Northland offers free music download program
If getting free stuff is music to your ears, the Northland Public Library has some noteworthy news for you.
The library now is offering Freegal — a service that enables anyone with a library card to download up to three MP3 songs per week onto a computer or mobile device for free. The service became available county-wide through area libraries last month.
“As word gets out, we expect it to be wildly popular,” said Karen Shah, an adult-services librarian at Northland.
Jim Windsheimer, 55, of McCandless, was happy to hear that Northland is offering Freegal. He has almost 7,000 songs crammed onto his iPod MP3 player and always is looking for more.
“The songs are easy to download, and there's a great selection — some oldies, Elvis Presley, Bruce Springsteen, some good Christian music. I wish there was more classic rock, though,” he said. “But overall, I think it's pretty neat.”
Freegal — which gets its name from combining the words “free” and “legal” — offers music and music videos to users through a website interface with no software to install. All the music is from the Sony music catalog, which has music from more than 28,000 labels.
“There are literally millions of songs available,” said Sarah Beasley, coordinator for e-resources at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, which secured the funding for local libraries to offer the service.
There also are 5,000 music videos available.
To access Freegal, users can log onto www.northlandlibrary.org, click on “E-Resources,” and then click on “Music.” Once a selection is made, the site will prompt users for their library card number. Each song counts as one download; music videos count as two. The counter is reset every Monday at 12:01 a.m.
No downloads have any digital-rights-management restrictions, so patrons can transfer songs and music videos from one device to another. And they can keep the songs forever, said Shah, of Ross Township.
“In the first 20 days, approximately 500 library card holders (from participating Allegheny County libraries) downloaded more than 3,000 songs and music videos,” said Beasley, a resident of Pittsburgh's Highland Park neighborhood.
Beasley said the Carnegie Library is paying for the service through state funding and money from the Allegheny Regional Asset District.
Future plans include arranging for local libraries such as Northland to offer Hoopla — another service that partners with libraries to offer thousands of movies and television shows for patrons to download for free.
“Libraries are changing the ways in which they provide services,” Shah said.
“Once people have a library card, it doesn't matter where they are in the country or world; they can still access their local library services — whether it be Freegal, e-books, or something else — as long as they have Wi-Fi. Library cards are becoming a much more valuable resource.”
Laurie Rees is a contributing writer for Trib Total Media.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Photo Gallery: ‘Mission ...’ program at Northland Public Library
- School planetariums continue to educate, amaze students
- Aquinas Academy program highlights 20th-century writer
- Young McCandless actor has roles in 2 upcoming movies
- Hampton seeks input on off-road vehicle rules
- Win or lose, North Hills No. 1 fan bleeds red and white
- Presentations set to help victims, families of domestic violence
- Hampton to host Allegheny Valley Band Festival
- Former German leader discusses ISIS with North Hills, North Allegheny students
- Breakfast to benefit memorial fund for Bakerstown UMC men’s group founder