Thursday, September 20, 2007

Call Me Fishmeal.: iPhone & iPod: contain or disengage?:

So it is with iTunes. Apple has engaged two of the most cock-thirsty and money-grubbing conglomerates in the United States -- the movie and record industries -- in what we all wanted to believe was an attempt to engage and contain them. And, initially, we all agreed Apple was doing good: they had, for the first time, made legal downloads more compelling than stealing music. For a single data point, I've personally bought 915 songs from the iTunes music store, and hundreds of TV episodes and dozens of movies. I own six iPods and have bought 18 iPhones to give away.

And we all took heart when Steve published that letter saying how much he hated DRM, and how he'd drop it if the labels would, and even if the rumors are correct and EMI was already planning to drop DRM and Steve just rushed in and took credit, it was still a bold stance for him to take; a challenge to the rest of the industry. And I immediately upgraded all the tunes I could to iTunes Plus, and bought a bunch more albums. And it was good.

But recently, well... the generous view would be that Apple's screwing up, and the non-generous view would be that they are just plain getting greedy.