Join us at TNW Conference 2021 for insights into the future of tech →

Your sardonic source for consumer tech stories


What’s up with Audacity’s new privacy policy?

Download an older version

What’s up with Audacity’s new privacy policy?
Ivan Mehta
Story by

Ivan Mehta

Ivan covers Big Tech, India, policy, AI, security, platforms, and apps for TNW. That's one heck of a mixed bag. He likes to say "Bleh." Ivan covers Big Tech, India, policy, AI, security, platforms, and apps for TNW. That's one heck of a mixed bag. He likes to say "Bleh."

If you record music or podcasts on your computer, you might be familiar with Audacity. It’s a free, open-source, and cross-platform app that helps you record and edit audio over multiple tracks.

The software’s new privacy policy — after the Muse group acquired it in April — came into effect on July 2. The change notes that Audacity will collect more data from you, including operating system version, processor, country based on IP address, crash reports, and non-fatal error codes and messages.

The company is collecting all this information under the guise of “data necessary for law enforcement, litigation and authorities’ requests (if any).”

Audacity's new privacy policy that collects multiple new data points from you
Audacity’s new privacy policy that collects multiple new data points from you

As Engadget noted, the new privacy policy also stores your data for a day in an indefinable way, and ban under-13 users for unspecified reasons.

After this change, community members of the Linux subreddit angrily pointed out that these changes violate privacy and there’s no solid ground for collecting this information.

It also called to the community for developing a forked version of the app — as Audacity is open-sourced. Plus, you can always download older versions. You can also look at some other alternatives such as Oceanaudio and Wavosaur. Thank god for open-sourced software.

Did you know we have a newsletter all about consumer tech? It’s called Plugged In – and you can subscribe to it right here.

Also tagged with