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Posted By : PHS - 10/23/2010 10:58 AM
My partner and I are developing a online sheet music publishing company. Is it possible for potential customers to be able to view and hear the score without using Finale produts? If so, is there a way to prevent the works from being printed and the audio being saved?

Posted By : Dr. Wiggy - 10/23/2010 12:35 PM
In a word: No.

If someone can play the audio on their computer, then they can save the audio as a file.

At the very least, they could send the audio output from their computer to a recording device, and then play it back into the computer. (This is often known as the "analog gap", and is most commonly seen when people burn disks of protected audio files, and then rip the disk back to their computer.)

Using secured PDFs is pointless, as software exists to remove the security settings on Adobe PDFs, which normally prevent editing, copying and printing of PDFs. A quick Google brings up several different packages to remove PDF security on Mac, Windows and Linux.

Generally, you can't show people stuff and then limit what they do with it. You can use watermarks to 'spoil' the image, or only offer crappy low-res versions until they have paid. But even once your customers have paid, you can't stop them passing on the file to friends.

Even if you had your own software on the client's machine, which was the only way of viewing and printing the music, then once they've paid to print it, they can send the data to a print spooler, and convert to a PDF and distribute it.

There are Flash-based methods of showing graphics on websites without making them available as images, so the reader can't just right-click and Download.
There are plenty of websites that have pages from books that you can flick through, but the images cannot be downloaded easily. Find one, and see what technology they use.
Try to copy the pages! There are stories about people who manage to request all the images sequentially and automate the collation into one document, of course.
And you still can't stop someone from doing a screengrab -- though obviously the image won't be great.

There is a viewing and playing web plug-in for MusicXML files:
But, as I say, you can't stop someone from downloading the files and manipulating them.

Finale 2011a, 2009c, 2Ghz iMac; 2Ghz MacBook, 10.6.4
Edirol FA-66; M-Audio Oxygen 61; Yamaha PSR-410
Ancient Groove Music

Posted By : Michael Good - Today 1:13 AM

Legato Media has developed software for online sheet music publishing sales that works especially well with files created with Finale and then exported to MusicXML:

It requires Flash on the user's computer, but not any Finale products.

Michael Good
Recordare LLC