The Ruckus Network Launches, We Look For The O-Ring

Another day, another iTunes competitor. Ruckus has been kicking around for a couple of years now, but it has finally gotten its act together enough to launch a coherent music store. But “music store” might be the wrong term to use, as all of the music downloaded from Ruckus, even that from major label artists, is free.

The idea is that by offering the music in an easy-to-navigate, well-organized system, as well as doing away with subscription fees, the labels could beat P2P downloads at their own game, and make some coin at the same time.

Sure, it sounds good, until you actually see what it’s up to.

Ruckus isn’t open to everyone; the ad-based download service is restricted to college students, much like beer bongs. In addition, it won’t work with your iPod or even your Zune, as the songs are in Microsoft’s Windows Media WMA format, with the pesky DRM attached. That’s good news if your cheap gramma got you one of the PlaysForSure POSes out there, but we have a feeling the other 98 percent of co-eds will keep their LimeWire up and running.

Ruckus Network []