Review of Magnatune Store

Greg Meyer greg at
Sat Nov 4 18:38:54 UTC 2006

After using the Magnatune store and talking to a few people in irc, I thought 
it might make some sense to summarize the observations I have made, as well 
as their comments and suggestions, for further discussion.  I don't want to 
enter these all in bugzilla if others don't think them worthwile, so comments 
are welcome.

(1) If a download is stopped for some reason, there is no way to restart it 
within Amarok.  Perhaps Amarok crashed or you needed to stop for some other 
reason. To continue the download, you have to go to the link provided in the 
confirmation e-mail with a web browser.  It would be nice to just resume from 
within Amarok.

(2) Someone in the channel also reported that Amarok crashed when the stop 
button was pressed next to the status meter.  I could not reproduce this and 
he was a Gentoo user with pretty aggressive optimizations, which may be the 
problem, but if this can be reproduced by anybody else, I'll file a bug.

(3) Amarok doesn't know about albums I have already purchased.  It would be 
nice if Amarok kept track of albums that I have purchased, that the buy 
button could become a re-download button, or maybe just offer to re-download 
if I attempt to buy it again.

(4) If show info is disabled in the Magnatune collection browser, this does 
not stick when Amarok is re-started.

(5) I think we need to be able to access and display the artist information 
available from the Magnatune website while previewing.  This obviously is 
synonymous with the artist tab in the context browser where data is retrieved 
from wikipedia when local music is played.  It would be nice, but I'm not 
sure how feasible, for artist info in the context browser to come from 
Magnatune instead of wikipedia if the local track was purchased from 
Magnatune, since many of the Magnatune artists don't have wikipedia pages.  
Maybe the better solution is for magnatune to just make sure each artist in 
the stable gets a wikipedia page.

(6) It is my opinion that more information about how the transaction will be 
completed, i.e secure connection, you will receive an e-mail with 
instructions, etc. before the program asks for credit card information.  
Also, to make the transaction more secure, Magnatune should consider 
requiring the 3 digit security code on the back of most cards (I am pretty 
certain all Mastercard and VISA have this now).  In addition to making the 
transaction more secure from a customer service point of view, I believe the 
banks offer lower processing rates when this code is used because there are 
fewer fraudulent transactions, and therefore less cost for them.  This might 
make it less scary for people buying for the first time.

(7) Album art cannot be easily retrieved.  I purchased the album Egg by a band 
called Zilla.  To try and re-create the crash described in (2), I aborted the 
download within Amarok.  To finish downloading the album, I used the link 
provided in the confirmation e-mail and downloaded the flac zip file.  There 
was no album art included in the zip file.  So I don't know if that downloads 
automatically if the download is completed within Amarok.  If it does, great, 
but obviously the Amazon lookup does not work for these artists and if I want 
to have album art show in the context browser for purchased tracks, I must go 
to the magnatune site and download it manually.

Anyway, I know some of these are nit-picky, and if you made it this far I 
salute you, but I think they would contribute some overall polish.

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