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Or could it be that the labels realize that Apple has too much power (as the #1 digital distributor and the #2 overall distributor) and want to hurt that status a bit so they can get some leverage over negotiations with Apple? I think Apple would gladly give up DRM, if anything, to simply what it does with iTunes.

David Dugan

Yeah, sorry, but your take on the iTunes situation is quite backwards. Doug Morris of Universal Music has publicly stated that he's willing to keep DRM-free music away from Apple for another six months to a year in an effort to prop up Amazon as much as possible.

Don't kid yourself. It's the labels. They are desperate for a legitimate iTunes competitor.

Bruno Dexter

There's no proof that Apple prefers "lock-in" for its iPod customers and goes against record company research which concluded that there is on average fewer than 20 ITMS purchases on the average iPod. In addition, considering how dominant Apple is in MP3 player sales it would be counter-intuitive to keep DRM when a huge competitor has proven successful at selling DRM free media. No, the record companies are playing slimy hard ball and Amazon happens to be benefiting from it.
The labels main beef with Jobs and Co. is that Apple won't let them charge more for singles. Of course NO ONE will pay more for singles, but that is a different story.


No Podcasts available on the iTunes Store come with DRM to my knowledge. Also Apple doesn't charge users for this service. So if Apple were evil, then they wouldn't have provided such a service over the past few years.

Bruce Houghton

Great points but if this was just about not liking jobs and wanting competition, why not give DRM free tracks to Rhapsody, Napster and others?


as usual, everyone wants to blame the labels, but i think bruce is right... the iTunes+iPod closed system was by design very from the very beginning

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