iTunes zaps 122GB of customer’s music


Apple updated its Music Application iTunes to 12.4 for Mac and Windows on Monday, It was updated from interface and navigation. It was not a big deal – unless the music service subscriber faced a bigger issue, when the service deleted 122 GB of music from his laptop.

Consider the plight of Apple Music subscriber James Pinkstone. He took to his blog earlier this month to warn fellow users about a potentially catastrophic issue with Apple’s streaming service. According to the post, Apple Music deleted 122 GB of music from Pinkstone’s laptop without his permission. Making matters worse, Pinkstone had composed some of the music himself, and the original WAV files he created were converted to lower-quality audio files during the process. The entire story is reminiscent of what popular Apple blogger Jim Dalrymple went through shortly after Apple Music first launched. Thankfully, Pinkstone had a recent backup of his music library and was able to recover everything he thought he’d lost. And Dalrymple, too, was able to recover his files (with Apple’s help).

But now the problem that had been blamed on Apple Music (Apple’s Spotify-like subscription music service that debuted in 2015) may be more of an iTunes issue. On Friday, Apple provided The Loop (Dalrymple’s site) with a statement acknowledging that “an extremely small number” of users had described instances of files being deleted from a personal music library without the user’s permission. Apple went on to say the company is investigating the issue, and an upcoming iTunes update will add “safeguards” to prevent the issue from occurring. That said, the statement from Apple also notes the company has been unsuccessful with attempts to replicate the issue in testing. That brings us back to iTunes 12.4. Though its release coincides with the music-deletion woes, it’s unclear if the update included the promised “safeguard.” An Apple representative did not immediately respond to CNET’s request for comment.

Despite Apple’s inability to reproduce the issue, it’s a relief the company is actively working on preventing further headaches for its users. Apple asks those who have experienced issues with missing files from a music library to contact AppleCare. Users interested in the iTunes 12.4 update can click the “update” tab on the Mac App Store, or download the app for Windows and Mac at Apple’s site.