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MacBytes
Feb 7, 2006, 12:51 AM
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Category: News and Press Releases
Link: Antitrust Suit Against Apple Over iPod, iTunes to Proceed (http://www.macbytes.com/link.php?sid=20060207015145)
Description:: Apple Computer Inc. must face several federal and state antitrust claims arising from the operation of its iTunes online music store and the sale of its iPod digital music players, a federal judge in California has ruled.

Posted on MacBytes.com (http://www.macbytes.com)
Approved by Mudbug

solvs
Feb 7, 2006, 03:15 AM
Why? A majority does not a monopoly make. You can play iTunes songs in a CD player once you burn a CD. Or just play it on your computer. You don't need an iPod to play them. Similarly, you can use mp3, wav, aiff, and other file types on iPods. You don't need to use iTunes MS. You don't even need iTunes as there are other programs to put files on there. Works as an external hard drive too.

So when are we going to get MS DRM for Macs? Same principle, right?

Fender2112
Feb 7, 2006, 05:55 AM
Myth 1: Songs Purchased from iTunes Music Store can only be played on an iPod - False.
The first album I purchased from ITMS I burned to CD and played in my truck - long before I purchased an iPod.

Myth 2: iPod will only play songs Purchased from iTunes Music Store - False.
I have my whole CD collection on my iPod. None of which was purchased from ITMS. Not to mention that ITMS did not exist when the iPod was first introduced.

Myth 3: Apple has a monopoly - False.
There is plenty of competition, they just suck.

T-Stex
Feb 7, 2006, 07:12 AM
I really don't see this suit going anywhere. Although I'm not a lawyer, I can't really see the case against Apple here.

Timepass
Feb 7, 2006, 07:47 AM
Why? A majority does not a monopoly make. You can play iTunes songs in a CD player once you burn a CD. Or just play it on your computer. You don't need an iPod to play them. Similarly, you can use mp3, wav, aiff, and other file types on iPods. You don't need to use iTunes MS. You don't even need iTunes as there are other programs to put files on there. Works as an external hard drive too.

So when are we going to get MS DRM for Macs? Same principle, right?

Well first apple has a little more than a majority of the market. They have it pretty well corned. The apple iPod and iTMS each have 70+% of the market. Also you CAN do the cd burning ripping trick but that is a work around for the larger problem and average consumer does not know this (plus you are limited on the burn count you can do). You putting extra things the iPod can do. Also the iPod can not play music boughten from other music stores unless you do the work around thing.

This law suit may fail but the fact is that it is only a matter of time before apple gets nailed for this and will have to change there pratices in the market. Apple is quickly becoming the M$ of the music store and portable players industry (that being in the terms of market share only.) And that means apple has to play be diffenernt rules than everyone else. I am intersted in how this is going to pan out.

angelwatt
Feb 7, 2006, 08:05 AM
I think this guy needs to go take a nap.

iMeowbot
Feb 7, 2006, 08:18 AM
I was wondering how long it would take before a tying suit came up. Apple's only hope here is that the precedents are somewhat contradictory.

Timepass
Feb 7, 2006, 11:07 AM
I was wondering how long it would take before a tying suit came up. Apple's only hope here is that the precedents are somewhat contradictory.

Hopefully for apple. but I personly have been on the other side of the fence and have been wanting something like this to happen for a long time. (yes I would really only choose the iPod and iTMS right now. but I would like the option to get stuff from other music stores and I would like the opintion on when I replace my iPod to be able to buy something other than the iPod and still be able to play all the stuff from the iTMS on it with out jumping though a lot of hoops to make sure it worked.

The case that show precedients agaist apple will be dealing with M$ windows and how that works. ruling when again M$ for abusing their power and the ruling can easily go agaist apple for abusing there raw market power they have right now. The power making it hard for new comers to get involved. A lot of manufactors dont want to make both a music store and a music player. They want to make one or the other. Because apple controls both very strongly it hard for a new player to enter. Now if it was just ipods vs other players apple would win. they are not abusing there power there. It just a good product. the problem comes with they 2 separt markets interfer with eachother and you use you power in one to control the other. Apple just doing it both ways. They use the fact they have a huge market share in each to make sure it stays that way.

I hate to say it but I am hoping apples looses. I would love to see other players working with music from iTMS. (no the players dont have to work with iTunes. Just work with songs boughten though iTMS.) Same goes for the iPOD playing music from other music stores.

Heck these entire law suit would be over if there would just be a DRM standard that everyone used. I is what I want. (waht I really want is no DRM but since i know I cannt have that I want it to an industy Standard and it not to be WMA.

rjwill246
Feb 7, 2006, 11:07 AM
the fact is that it is only a matter of time before apple gets nailed for this and will have to change there pratices in the market. Apple is quickly becoming the M$ of the music store and portable players industry (that being in the terms of market share only.) And that means apple has to play be diffenernt rules than everyone else. I am intersted in how this is going to pan out.

Well, a fact is a tangible item--- you have advanced an opinion and that does not make it a given 'fact' that Apple will have to change its ways. No one is forced into buying an iPod nor do they have to use iTMS. Apple has designed a system of interoperative elements that results in an efficient and easy experience for the user. If you don't like that, don't buy Apple products. You have a choice.

Note that I would like my BMW to be able to use cheaper GM parts-- it isn't going to happen. Perhaps a class action suit...... right!!!

zulgand04
Feb 7, 2006, 11:20 AM
how is this any different then all of the other music stores only being aviable for windows, or not being able to watch DRM WMF because microsoft doesnt suport it on the mac. ITs the same concept if i want to watch or listen to something in WMF with DRM i have to go out and get a windows computer. Should't that be a lawsuit too, but ohh i forgot the iPod is the hot item now for lawsuits, i really hate the legal system in this country. People sueing so such minor things. In my opion this is nothing new in the world of tecnology, if you want windows you need a wintel, if you want osX you need a mac/mactel. Don't see any lawsuits flying around about macs being the only ones to use osX This is just someone looking for money just like the hearing lose suit, crap.

