The Threat That Made Me Create a New Page For LAME

Hey there!

A couple of weeks ago, we taught the second week’s class in the ACX Master Class – the one where you download and install both Audacity and LAME.

What happened to one of my students made me finally take action against the LAME page we’ve been sending you all to for years…and to create one of my own (

Here’s the story…

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Hope this helps!


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hey there it’s David H Lawrence the 17th
and today um I want to talk to you about
what happened to a student of mine I
don’t want it to ever happen to another
student of mine ever again and so I
decided to take some action about it so
a little bit of background we’re
teaching the AC X master class as we
speak we’re just wrapping it up and a
couple weeks ago we were teaching the
class that helps students gather
together all their assets their
equipment and the software and the
plug-ins for that software the software
we recommend when we’re teaching and
teaching the class is audacity it’s
lovely it’s awesome but it requires a
plug-in to be able to export mp3 files
audacity is open source so it can’t use
a licensed mp3 encoder like the classic
one that iTunes uses because that’s
licensed by Fraunhofer Thompson or is it
ton Thompson Fraunhofer this year who
knows but there’s an alternative and
it’s a reverse engineered legally
reverse engineered mp3 encoder called
lame and basically audacity uses lame to
take whatever you’ve recorded and turn
it into mp3 files which you would then
upload to ACX so lame is also open
source and it’s only available from the
open source team as a bunch of code
which isn’t useful for Macintosh users
or Windows users because you can’t
install it unless you wrap an installer
around it okay so we sent people four
years to a site in Argentina run by a
lovely musician who did the rapper the
Installer rapper for both Macintosh and
Windows and open it up for the world to
be able to you know take when they
needed it
but he realized what kind of awesome
traffic he was getting and what he
started to do a few years ago was add
advertisements banner ads you know pop
ups things like that to his site and
it’s now become like this
absolutely dense thicket a morass of all
these ads it’s hard to find the actual
link to download lame for either
Macintosh or Windows and you have to
download it to be able to to work in in
audiobooks with audiblelistener
a dialog box box popped up that looked
very much like the Installer but it
wasn’t it was an ad and what it ended up
doing was changing heard when she
clicked on it thinking it was the
Installer she ended up changing her
default browser to something other than
Google I’m not even gonna give publicity
to what it ended up being because it was
a crappy move for that advertiser to
make and it was the straw that broke the
camel’s back for me with this page I
mean I’ve very appreciative of the
musician for being so generous to host
this and but it’s now dangerous and so
what I did was I said I’m fixing this so
max smart one of my coaches happens to
be very experienced at creating code for
Macintosh installers he knows what he’s
doing and he very generously offered to
create because this is all free
everything here is free he offered to
create an installer for me that would be
a place that I could send my students
whether it’s a CX master class or vo to
go go or camera to you or rehearsal Pro
anybody actually in the world so this
page that I created is not protected
he created installers for for Macintosh
for all versions of Macintosh operating
system versions so I was currently as we
record this up through dark mojave and
for Windows and it’s now on a special
page lame dot vo to go go calm
and there are no ads I mean it’s just a
plain page on the view toboga comm site
I mean if you consider the links to the
rest of vo to gogo comm that are on
every page ads well that’s up to you but
there are no like Google ads or any
other ad purveyor on the page it is
simply if you want lame for Windows if
you want lame for Macintosh here they
are and we’re hosting them locally on
our site on our server so it doesn’t
take you anywhere else you go you get
the installer for whatever version of
computer you’re using you install it and
no chance could you be sidetracked or
fooled by an ad that looks like an
and I hate to do this to the guy but
it’s like enough is enough
I can’t III can’t send my students there
in all good conscience if the ads that
he’s running potentially could be
dangerous to them and change something
that drastic about their browser you
know I mean if you expect Google to be
your search engine then you should have
Google as your search engine and it’s
going to require some work on her part
to fix that and I don’t want to have
that happen to anybody ever again
so from now on I’m gonna be publicizing
the fact that if you go to Lane vo to go
go comm you will be able to get you’ll
be able to be in a safe place to
download lame for either Mac or Windows
and slowly over time people will find
out about it yes it will be beneficial
to me because it will bring people to
the site especially people who need to
export mp3s which is voice over people
but I will make sure that nobody ever
gets caught like that again and I’m
willing to pay the fees to host what
could be a lot of traffic a lot of
throughput traffic for that to be safe I
think that we’re in a in a place right
now when it comes to things like the
other day I did a video on robo calls
and spam and we’re at a place right now
where it’s an arms race between
nefarious kind of blackhat advertisers
who create ads that look too much like
actual work and not enough like an ad
there’s a reason that radio stations
will say before an ad that sounds like a
newscast the following is a paid
advertisement or on television they’ll
do that with an infomercial that looks
very much like a newscast or in
newspapers or in a magazine you’ll see a
tiny little bar that says this is an
advertisement when it looks like
editorial copy
I think we need the equivalent of that
in the world of online ads we don’t have
it I don’t know how we would do it but
enough is enough and I I just thought
I’d do something about it
so it’s lame dot vo – go go comm if you
want to get the latest version of lame
if you got one that’s working and you
don’t need the latest version we will
update it over time as the latest
version is updated the open-source
version is updated and I’m thinking
about doing it for audacity as well
although the audacity site is a dot org
site and it has no ads currently so I
think I’m gonna leave that the way it is
but if that ever changes I’ll do
something about it
ever get caught with an ad that looked
very very safe and like a piece of a
webpage but it turned out to be
something that like ruined your life
maybe it added malware or it added some
sort of threat to your computer you know
these kinds of ads can can engage in
ransomware I mean it’s just it’s just a
bad section to be in and I feel bad for
this musician because I don’t think he’s
got notes up that say hey be careful
about the ads that you click on but you
know people that are just getting
started they’re not going to be able to
respond to things that way they’re not
gonna be able to know the difference
between a real ad and or real copy on a
web page you know stuff that you should
be able to click on and an ad that looks
like that so yeah so that’s it so let me
know in the comments below what you
think of all this and what your
experience has been trying to stay safe
on the Internet if you’d like to
subscribe to my channel go ahead and
click on my head there if there’s no
head there there’s a you know some sort
of a sign up button somewhere on the
page if you’d like the latest video that
I put up in these one-a-day videos go
ahead and click on that frame there and
they’ll play it for you I’m David H
Lawrence the 17th I thank you so much
for watching these videos and I will
talk to you tomorrow



