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Makers of a Charley Pride CD, the first known copy-protected compact disc released in the United States, have agreed to warn consumers it is not compatible with computer CD-ROM drives or DVD players. The agreement settles a lawsuit filed in a Marin County court by Karen DeLise, a California woman who was upset after she discovered her new “Charley Pride — A Tribute to Jim Reeves” CD contained a copy protection scheme from Phoenix-based SunnComm Inc. that prevented the disc from being played in her PC. The technology deters consumers from swapping music over the Internet or making unlimited personal copies of a CD for car stereos or portable MP3 music players. DeLise sued SunnComm and the record’s distributors, independent record label Music City Records and Fahrenheit Entertainment, in September, claiming they failed to put an adequate disclaimer on the CD’s package. As part of the settlement, reached Friday, the CD’s makers will provide a more detailed disclosure in the packaging. They will also stop requiring consumers to enter their names and e-mail addresses as a condition of downloading the music from a Web site, which DeLise’s attorney, Ira Rothken, contends was a way for the record labels to track listener habits. “This sets an excellent example for the record industry to follow in adopting digital management schemes in the future while preserving consumer privacy,” Rothken said. The settlement does not apply to other secure CDs. Various record labels, including Universal, Warner, EMI, BMG and Sony, are exploring technologies that will limit the digital duplication of CDs. Most copy-protected releases have been secret, with no disclosure to buyers. Executives at SunnComm, one of several providers of so-called digital rights management technology, said they thought they had disclosed enough already by including a label that stated the Charley Pride CD was “designed to play in standard audio CD players only.” “It was the first time out of the box for anybody to do this. There wasn’t a format for anybody to go by and we did the best we could,” said Bill Whitmore, SunnComm’s chief operating officer. “But we were willing to settle the suit to communicate with the consumers.” Representatives of Music City Records and Fahrenheit Entertainment did not immediately return phone calls for comment. Copyright 2002 Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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