SiliconAddict
Feb 7, 2006, 12:03 PM
That's fine. It will be thrown out. Why? Simple. If you want you can go with a dozen other players and Napster, or Musicmatch as an alternative. There is nothing forcing anyone into using Apple's wares.



Myth 3: Apple has a monopoly - False.
There is plenty of competition, they just suck.

And therein is the core issue. These idiots want Apple’s solution but want someone else’s music store or the reverse. Don’t bitch to Apple bitch to the people who are making the craptasic wares.

Timepass
Feb 7, 2006, 01:13 PM
Well, a fact is a tangible item--- you have advanced an opinion and that does not make it a given 'fact' that Apple will have to change its ways. No one is forced into buying an iPod nor do they have to use iTMS. Apple has designed a system of interoperative elements that results in an efficient and easy experience for the user. If you don't like that, don't buy Apple products. You have a choice.

Note that I would like my BMW to be able to use cheaper GM parts-- it isn't going to happen. Perhaps a class action suit...... right!!!


By you argument. No one FORCES you to buy M$ Windows. No FORCES you to use it and yet they have gotten in trouble for it time and time again. On top of that they run under some pretty heavy legal rules. That is because of there rare market share they have that power. Apple is getting quickly that way with the music market.

840quadra
Feb 7, 2006, 01:18 PM
oh yay! An other suit against a company that is doing well, by people that are not, and want a piece of the action.

Reminds me of a local suit were one auto shop sued the other because customers started to go to shop A as opposed to shop B. Nevermind the fact that shop B did dodgy work, and shop A charged less and did it correctly the first time.

iMeowbot
Feb 7, 2006, 01:30 PM
By you argument. No one FORCES you to buy M$ Windows. No FORCES you to use it and yet they have gotten in trouble for it time and time again. On top of that they run under some pretty heavy legal rules. That is because of there rare market share they have that power. Apple is getting quickly that way with the music market.
Yes, the fact that they hold patents on the stuff does establish the presumption of market power, and that was recently upheld in the ongoing Independent Ink v. Illinois Tool Works suit. That, in combination with the iPod market share, stands a pretty good chance of it qualifying as monopoly market power.

The iTMS DRM issue is a very real one. You can't get the equivalent experience using iTMS songs on another portable player, or get the equivalent functionality of iTMS when buying from one of the competing mainstream download services. Ability to play on a computer doesn't matter here, it's not reasonable to expect someone to strap a notebook computer to the arm while jogging; this is about portable players. That the tracks can be exported to CD doesn't cut it, because the options for using those tracks in another portable player will give only degraded functionality (either loss of space efficiency from using uncompressed files, or loss of sound quality from recompression).

Really, Apple will face an uphill battle trying to shake off these allegations.

Loge
Feb 7, 2006, 01:53 PM
If you want to use the tracks on different portable players, then purchase the CDs rather than buy from iTMS, using whatever bit rate and any format your player supports.

If iTMS was selling content that was unavailable elsewhere I'd have some sympathy with this viewpoint. (I know there are some exclusives, but that's a tiny minority).

Timepass
Feb 7, 2006, 02:05 PM
If you want to use the tracks on different portable players, then purchase the CDs rather than buy from iTMS, using whatever bit rate and any format your player supports.

If iTMS was selling content that was unavailable elsewhere I'd have some sympathy with this viewpoint. (I know there are some exclusives, but that's a tiny minority).

but cds are a different market. You can not buy on cd only the songs you want. You have to buy the entire album compared to paying $0.99 to get the one song you want. People have shown that is what they want. They where pirating music because the only want the few hit songs by the artist not the entire albume.
They are not attacking the iPod itself or the iTMS itself. They are going after the fact that they only work with eachother. So if you have a creative Zen and have music from the iTMS you are SOL the stuff does not work.
They are not asking itunes player to play nice with the other players. They are asking for the other players to be able to play apple DRM. And for apple players to play music from other stores.

Also rememeber the iTMS has one of the largest if not the largest number of songs. The other major players have no where near the number of iTMS. For you argument to work there would need to be several others that had the same number of choices of music as the iTMS.

They are attacking it on both sides. From what I gather they are just asking apple to "play nice" with others. For the iPod to play music from other stores and for stuff from iTMS to work with iPod. People choose other stores because they like either there features, cost or something else better. Same for the non ipod players. Right now it very hard for some one to enter either one of the markets because they cannt go up agaist apple.

iMeowbot
Feb 7, 2006, 02:29 PM
If you want to use the tracks on different portable players, then purchase the CDs rather than buy from iTMS, using whatever bit rate and any format your player supports.
Awesome, where can I get the CD of Lou Reed's "Satellite of Love", with only that track?

Loge
Feb 7, 2006, 02:39 PM
Awesome, where can I get the CD of Lou Reed's "Satellite of Love", with only that track?

Where would you have got it before iTMS? You may not have all the choice you want but you do have more choice than before.

ScottB
Feb 7, 2006, 02:43 PM
I think the iPod is too popular. I'm (not pleased but), for lack of a better work, welcoming any encouragement for active competition. However, like all crazes they'll eventually fade from popularity, and Apple products, in my experience, have always been of high quality and deserve the amount of sales they've received. I mean, lets face it, the iPod and iTunes has grown the profits of rivals by popularising portable music players.

nagromme
Feb 7, 2006, 04:03 PM
The irony?

Creating an integrated system is the only way Apple could FIGHT a monopoly. Microsoft has long habit of using their monopolies (Windows and Office) to push mediocre products in other areas, when those products couldn't compete on their own. Look at WMP, and WMA stores for instance.

A huge reason why Apple has been able to fight off Microsoft's goal of a WMA DRM monopoly is that they created an integrated system of store and player and jukebox that work smoothly together. (As opposed to the chaos of supporting unknown products from different companies trying to work together a la "Plays For Sure?"--a good parallel for the Windows PC world vs. what Apple has always done with the Mac and Mac OS.)

iMeowbot
Feb 7, 2006, 04:19 PM
Where would you have got it before iTMS?
I know that BMG's service (now Napster 2.0) had it.

