousand dollars knowing that they have 4 protected songs ( as the others including ATAY are all over the net) and pissing off fans all around the world who are beginning to choose not to purchase their up coming release. Stealing MP3s is no different that taping off the radio. Roxette and mainly EMI need to realise that this cd is not really to drum up new sales, but rather a treat for their die hard fans that are waiting for the 6 new songs as most of us already have the other songs. I thought Europe’s recording companies were not the bloated, egotistical, controlling companies that they are in the USA.

I wouldn’t be surprised if all the new songs appear on the net after the albums release. Time and time again artists who have protected cds seem to be exploited more than those who are not against file sharing. For example, Metallica is still very easy to dl because of the big stink they made with Napster and Eminem’s latest cd ( all songs) was on the net days before its officual release. Eminem then so maturely proclaimed that he was going to kill the “#@$%er” who did this. EMI is now tempting the fates......

Per, Marie and EMI: I was waiting for this cd for weeks and now it looks as though I will not be buying it. I cannot risk a pricy repair bill on my computer to financially support my favourite band. Perhaps when the pop hits come out EMI will have had a change of heart.....but i still love you, Per and Marie!!!!!!

deeply upset and cd-less in Edmonton, Canada

ps. if Roxette had no power about EMI’s decision I deeply regret implementing them......they’re my favourite band....forever :)

Everything that could be played (doesn’t matter on what) - could be copied, and it just affects how much effor you have to put into it, so the only chance to avoid copying - stop playing ;)

In this case, I think, marginal revenue of introducing copy-protection mechanism, could be even negative

If you have Windows XP you’ll be able to listen to the cd on your PC. I havent had problems with Shakira or Aerosmith’s GH. So, bleh..... Cheers

@ Vixter: your computer doesn’t need to be able play the cd to make a copy. cdclone is really a great little proggie... and sometimes this cds works on my cd drive even though they write on the cover it won’t work in the pc.

C’mon, every copy protected system can be altered. And the worst thing that can happen to your PC is a system reboot trying to play the CD.

Record shops MUST refund if you can prove the CD doesn’t work for you!

EMI and the music business are nevertheless STUPID, a ’copy-protected’ label on the cover of a CD only scares potential buyers, music sales will go down again, and piracy will be encouraged!

BTW, I have the right to make copies, one for my car, one for my HiFi, and one for my PC (MP3). The original CDs stays well preserved in my closet! And I do not want to clean it out! If I had lots of money, I would make a lawsuit out of it, I bet I win, EMI loses AGAIN!

@Matts - where do I get cdclone from??? is it downloadable??

@carbon - I’ve got XP but I still find it imposible to read these type of cds :(

Cool... in Amazon Germany is 16 €!!! :P
But have you realised in the tracklisting Every Day and See me are missing??!! :O

The biggest problem isn’t that you can’t play it on computers, although this is major too, but that the sound itself may be compromised. See this link:
Plus the horrible label “DOES NOT PLAY ON PC/MAC” that ruins the sleeves. I hate this idea.

@pietROxette: as I said earlier - if you can play, you can copy. Sound goes through your computer’s sound card, which could easily record into wav’s (the same way as they’re stored in Audio CD) - long time ago I used program ’Total Recorder’ for similar things, and then you can convert them to MP3’s if you wish.

Yet I don’t think it would be a problem to rip CDs digitally - I think that it’s question whether software pays attention to copyright bytes on CD or not. If it ignores copyright protection - it will copy the data. Have software which ignores copyrights, that’s all.

Yes, an analogue copy is possible. However, that decreases sound quality.

