An Important Message From Sony’s Chief Information Security Officer: "OH GOD, NO, IT'S HAPPENING AGAIN"Poor old Sony was hammered by both media and its own users earlier this year, after news broke of a large-scale hacking of its PlayStation Network. And now it’s happened again.

The latest case involves Sony detecting a mass attempt to sign in to PSN accounts with a job-lot of user names and passwords, which the company says it believes may have been obtained through a third-party rather than extracted from PSN itself. Fortunately, the “overwhelming majority” of user name and password combinations failed.

However, Sony believes approximately 93,000 accounts (33k in Europe) have been compromised, with outsiders able to correctly sign in to PlayStation Network using the stolen data. Those accounts have now been “temporarily locked” pending a new password reset and account validation scheme.

Sony says credit card data is safe, and it’ll refund anyone should they find evidence of any suspicious activity. [Sony via T3]

Image credit: NME.

An Important Message From Sony’s Chief Information Security Officer: "OH GOD, NO, IT'S HAPPENING AGAIN"Our newest offspring Gizmodo UK is gobbling up the news in a different timezone, so check them out if you need another Giz fix.

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It’s no secret that the music industry has undergone massive changes over the last ten to fifteen years. According to the Recording Industry Association of America, total US music sales have dropped an average of 8% each year since 1999, from $14.6 billion to just over $6 billion. Having heard this, you probably wouldn’t expect that in the first half of 2011, US sales are up by 1%. Okay, so it’s just 1%. But consider that in the first half of 2010, sales were down 11% year-over-year.

So what’s responsible for reversing this trend? Ever-increasing broadband speed has enabled mass media consumption on the web, paving the way for music discovery services like Pandora,, Grooveshark and iLike. Because of these services, the average person can now find and listen to a more diverse body of music than ever before – and it’s catching on. Unique visitors to radio category websites has increased by nearly 19% since last year, with Pandora leading the pack at 11,824,629 in June 2011 – that’s 81% yearly growth.

Over the last few years, Pandora has made decisions to support growth of their user base and help them stay ahead of the competition, even if just barely at times. In 2008, the Pandora app became one of the most consistently downloaded apps in the Apple store. By 2010, Pandora was present on more than 200 connected consumer electronic devices ranging from smart-phones to TVs to Blue-ray players. It was in 2010 that Pandora began to break away from the other music discovery services and would attract more than double the unique visitors of, traditionally Pandora’s toughest competitor, by year-end.

In February 2011, Pandora officially filed with the SEC for a $100M IPO, piquing even more interest in the service in the months leading up to their pricing announcement on June 15th. The company’s future may not be as bright though, as innovative alternatives to radio-style listening like Spotify, Music Beta by Google and Apple’s iCloud are beginning to gain traction. While these services are very different than Pandora – and from each other – there is no doubt that they pose a threat to the current music landscape. You can be sure we’re keeping an eye on it.

So, have you tried Spotify? Music Beta? iCloud? What do you think? Are you ready to abandon Pandora?

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