California
Feb 7, 2006, 05:07 PM
Well first apple has a little more than a majority of the market. They have it pretty well corned. The apple iPod and iTMS each have 70+% of the market. Also you CAN do the cd burning ripping trick but that is a work around for the larger problem and average consumer does not know this (plus you are limited on the burn count you can do). You putting extra things the iPod can do. Also the iPod can not play music boughten from other music stores unless you do the work around thing.

This law suit may fail but the fact is that it is only a matter of time before apple gets nailed for this and will have to change there pratices in the market. Apple is quickly becoming the M$ of the music store and portable players industry (that being in the terms of market share only.) And that means apple has to play be diffenernt rules than everyone else. I am intersted in how this is going to pan out.

Sorry to be picky, but "boughten" is not a word and your usage of it sinks whatever legal discussion you brought (or broughten) to the table.

My humble opine is that M$ is trying to break Apple's back with lawsuits; just like the lawyer who worked for Microsoft is the same guy suing Apple for iPod hearing impairment...

What is funny is my iPod Shuffles were for PC and HP as well as Mac. So what the heck is this lawsuit about?

Timepass
Feb 7, 2006, 05:27 PM
Sorry to be picky, but "boughten" is not a word and your usage of it sinks whatever legal discussion you brought (or broughten) to the table.

My humble opine is that M$ is trying to break Apple's back with lawsuits; just like the lawyer who worked for Microsoft is the same guy suing Apple for iPod hearing impairment...

What is funny is my iPod Shuffles were for PC and HP as well as Mac. So what the heck is this lawsuit about?


Well that last line just showed you clearly did not read the law suit or even read other post. You just say Apple being in a law suite and decided that what ever the case is that apple is right and who ever is sueing them is wrong.

They are being taken to court over the fact that the iPod will only play the music from the iTMS. And the Music from the iTMS will only play on the iPod.

What they want, is the iPod to play music from the other music stores and for the music from the iTMS to work on other players. That is what they are asking for.
Apple loosing would be a good thing for the consumers. It will give us more choices. We will not be lock into iTMS if we get an iPod or lock into an iPod if we using the iTMS.

California
Feb 7, 2006, 05:40 PM
Well that last line just showed you clearly did not read the law suit or even read other post. You just say Apple being in a law suite and decided that what ever the case is that apple is right and who ever is sueing them is wrong.

They are being taken to court over the fact that the iPod will only play the music from the iTMS. And the Music from the iTMS will only play on the iPod.

What they want, is the iPod to play music from the other music stores and for the music from the iTMS to work on other players. That is what they are asking for.
Apple loosing would be a good thing for the consumers. It will give us more choices. We will not be lock into iTMS if we get an iPod or lock into an iPod if we using the iTMS.

:) Spellingspellingspelling :) Law suite? A place in a hotel for lawyers to meet? Loosing?

Anyway ;) perhaps you are right that I didn't read or didn't care to read about the lawsuit. I just think that it is peculiar that Apple is doing so well and suddenly, people who happened to have worked for M$ in the past are filing lawsuits. Or lawsuites. The real legal crux for my small mind is the iPod video delivery system of films and tv -- and I believe that the powers that be at M$ are trying to prevent their own obsolescence in the video iPod/OSX/MacTel tsunami by taking Apple down now.

I think the iPod is too popular.

OMG. Capitalism works because Capitalism is a meritocracy.

What is this Euro idea that there always has to be some challenger to keep the number one guy in check? This is why the Rosenbergs and others gave away US atomic secrets to the Soviet Union back in the day -- to "curb" the power of the U.S.; and they foisted the enslavement of hundreds of millions of people as well as the deaths of at least 100 million under Mao and Stalin.

Cold War horrors aside, so what if the iPod is the best by far?

Invent your own Pepsi to beat Coke and then we can talk.

It just bugs me that there is this sociaistic knee-jerk reaction to anything good or to excellence in general; that it must be somehow "kept in check" by state imposed or rigged competition so that "things can be fair". What kind of grammar school daydream is that?

There is nothing freer than the inventor who creates something to make our lives better and richer. There is nothing more creepily totalitarian to believe that we must keep that creative freedom somehow "in check" because it is "unfair" that dumber people didn't invent a competitor.

Capitalism is a meritocracy. There is nothing wrong with doing good work and reaping the benefits of your hard labor.

If Bill Gates could have made a better iPod, he would already have done so -- instead he and the powers that be are going after the iPod itself to level the marketplace. Instead of outthinking Apple at the creative stage, they are undermining Apple legally. Now THAT'S creepy Capitalism.

applebum
Feb 7, 2006, 07:12 PM
Yes, the fact that they hold patents on the stuff does establish the presumption of market power, and that was recently upheld in the ongoing Independent Ink v. Illinois Tool Works suit. That, in combination with the iPod market share, stands a pretty good chance of it qualifying as monopoly market power....


Really, Apple will face an uphill battle trying to shake off these allegations.

Actually, I don't see it this way, and I really don't believe the case mentioned above has any bearing on Apple's iPod and iTunes. Some tidbits from the case mentioned:

In a typical tying situation, a patented product is marketed on condition that an unpatented product be purchased with it.

Illinois Tool's Trident division makes printing systems made up of patented ink-jet printheads and non-patented inks for the printheads. In its licensing agreements, Trident conditions-or ties-the sale of its patented printheads on the purchase of its unpatented inks.

Independent Ink Inc. makes and sells ink that can be used in Trident printheads and allegedly at a substantially lower cost. It charged that Trident engaged in illegal tying in violation of §1 of the Sherman Act. After losing in district court, Independent Ink won in the Federal Circuit, which relied on International Salt and Loews in applying the presumption of market power to Trident's patented printheads.


