End of Ctrax music service affects about 1,300 UC Davis students

The company that owns Ctrax, a legal music download service for college students, is ending the service April 30 because of "moderate interest" from students and changing company priorities. About 1,300 students have used Ctrax at UC Davis.

Last fall, the university signed a one-year agreement with Cdigix Inc. to give UC Davis students free access to music through Ctrax. The goal is to encourage students to buy and obtain copyrighted music legally, not through illegal file-sharing.

But Cdigix is ending the Ctrax free-subscription digital music service at the end of next month. Its online service for buying music ended Feb. 20.

"We've worked hard to bring legal music services to students, but with so many industry-imposed restrictions, the experience is not ultimately acceptable to them," said Cdigix Inc. Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Larry Jacobson in a statement. "Today's college students have grown up during the rise of illegal peer-to-peer services, and now there is an expectation that music should be free, that it should be available on multiple platforms, and that it should be easily transferred to their preferred portable device, including the iPod.

"These Internet-savvy consumers do not care for excessive rules being placed around the content they want," he said, "and until their needs have been addressed, the challenges of mass adoption will continue for a great many businesses."

UC Davis continues to promote legal file-sharing and respect for the creative property of media artists. Find a list of legal sites here.

Ctrax users who bought permanent downloads can keep using them after April. Student access to songs that were downloaded as part of the subscription service will expire 30 days after the downl oad date.