The Beginner’s Guide to Audacity Spyware Scandal
Have you been stumbling upon the words “Audacity Spyware” more than often on all your social media timelines? You are not alone! Here are the ABCs of the Audacity software and its recent scandal. On the flip side, if you’re someone who has no clue what this whole technical drama is, welcome to the tech world! Team Podlab has decided to break down this whole scenario for the benefit of both, tech-savvy as well tech-dummy.
Audacity: The Digital Audio Editor
Started in the fall of 1999 by Dominic Mazzoni and Roger Dannenberg, Audacity was initially released on May 28, 2000. Hence, the first version released was 0.8. Since then this recording application software and free open-source audio editor have been available for Windows, macOS, Linux, and other Unix-based OS.
Not only free and open-source but Audacity is also a cross-platform multi-track audio editor and recorder. It can record live audio through a microphone/ mixer and or digitize recordings from cassettes or minidiscs. Further, it can also import sound files, edit them, and combine them with other files or new recordings. Hence, after performing the needed operation using this audio software, one can finally export the recordings in many different file formats, including multiple other files at one go.
Audacity was the most downloaded software in Fosshub as of April 2021 followed by the announcement of its acquisition; The Muse Group announced to acquire its trademark and further contribute to the development of the software. For those of you who don’t know, the Muse Group consists of the owners of MuseScore and Ultimate Guitar.
To know more about Audacity and its features/ benefits in-depth which led to its popularity, read through this blog post: Overview of Audacity.
Additionally, they have also stated that they might share the information gathered with anyone they feel the disclosure is necessary.
Hence, all these policy changes only led to angry responses from users on various social media platforms. Users were calling to fork Audacity as soon as possible. However, due to the increased social media disturbance from its wide, user base, Audacity did release an update as quick as a flash. It stated that:
Although there has been a little silence from the general public following this update, users are still unsure; unsure of whether or not to use this software in the future.
For podcasters & other users who are still on the edge about using Audacity despite Daniel Ray’s Clarification:
However, here are few tips for everyone who has completely lost faith in the betterment of the Audacity software:
- Spin-Off Forks: Users can also exploit the open-source nature of Audacity by spinning off forks of the software. This means cutting out the unimportant data collection by keeping one’s Audacity data private.
- Firewall: The last option is to use a firewall to block audacity from accessing the internet. Here are some links you can refer to on how to do this based on the type of your device –
Windows: How to block an application from accessing the internet.
Mac: Blocking connections to your Mac with a firewall.
Apart from these three options, all we can do is wait to figure out if the Muse group is contributing to the betterment of the software in the future as promised during acquisition, or if Audacity is just going to be another software that will disappear into oblivion as a result of such poor privacy updates that have scared-off many of its users.