I have marked some important parts. See, there is no tying (according to the definition used in the above case) between the iPod and iTunes. You can use iTunes and never touch an iPod. Nowhere does Apple say that you MUST use an iPod with iTunes. You can buy songs from the music store and listen to them on your computer. You can burn them to a CD and listen to them in any CD player. If you have a Creative Zen, you can take the CD you made in iTunes and import the songs into your Zen (while inconvenient and lossy, still an option). Apple in no way forces you to buy the iPod. The company above forced its customers to purchase their unpatented ink. No option for using other available ink.

You can buy an iPod and never once use the iTunes music store. Want music on that iPod, buy a regular CD and import it to your iPod. Buy music from eMusic.com or mp3tunes.com and put it on your iPod. Buy from another music store (see comments procedure and comments above) and put that on your iPod. Apple does not force the consumer to use the iTunes music store.

So I really don't see how the case above could be considered precedent to go against Apple. Frankly, I think there is far too much choice available for
Apple to have to worry about this at all.

iMeowbot
Feb 7, 2006, 07:35 PM
No, those particulars have nothing to do with the Apple situation. The only common area is what potentially gives each company monopoly power.

Tying can be achieved in multiple ways. In the case of Apple, it would be a technical, rather than contractual, barrier to entry that the company would need to defend.

Loge
Feb 7, 2006, 07:45 PM
I know that BMG's service (now Napster 2.0) had it.

Looks like you're spoilt for choice then.

applebum
Feb 7, 2006, 08:00 PM
No, those particulars have nothing to do with the Apple situation. The only common area is what potentially gives each company monopoly power.

Tying can be achieved in multiple ways. In the case of Apple, it would be a technical, rather than contractual, barrier to entry that the company would need to defend.

What is that common area - patents??? The Printer company from the case had a patent on printer heads that made their product desirable - so desirable they could put in the contract that the customer could NOT buy any other ink (despite other ink being available). Their is nothing patented on the iPod or in iTunes that makes them more desirable than competitors. In fact, didn't Apple just lose some patents in regard to the iPod? (too lazy to look it up now). Beyond that, Apple has no contracts that bind customers to their products. Apple is not throwing its market power around, just its skill and artistry.

According to you:
You can't get the equivalent experience using iTMS songs on another portable player, or get the equivalent functionality of iTMS when buying from one of the competing mainstream download services.

So the experience and ease of use are what is desirable. Unfortunately, I don't think Apple has patented this. And this is why the iPod and iTunes has such marketshare. It certainly isn't because of market power or patents.

iMeowbot
Feb 7, 2006, 08:17 PM
What is that common area - patents???
Yes, exactly. If a company has patents on its products, that is now held to be sufficient to establish that a company has market power. This is important, because market share in and of itself does not establish that a company has monopoly power. And all that matters because strong market power is necessary for a tying allegation to stick.

The Printer company from the case had a patent on printer heads that made their product desirable - so desirable they could put in the contract that the customer could NOT buy any other ink (despite other ink being available). Their is nothing patented on the iPod or in iTunes that
makes them more desirable than competitors.
That is untrue, there are numerous patents as well as pending applications covering the iPod and the iTunes software.

In fact, didn't Apple just lose some patents in regard to the iPod?
No, they have lost no granted patents. They have been required to resubmit an interface-related application because it covers similar ground to an application from a Microsoft employee, but patent applications are not patents.
Beyond that, Apple has no contracts that bind customers to their products.
Again, a contract is not necessary to establish a tying condition. Creation of a closed system through technological means is sufficient to do that. FairPlay results in product degradation for consumers who would use a iTMS downloads with competing hardware, or content from competing download services on the Apple hardware. Apple even went so far as to publicly threaten, and carry out, its intention to sabotage a competing service's content.
Apple is not throwing its market power around, just its skill and artistry.
Yes, market manipulation requires some skill and artistry, but so does safe cracking.

applebum
Feb 7, 2006, 09:01 PM
Again, a contract is not necessary to establish a tying condition. Creation of a closed system through technological means is sufficient to do that. FairPlay results in product degradation for consumers who would use a iTMS downloads with competing hardware, or content from competing download services on the Apple hardware.

Correct, according to this earlier ruling, a contract is not necessary - just patents:

The U.S. Court of Appeals of the Federal Circuit, however, disagreed, citing Supreme Court precedent from
a 1962 case, United States v. Loew's, that said if a product has a patent or copyright, by definition, it has
market power that makes it illegal to tie the sale of a patented product to another.

So, where is the tie in??? While iTunes has patents, it is selling songs which aren't patented. The customer isn't buying fairplay, so I don't think that counts. But for the sake of argument, let's say the song with fairplay attached is the patented product that has market power. What is the tie-in product? What other product must one buy from Apple to enjoy the patented product (the song)? I don't buy the degradation argument, especially considering that anyone that buys a song from iTunes is already buying a degraded product. Said degredation of the product is very subjective....whose ears get to determine if any degredation has occurred?

Besides, let's suppose that the case above is correct, and simply having a patent gives a product market power. Isn't Microsoft's DRM patented? If so, they are in the same boat as Apple. If I can't put their DRM'd song on my iPod, then they are illegally using their market power as well.

So, in that case, I don't see this as being against Apple, but against DRM altogether. The only good I see coming out of this is a universal DRM that all stores and players must adopt.

Timepass
Feb 7, 2006, 09:24 PM
Correct, according to this earlier ruling, a contract is not necessary - just patents:



So, where is the tie in??? While iTunes has patents, it is selling songs which aren't patented. The customer isn't buying fairplay, so I don't think that counts. But for the sake of argument, let's say the song with fairplay attached is the patented product that has market power. What is the tie-in product? What other product must one buy from Apple to enjoy the patented product (the song)? I don't buy the degradation argument, especially considering that anyone that buys a song from iTunes is already buying a degraded product. Said degredation of the product is very subjective....whose ears get to determine if any degredation has occurred?

Besides, let's suppose that the case above is correct, and simply having a patent gives a product market power. Isn't Microsoft's DRM patented? If so, they are in the same boat as Apple. If I can't put their DRM'd song on my iPod, then they are illegally using their market power as well.

So, in that case, I don't see this as being against Apple, but against DRM altogether. The only good I see coming out of this is a universal DRM that all stores and players must adopt.

