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Digital download day, take 2

Free music offer relaunched

Digital music site OD2 (on demand distribution) has relaunched its Digital Download Day offer after last year's attempt saw the website swamped by users.

The day which, rather oddly, lasted a whole week, presented users with the chance to download £5 worth of music or streaming video from the www.od2.com.

But the site was overwhelmed with people wishing to take advantage of the deal, with over 15,000 people logging on each day. Consequently, many missed out. The company was unavailable to comment on how many people had actually received their fiver's worth of material.

"We just felt we could have captured more people had the servers been prepared," said a spokeswoman at OD2.

To avoid this happening again and to give everyone a chance to take part, OD2 has set up a preregistration scheme which is open from today until the 21 March when the week-long offer begins.

The initiative has been championed by the Ifpi (International Federation of the Phonographic Industry) as a way of highlighting the range of legitimate online services available to consumers.

"It is a useful step in the fight against global online music piracy. Record companies in Europe are now providing many tens of thousands of tracks for consumers to buy and that undoubtedly puts us in a better position to fight back against music theft on the internet," said Jay Berman, spokesman at the Ifpi.

This year's day is open not only to UK residents, but also to those living in France, Germany, Spain and Italy. European visitors can get a slightly less generous €5 (about £3.30) worth of downloads.

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