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  1. That’s great that you were able to create a new website that is safe for your clients. I’m not a fan of ads that are created to fool you.

    On Audacity, I export files as an mp3 without having to install any plug ins. Under File, then Export….there’s an option to Export as an mp3.

    1. Actually, that means you already have LAME (or some third party equivalent) installed, and that it’s working properly. Audacity does not have the ability to export MP3s without any plug in at all. To check to see what plugin you’re using, if you’re in a Mac, go to the Audacity menu and choose Preferences, then choose the Library pane and look to see what MP3 export library you have installed. I’d bet it’s LAME 3.99.2 or thereabouts.

  2. Thanks David!!

    Yes, I have clicked on an ad that looks like a link I was seeking only to have something terribly different pop up! Frustrating and scary! Thank you so much for looking out for your client I have already downloaded LAME for my VO work, but I will definitely share this info with others. And, thank you for these daily posts.

  3. Thank you David for providing this service! I have also been tricked into clicking on a section that says “Download Now” where it looks like a logical place to acquire information you are seeking, but it’s actually in the middle of the instructions. Lucky to have you as a Guardian Angel. 🙂

  4. Hey David thanks for protecting us! My eighteen year old son, responsibly took it upon himself to register for selective service and later told us he had done so and paid $21.00 to do it. Whaaat? That’s mandatory and free. Checking into it, we discovered companies listed first on search engines that look like government sites but charge innocent young men a fee to register.

  5. Yep. David, you’re a classy, caring person with integrity who goes beyond the norm to ensure your students (and others) are getting what they need.
    What an unfortunate thing to happen to one of the tribe.
    Thanks for taking care of her. And us.

  6. Thank you for doing this. I remember having to really carefully ready every box to make sure I clicked the right one. At the time, I didn’t know you and Dan other than a friend said you guys were okay. And it made me wonder about your credibility for sending me to a place that had all this crap. That was a fleeting moment, but it did cross my mind. I’m so glad you are working hard to protect all our best interest. Cheers.

  7. Hey, David! yes I followed this in your groups. It is laudable that you have gone to these extremes to protect your students. It’s one of the reasons I love and support you.

    You might want to use your relationships, particularly with the developers at Audacity, to get the word out. The Fraunhofer patents, administered for licensing by Technicolor, expired almost a year ago. They did not let them go lightly.

    In fact they are still hinting that certain methods of using the codec in one’s programming may still be protected. This is a scare tactic. officially the MP3 codec licensing program ended in April, 2017. Any developer, including Audacity, should have no difficulty incorporating it into their own software. They don’t need to use any implementation tools from Fraunhofer.

    For reference, here is Fraunhofer’s own statement:


  8. Thanks for having the integrity to do this. I have had my browser changed also by clicking on something, but it was not the LAME site. This practice is very bad for the victims and bad for the internet in general as it makes me very wary of clicking on any thing and of internet ads in general.

  9. Thank you for providing this vital information. I have run into issues with trying to find the correct “download” in the past and it has made me very hesitant to click on any links. I use Audacity which I love for its ease of use. I can’t remember which plug in I had for it, but my computer is currently “in the shop” for a hard drive issue. When I get it back, and with your approval, I will be using your link for the LAME plug in when I reinstall Audacity.
    Thank you for looking out for those of us in the VO community. It is truly appreciated.