The tie in is fairplay DRM will only work on the iPod players. Playing it on a computer or cd is not a problem. But of the mp3 players out there, they can not play stuff from the itms. Apple also does not let other DRMs play on the iPod. Btw the iPod has the capiblilitys to play WMA and M$ DRM but Apple choose not to turn it on and let it work. M$ for example is willing to share its DRM with others. Apple is not. That is where the bases is.

Also if you read the artical the judge already throw out apple argument that iTMS and the iPod can be used separately so I know people have been saying that on some posted and it court ruling on it is that it not a vailid here.

applebum
Feb 7, 2006, 11:53 PM
The tie in is fairplay DRM will only work on the iPod players. Playing it on a computer or cd is not a problem. But of the mp3 players out there, they can not play stuff from the itms.

Is this a serious complaint? Let's see, there is the Microsoft Music store, Rhapsody, Napster, and Yahoo Music (any others?). All of these use Microsoft DRM and I believe will all put their music on the "plays for sure" players. All of these stores have ?millions? of songs. If you have another mp3 player and all of these stores to use, why do you need iTunes?? Serious question (for anyone who knows) - with all these music stores, how much content is out there that is ONLY on iTunes. Are these other stores truly lacking in content, or do they pretty much have the same music as iTunes?

Apple also does not let other DRMs play on the iPod. Btw the iPod has the capiblilitys to play WMA and M$ DRM but Apple choose not to turn it on and let it work. M$ for example is willing to share its DRM with others. Apple is not. That is where the bases is.

So, another store is your favorite, but you really want to put your music on an iPod. There are hundreds of other players that functionally do the same thing the iPod does. In fact, most of them have more features than the iPod, and they are usually cheaper. If you like a store that doesn't work with the iPod, buy a different player. You won't be missing out on anything but coolness.

Should Apple truly be punished because they have a monopoly on cool?

Timepass
Feb 8, 2006, 12:06 AM
but look at the raw market share of iTMS has and the iPod. yes there are valid alternatives to each. I dont buy music from iTMS (heck I mostly rip my own) but I making the point on the reason that they are making the arugment. If you can replace the power that apple has right now and quility of ithe product and make it be M$ instead and still be making the same arguments I might be willing to listen to you but you know as well as I do if that was the case you would be screaming for them to loose.

why can M$ make office only work on Windows and all files made in Office only work in Office. There are valid things that are not office dont need office to work and there are other OS but this would be agaist the law. This is an example of a case that you all would be screaming bloody murder about.

LethalWolfe
Feb 8, 2006, 12:11 AM
Unless Apple has used it's status as top dog in this area to unfairly hurt the competition I don't see where the problem is. If, for example, Apple has gone to retailers and said, "If you stock other MP3 players you won't get anymore iPods" that would be a problem, but all Apple has done is made a great mouse trap. They aren't stopping any other company from making a better one. They are just choosing not to let other companies ride on the coat tails of their success.

Halo is a very popular game franchise. But it's not available on PS2 or GC. Should Sony and Nintendo have grounds to sue MS to make all the Halo games cross platform?

As I understand it being a monopoly isn't illegal. What's illegal is if a company uses it's position as a monopoly to unfairly hurt/undermine the competition. MS didn't go to court because it has 95% of the market. It went to court because it told PC companies, "You have to pre-install MS products X, Y, and Z and you can't pre-install competitors products that rival our products."


Lethal

applebum
Feb 8, 2006, 12:34 AM
but look at the raw market share of iTMS has and the iPod. yes there are valid alternatives to each. I dont buy music from iTMS (heck I mostly rip my own) but I making the point on the reason that they are making the arugment. If you can replace the power that apple has right now and quility of ithe product and make it be M$ instead and still be making the same arguments I might be willing to listen to you but you know as well as I do if that was the case you would be screaming for them to loose.

why can M$ make office only work on Windows and all files made in Office only work in Office. There are valid things that are not office dont need office to work and there are other OS but this would be agaist the law. This is an example of a case that you all would be screaming bloody murder about.

First see Lethal's post right below yours - he makes a great point. Secondly, despite the huge marketshare that Apple has, it really doesn't give them much power to throw around. Say Apple decide tomorrow they wanted iTunes to make more money than it has been. So they decide to raise the price of songs to $1.49 and keep the extra .50 for themselves. How long do you honestly believe that 80% marketshare would last??? There is so much competition, that I honestly believe iTunes would be nothing more than a footnote inside of a few months.

However, if MS did the same thing with Office, people (especially businesses) would be forced to pay the higher prices. Even though there is more competition today than a few years ago, there really is no good alternative. It would be extremely difficult for most businesses to get something else in place, and thus easier for them to simply pony up the extra money

solvs
Feb 8, 2006, 04:49 AM
Everyone does realize that monopolies are perfectly legal right? Even if Apple was (which it isn't), they'd have to prove that it was using it's monopoly power illegally, as noted above. And I mean, what would the resolution be? Allow MS DRM which doesn't even play on Macs? Windows has a monopoly, but MS got nailed because they were doing illegal and predatory things with it. And since we all know what happened with that, I don't see how they could do anything more than give Apple a slap on the wrist if convicted.

applebum
Feb 8, 2006, 06:10 AM
... Allow MS DRM which doesn't even play on Macs?

Excellent point, and I just verified that this is still true. Apparently if you want to buy and listen to and enjoy Microsoft DRM'd music, you must buy/own a Microsoft OS. I checked this at the 4 main music stores (MSN, Yahoo, Rhapsody, and Napster) and all are available only for Microsoft OSes. Seems to me this would make a much stronger tying case than Apple's.

AlmostThere
Feb 8, 2006, 06:48 AM
As I understand it being a monopoly isn't illegal. What's illegal is if a company uses it's position as a monopoly to unfairly hurt/undermine the competition.


Isn't this the issue?

Apple is (subjectively) leveraging its dominance in the portable player market to prevent competition in the online music distribution market.

