Can you resell a song you downloaded legally and have paid for? According to an American judge, you can't: the verdict calls the entire system of digital second-hand stores into question. The verdict's consequences for Europe areuncertain at the moment.
Product or license?
It all comes down to a matter of principle: is a downloaded song just a digital version of something already released on cd? In other words: can you re-sell it like you would an old cd? Or do you only buy a license, which gives you the right to listen to the music - but not to resell it.
An American judge has decided that buying digital content is the same as getting a license, meaning it can not be sold again. The judged reached his verdict in a case against ReDiGi, an online platform focussed on the sale of second-hand downloads.
According to the company, the products were handed from one person to the next, without making a copy, but the judge saw it different. The ruling torpedoes the plans of several companies that wanted to start a similar business.
The consequences of the ruling in Europe are uncertain at the time. Analysts expect that a similar case has to be held here to come to a definitive conclusion.