The fight against piracy has gone through a number of the Kübler-Ross stages already: denial, anger, depression. Now, we're entering the stage of bargaining.
Two of the people involved in the genesis of the MP3 format have teamed up to launch what they hope will be its successor. The new format, dubbed 'MusicDNA', will offer listeners a searchable file containing lyrics, videos, artwork, blog posts and other information: all of which will be updated whenever a user connects to the internet.
MusicDNA is the brainchild of Norwegian developer Dagfinn Bach, who worked on the very first MP3 player back in 1993. Assisting him in the venture are a number of investors including German researcher Karlheinz Brandenburg, who is credited with inventing the MP3 format itself.
Two record labels have already signed up to use the new format with others expected to follow, although it will likely be down to the formats compatibility with existing personal music players which will decide whether this format will stand tall against Apple's very similar iTunes LP format.
Speaking at the Midem music conference, Bach said: "We can deliver a file that is extremely searchable and can carry up to 32GB of extra information in the file itself.
"And it will be dynamically updatable so that every time the user is connected, his file will be updated."
Brandenburg, now the director of the Fraunhofer Institute for Digital Media Technology in Germany, remarked: "I think it brings together a number of ideas that have been around for a long time.
"I remember 10 years ago, a lot of people were saying that we need to enrich the user experience, that legal access to music has to give the customers more than just music, and this is certainly one very nice way to do it."
Hey, does anyone remember how the Recording Industry Association of America went to court in 1998 to try and block the release of the very first personal MP3 player in the States? We don't know why that came to mind...