The link specifically notes Apple's response to the compatibility developed by Real - Apple can and will respond to prevent any other online store selling music for the iPod.

On a side note, I like the name "Judge Ware", presiding over the case. Sounds like the sort of computer programme that the RIAA uses.

LethalWolfe
Feb 8, 2006, 01:12 PM
Isn't this the issue?

Apple is (subjectively) leveraging its dominance in the portable player market to prevent competition in the online music distribution market.

The link specifically notes Apple's response to the compatibility developed by Real - Apple can and will respond to prevent any other online store selling music for the iPod.

Apple isn't stopping Real, Napster, Yahoo, Creative, or MS from developing their own unique players and/or on-line music services. All Apple has done is protect it's own product line by not allowing other companies to reserve engineer them and use Apple's tech w/o permission. Apple has sunk lots of time, money and politics (i.e. Jobs convincing networks, labels, and studios to sign onto iTMS) into iTunes, iPod, and iTMS and I don't see why other companies should be free to leech off of Apple's risk, hard work, and success.

AFAIK there is no law saying Apple has to share its success just like MS doesn't have to share Halo and Nintendo doesn't have to share Mario. There is no reason why Apple, or any company, should be punished for making widely popular products.

The basis of the suit is just stupid, IMO. Following that logic Sony is guilty because PS2 games, hardware, and accessories are incompatible w/MS's and Nintendo's games, hardware, and accessories.


Lethal

baleensavage
Feb 8, 2006, 01:43 PM
IMO this was bound to happen sooner or later. Whether it will suceed or not is another story. Apple has been playing Microsofts game for too long with the iPod. Aside from Motorola, who have they licensed Fairplay to? Nobody that I can think of. And without Fairplay any songs bought on iTMS are useless.

With music you at least have the option of burning a CD which then can be reripped into whatever you want. The TV downloads are entirely another story because you can't do anything with them except watch them in iTunes, Quicktime or on an iPod. Thats the reason I have only bought one movie in the store, even though I love the idea of a la carte TV.

As for the people that suggest buying CDs to put on an iPod, I have stopped buying new CDs for that reason. I am not going to drop $20 for something that may or may not work with my iPod and may or may not install spyware on my computer. At least with iTMS I know the limitations of the copy protection. When you buy a CD now, you have no idea what new hairbrained copy-protection Sony or someone else has put on it.

And of course all of this comes down to one thing...DRM. This lawsuit is really about Fairplay. More people want a piece of that pie and Apple won't let them. Frankly I (and many consumers out there) think that DRM should just be abolished. All this junk almost makes me wish for the old days of casette tapes and VHS. But since that isn't going to happen, we're stuck with it, so the music an movie industry need to just come out with one standard DRM scheme and be done with it. They did it with DVDs, why can't they do it with CDs and digital downloads. It's just like the Blu-ray HD-DVD fight. A bunch of big companies butting heads and not giving a thought to the consumer who pays their paychecks.

AlmostThere
Feb 8, 2006, 01:46 PM
Following that logic Sony is guilty because PS2 games, hardware, and accessories are incompatible w/MS's and Nintendo's games, hardware, and accessories.


Sony isn't comparable here. While they do produce the dominant platform albeit not one as dominant as the iPod, they do not actively prevent any other developer from making compatible accessories or software, although there are licence fees involved (and this probably all that companies like Real would want - a fair licence to an iPod compatible DRM format).

Comparisons to MS seem popular: MS produce Windows, Windows is the dominant OS platform by a significant margin and MS also develop software for Windows. If MS introduced features into Windows so that ONLY MS developed software would run, would that be abusing their monopoly position? If they changed Windows every time someone released a competing office suite or media player, would that be abuse?

The current position of Real, Napster, Yahoo in this situation is that of developers effectively left to develop Mac / Linux / Sun / BeOS etc. software. After all, why should other developers be allowed to leech off MS's success?

arn
Feb 8, 2006, 09:37 PM
This was discussed in January 2005

Original thread:

http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=103627

arn

cwedl
Feb 9, 2006, 01:13 AM
Just because a company is doing well isn't a reason to sue. They should pay attention to Microsoft first.

BlueRevolution
Feb 9, 2006, 02:38 AM
the best point I've read so far is baleensavage's comment that DRM serves no purpose. off the top of my head I can (but won't ;) ) name 3 ways that FairPlay-managed songs can be converted to "clean" AAC/MP3/whatever. those engaged in music piracy know them too, and more. so DRM does nothing to them.

what it does is keep honest people from enjoying their music wherever/however they want. I have no doubt if iTunes DRM were removed, their market share would actually increase.

as always, the RIAA is targeting the average consumer as an alternative to the elusive "big fish" it knows are out there but can't find.

[/rant]

quickly, I'll mention I think there are grounds for a lawsuit here, but the circumstances are by no means unique. I don't think in particular Apple is to blame since it is engaging in fairly common business practices here. not to say that there's nothing that could be gained by a successful lawsuit, but it's rather hypocritical of those issuing the suit since they'd have done the exact same in Apple's case.

finally, it would be interesting to see that statistic that Steve never shows us: what percentage iTunes' market share is at when you include illegal downloads. of course, that's a hard number to find... but it would still be interesting.

bigandy
Feb 9, 2006, 06:21 AM
who's up for filing a suit against microsoft then?

because you have to use windows to use their store. or napster, or od2. or any number of the others. and they lock you in to using a windows based music player.

:rolleyes:

Yvan256
Feb 9, 2006, 08:49 AM
What they want, is the iPod to play music from the other music stores and for the music from the iTMS to work on other players. That is what they are asking for.
Apple loosing would be a good thing for the consumers. It will give us more choices. We will not be lock into iTMS if we get an iPod or lock into an iPod if we using the iTMS.

Problem is, nobody's locked into anything with the iTMS and/or the iPod. It's called CDs and it's called burning an audio CD.

Not sure of the DRM restrictions for WMA, but the same could be said for them too.

The only limit comes when you want a direct link from the files to the player, but that's the same as the current Windows/OS X/Linux executables problem (yes I know soundfiles are very different, but the problem lies in the DRM, not the audio).

