Audacity: are we already spyware?

Audacity: are we already spyware?

According to an updated Privacy Policy, the preased that Audacity was actual for spyware. Concretely appeared on the audio editor’s website a few days ago, which information about users the software is to collect and how they were processed.

The allegations of users can be seen against the background of the last developments of the project: Audacity appeared for a long time as a free software and was one of the most popular audio editors. In May 2021, however, the Muse Group took over the application and causes a user with Google Analytics and developers with the forced to a contributor License Agreement.

Personal data for a better app

Quickly stood the accusation of the commercialization of the project in the room. With the new privacy policy, Audacity now takes some rights: among other things, the software may collect information about the operating system, the IP address, the computer and error messages. In any case, this is personal data in the sense of the DSGVO.

Furthermore, Audicity may collect all the data that would be administered. They are necessary to enforce the legal interests of the provider, while all other information should ensure the correct functioning of the application. All data wants to save audacity in Europe and forward as needed to other countries like the US and Russia.

Audacity is not intended for persons under the age of 13. If you are young, please do not use the application. This is the lowest age level, which provides the DSGVO for the consent to the processing of personal data.

New guidelines against the community

However, on several foresis pages, the new guidelines initiate rejection on the part of the users: both on Reddit and Github estimated users as unacceptable and pounded a fork of the audio editor. Such without the changes of the last few months already exists – however, the simple access is missing via the full-time package managers of Linux distributions, even Windows and MacOS users have to compile the application even.

After the significant criticism of the user, the project tried to deception on GitHub some of the concerns: Data were not shared with third parties or sold to them, the information from error messages had to releases users only optionally, IP addresses were stored only 24 hours and also the new guideline did not affect the offline use of audacity.

However, the coarse part of the users also declined this explanation: after the use of Google Analytics and forced to the CLA, for many the confidence in the developers was. Also that such wradies and changes for the community from nothing appeared and only a declaration was published, was not helpful.

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