So then, have an old software, which doesn’t know about “copyright thing” ;)

I don’t think there will be much loss in analogue copy, since bytes are caught at the sound card, and the biggest loss is when sound travels through wires to headphones or other audio-output devices... How much do we lose when sound travels in analogue way from computer CD player to sound card - well, we’ll see ;)

If the computer can play this CD then it is a sinch to record it. I guess “Windows Sound Recorder” was made for such days ;)


Here’s my first encounter with a copy-protected CD: Natalie Imbruglia’s latest album.
First off, it DIDN’T say anything about protetion on it!!! I figuered that out only when my CD-ROM refused to recognize it as Audio Disk.
Second - I really couldn’t copy it (but didn’t try long:) [The CD-info of “EasyCDCreator 4” said it was 800MB big (while it wasn’t fully recorded).]
Still, it was “playable” on the PC - a very ugly WinAmp-like player appeared with the insertion of the CD. BUT: the songs were named as “Track 1, Track 2, etc” (!!??!) and of course there’s no way to rename them!
Last but absolutely not least - the PC-playabe part turned out to be just BAD mp3 compression, compared to AudioCD quality!!
What’s more - after a short search on WinMx I found several users having eiher the album track by track, or as one track,... with various bitrates.....

I agree: LOWER THE PRICES OF CD’s!!! That’s the key!
C’mon, a CD is MUCH cheaper (and faster) than an MC to make. The blank CD’s themselves are 2-3 times cheaper than cassettes. BUT the MC’s are sold 3-4 times cheaper!

P.S. I also use my PC as a HiFi. As many of my firends that have PC’s.

I was being doubtful whether to buy the Ballads-CD as I’d be ’forced’ to order the non-EP-edition [with 2 songs missing]... And if I won’t be able to even listen to it... if I buy it that will be only cos I’m a fan (as if Per & Marie needed my money haha :).

Please Roxette !!!, Please EMI !!!
Don´t do that

I don´t have a CD player.
I only have a Computer, I play my CDs on it.

If you did that, I wouldnt buy the CD.

And this kind of CD don´t stop piracy, such as the last Celine Dion CD is copy protected and you can find it on the net and download it.

this kind of CD doesn´t function, they don´t stop piracy and they make fans to not listen (and buy) the CD

Don’t be afraid, I’m sure there will be a possibility to copy the CD anyway. There’s no copy protection that was not cracked yet.

These new inventions are just a new job for hackers I think. Don’t worry! Give Russians time & story of DVD will have a continuation.

You’ll be able to listen to such CD’s on your mp3-players or whatever...

There is nothing in the world that cannot be broken.
The question of Copy-right should be a question of morality but not of technology.

I will never let myself buy new bootleg record! But I must have right to listen to it on my computer, because I always work with it!!!

The article was just updated recently with this information:

“UPDATE: A spokesperson at EMI, commenting on the technology they are going to use, tells TDR that the CD will definitely play on computers, car CD-players, and DVD players. However, you cannot digitally extract data from it. That is, you cannot make copies of the disc or create MP3 files of it.”

This is good news...BUT, what if I want to make my own compilation with these new songs? I guess I’ll be sending my CD to my friend to copy them with his computer software. It doesn’t seem to affect the quality that much - since he’s ripped DVD audio to MP3 files for me (Madonna’s ’Drowned World’ DVD - which sounds awesome on my CD player!).

Sorry EMI. Your plan doesn’t work. As you can see, people know ways around this. I guess this copy-protection idea was meant to fail. Maybe it’s time to lower CD prices - or think of new ideas.

To whoever the anonymous ppls were who posted about capturing the cd via a cd player on to a hard drive.......

Well the point is........some ppls don’t actualy have a cd player to actualy be able to do myself.....I play cds thru my PC and my pc alone as I’ don’t have a cd player in my room......and I’m certainley not ging to move the stacking system up here just for that! I’m also not going to be buying meters of cable to connect them together as this would then add to the price of the cd I’ve just brought.

I’ll sit and wait for the cd and see what happens.

i hope none of us buys this cd. as long it’s copy proteced, of course. i hope this cd flopps, sorry marie and per. emi must learn that they can’t take away the rights of the buyers. i think the cds are expensive enough to demand a cd conform to the standard.


Get the latest articles to your mailbox, subscribe to The Daily Roxette newsletter.

Enter your email address:

Delivered by