I'm gonna sue Microsoft for not making their Windows executables not compatible with OS X. No, I don't care if they have an OS X version, I want them to make the Windows one work on OS X.

These lawsuits are silly. Let's just hope the judge knows his technology enough to see through the crap.

Yvan256
Feb 9, 2006, 08:55 AM
Sony isn't comparable here. While they do produce the dominant platform albeit not one as dominant as the iPod, they do not actively prevent any other developer from making compatible accessories or software, although there are licence fees involved (and this probably all that companies like Real would want - a fair licence to an iPod compatible DRM format).

This is exactly like Sony and the PS2. How many hours do you think it would be for Microsoft to get a lawsuit if they were to include PS1 and PS2 emulation in the Xbox360?

Apple isn't preventing anyone from making compatible accessories and is keeping its software locked (their legal choice).

Let's all sue Sony for not making their games available for my Gamecube. Or even more stupid (like this lawsuit), for making their PS2 software not compatible with my Gamecube. :rolleyes:

Yvan256
Feb 9, 2006, 09:03 AM
IMO this was bound to happen sooner or later. Whether it will suceed or not is another story. Apple has been playing Microsofts game for too long with the iPod. Aside from Motorola, who have they licensed Fairplay to? Nobody that I can think of. And without Fairplay any songs bought on iTMS are useless.

So what? It's not illegal for Apple to keep their own stuff proprietary. And as you say, they can no longer be called "closed monopoly" because they did license FairPlay to Motorola (now on two phones, if I'm not mistaken). Apple isn't forcing anyone to buy an iPod or to use the iTMS. Nothing prevents you from using the other online music stores or to buy regular CDs.


With music you at least have the option of burning a CD which then can be reripped into whatever you want. The TV downloads are entirely another story because you can't do anything with them except watch them in iTunes, Quicktime or on an iPod. Thats the reason I have only bought one movie in the store, even though I love the idea of a la carte TV.

I also wish we could export/burn the video stuff to DVD. But that's probably one thing the movie studios don't want. There's also the encoding time to consider.


As for the people that suggest buying CDs to put on an iPod, I have stopped buying new CDs for that reason. I am not going to drop $20 for something that may or may not work with my iPod and may or may not install spyware on my computer. At least with iTMS I know the limitations of the copy protection. When you buy a CD now, you have no idea what new hairbrained copy-protection Sony or someone else has put on it.

So what? It's now Apple's fault that CDs are expensive and have spyware on them? Blame the music labels for that! Or are you saying people should sue Apple because they have a better offer that isn't compatible with their WMA player? (which it is, by way of burning to CD and then re-ripping to WMA).

And of course all of this comes down to one thing...DRM. This lawsuit is really about Fairplay. More people want a piece of that pie and Apple won't let them. Frankly I (and many consumers out there) think that DRM should just be abolished. All this junk almost makes me wish for the old days of casette tapes and VHS. But since that isn't going to happen, we're stuck with it, so the music an movie industry need to just come out with one standard DRM scheme and be done with it. They did it with DVDs, why can't they do it with CDs and digital downloads. It's just like the Blu-ray HD-DVD fight. A bunch of big companies butting heads and not giving a thought to the consumer who pays their paychecks.

Exactly. We could get a common DRM, but we aren't. Let's continue to vote for AAC and FairPlay with our wallets.

Problem is, the justice system seems to be crumbling in the USA. :(

AlmostThere
Feb 9, 2006, 09:25 AM
This is exactly like Sony and the PS2. How many hours do you think it would be for Microsoft to get a lawsuit if they were to include PS1 and PS2 emulation in the Xbox360?
1) Neither Xbox nor PS2 are monopoly platforms.
2) Software and hardware are different markets.
3) Sony have not stopped competing games developers from selling software for their PS2. Licence a developers kit and start writing.

Please :
Where is the monopoly abuse with the PS2?
What have Sony done to prevent other games developers writing and selling games for the PS2?

Apple isn't preventing anyone from making compatible accessories and is keeping its software locked (their legal choice).
Yes they have - Real's store. They made a competing music store and (subjectively, this is a pending court case and there are good arguments for both sides) Apple used their control over the iPod to prevent them competing with the iITMS.

Let's all sue Sony for not making their games available for my Gamecube. Or even more stupid (like this lawsuit), for making their PS2 software not compatible with my Gamecube. :rolleyes:

Again:
Does Sony / Nintendo have a monopoly on games production?
Does Sony / Nintendo use the fact that they are the ONLY people in the world producing games to prevent any other manufacturer selling a games console?

Does Sony / Nintendo have a monopoly in the console market?
Does Sony / Nintendo use their monopoly in the console market to prevent other developers from writing games?

Now:
Does Apple (with a 80-90% market share) have a monopoly in the portable music player market?
Does Apple use that monopoly to prevent competitors to iTMS building online music stores?

fixyourthinking
Feb 9, 2006, 09:34 AM
There's not a reason it resurfaced ... because it didn't ... the case was heard again in September 2005 ... and the judge just last week made the ruling that litigation could go forward.

Question is ... what is Thomas Slattery hoping to gain? This is not a lawsuit from the FTC or SEC as with Microsoft vs Netscape nor as it was with Apple vs Microsoft ... this is an individual attorney looking to get his legal fees paid it looks like to me.

Seasought
Feb 9, 2006, 09:40 AM
Do lawyers ever do anything good in this world?

Yvan256
Feb 9, 2006, 09:45 AM
1) Neither Xbox nor PS2 are monopoly platforms.
2) Software and hardware are different markets.
3) Sony have not stopped competing games developers from selling software for their PS2. Licence a developers kit and start writing.

1. Neither is the iTMS nor iPod. There's plenty of other options out there (in fact there's more choice in both music players and music stores by not choosing iTMS and iPod. Monopolies are not illegal. It's what you do with it and how you got it (like Microsoft, Windows and their licensing... "you don't sell any Linux computers or we stop selling Windows to you").

