Trust issues with Audacity audio software

After Muse Group had acquired the popular audio recording and editing software Audacity, end of April 2021, they started to add data collection and »phone-home« features. A new Desktop Privacy Policy document now suggests the software better be not used by kids under 13 years, probably to reconcile data collection with the GDPR. The policy also permits sharing the data with law enforcement agencies; and reserves the right to share data

with our main office in Russia and our external counsel in the USA.

FOSS Post has the details.

The manner in which data collection and phone-home features were introduced, including the clauses of the Desktop Privacy Policy, has severely damaged our trust in the new owner of Audacity, and ultimately also in Audacity. Due to these concerns, tuxwise has now removed Audacity from its list of recommended software.

What can you do?

  • Versions up to, and including 3.0.2, don’t have the issues mentioned here. Don’t upgrade to 3.0.3 or beyond.
  • Since Audacity is open source, a number of projects have been forked from it that may become worthy replacements. None of them is production-ready yet, but you should keep an eye on, e.g, Tenacity.
[2021–07-29 Update] We’ve added a mention of Tenacity here.
[2021–07-22 Update] As FOSS Post reports, the Audacity developers have revised their stance and the policy – partially. We still say Nope.

Image Credits:
Papirus icon for Audacity (modified) | GNU General Public License, version 3

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