2. What's different? Music players and computers/game systems are all a combination of software and hardware.

3. Sony decided to have a devkit and license it. There's no law obligating them to do it.

Please :
Where is the monopoly abuse with the PS2?
What have Sony done to prevent other games developers writing and selling games for the PS2?

How about exclusive titles agreements? (You can only make the game for PS2 and/or you can only make that title available for the other platforms six months later so people will buy a PS2 to play it). The only thing I can see that "prevents" a CD playing on an iPod is the stupid hacks music labels put on their music CDs (ex: the Sony rootkit). The iPod isn't limited to music sold on the iTMS, but the PS2 is limited to PS2 software.

In this case, the PS2 (or any console, for that matter) is worst than the iPod. Heck, I can't run Nintendo's Metroid Prime 2 on my Nintendo DS. Should I sue Nintendo for making a product not compatible with another of their own product? It's a Nintendo software and two Nintendo hardware... shouldn't it work?


Yes they have - Real's store. They made a competing music store and (subjectively, this is a pending court case and there are good arguments for both sides) Apple used their control over the iPod to prevent them competing with the iITMS.

As I said, Real hacked their way into a protection system. If anything Apple should counter-sue Real for breaching the DMCA. :cool:


Again:
Does Sony / Nintendo have a monopoly on games production?
Does Sony / Nintendo use the fact that they are the ONLY people in the world producing games to prevent any other manufacturer selling a games console? Does Sony / Nintendo have a monopoly in the console market?
Does Sony / Nintendo use their monopoly in the console market to prevent other developers from writing games?

They don't, and neither does Apple. There's plenty of music stores aside from the iTMS. It just happens that the iTMS has more users because other music stores suck.

There's also a lot of music players aside from the iPod. In fact, in numbers, I'm sure there's at least 10 times more music players models available than there is iPod models. They're just not selling because they suck. It's called free market.

Would you think I'm nuts if I were to sue Nintendo for not making Metroid Prime 2 for the Xbox? Would you think I'm nuts if I were to sue Microsoft for not making the Xbox compatible with Gamecube games?

Now:
Does Apple (with a 80-90% market share) have a monopoly in the portable music player market? Does Apple use that monopoly to prevent competitors to iTMS building online music stores?

Yes, Apple has near-monopoly. But they reached that monopoly by free market rules: better products = more marketshare (unlike Microsoft, who used monopolistic practices rules: monopoly = forced marketshare).

Apple isn't doing anything to prevent competitors from making competing online music stores. In fact, there's a lot of those. They just can't compete because they suck.

applebum
Feb 9, 2006, 09:54 AM
1) Does Apple (with a 80-90% market share) have a monopoly in the portable music player market?

2)Does Apple use that monopoly to prevent competitors to iTMS building online music stores?

1 - Define the market. I am sorry, but I don't believe that the market is just legal music downloads. The ITMS is not just competing with Real, MSN, Yahoo, and Napster - it is also competing with every brick and mortar store, every online store that ships out a CD, and also P2P. Suddenly Apple's market share is nowhere near 80-90%. Also, a monopoly is not just about marketshare, it is about the amount of competition available for the product. If it were simply about marketshare, then suddenly any company that made a popular product (with over 50% of the marketshare) would become a monopoly. That would punish companies for making quality, reliable, popular products.

2 - Absolutely NOT. They didn't prevent Real from having an online store (Rhapsody is still available). They simply said we won't allow your music to play on the iPod.

AlmostThere
Feb 9, 2006, 11:23 AM
Neither is the iTMS nor iPod. There's plenty of other options out there (in fact there's more choice in both music players and music stores by not choosing iTMS and iPod. Monopolies are not illegal. It's what you do with it and how you got it (like Microsoft, Windows and their licensing... "you don't sell any Linux computers or we stop selling Windows to you").

LOL. You do not have to have 100.00% market share to be treated like a monopoly! Would you support Microsoft in being innocent of abusing their "monopoly" position? IIRC, Apple never actually managed to make it 0% market share :rolleyes:

iPods and iTMS are simply being treated as having reached a position where monopoly abuse is possible. That has been accepted by the judge in the original article.
How about exclusive titles agreements?
Sony not monopoly. Judge says Apple monopoly. Rules different.
And I am not sure of your context ...
My quote : What have Sony done to prevent other games developers writing and selling games for the PS2?
Your quote : How about exclusive titles agreements? You can only make the game for PS2
How are Sony preventing games developers from developing for the PS2 by offering them PS2 exclusive agreements? Not clear on the logic there ...
As I said, Real hacked their way into a protection system. If anything Apple should counter-sue Real for breaching the DMCA. :cool:

This might be one of Apple's arguments. If they could sue, why haven't they? Real reversed engineered for compatibility and did not create a product that removed copy-protection - nothing has been shown to be illegal. Apple then changed the technology. Apple may proffer technological reasons for changing the DRM schema. Real may offer competitive reasons. The undeniable result of this was that Real was prevented from selling music online for the iPod.

That is something the court case is for.
They don't, and neither does Apple. There's plenty of music stores aside from the iTMS. It just happens that the iTMS has more users because other music stores suck.
No, you cannot say that is why iTMS is most popular. No other online music store gives access to the iPod. For arguments sake, I propose that the iTMS store is rubbish and it is only the most popular because of the success of the iPod. Show me wrong.
There's also a lot of music players aside from the iPod. In fact, in numbers, I'm sure there's at least 10 times more music players models available than there is iPod models. They're just not selling because they suck.
I agree. So what? No one is disputing this.
Yes, Apple has near-monopoly. But they reached that monopoly by free market rules: better products = more marketshare (unlike Microsoft, who used monopolistic practices rules: monopoly = forced marketshare).
Really? How have they achieved the dominance they have in online stores through free competition? Again, I propose that Apple only achieved dominance in the online store by preventing anyone else accessing the iPod. Why is that not "forced market share"?
Apple isn't doing anything to prevent competitors from making competing online music stores. In fact, there's a lot of those. They just can't compete because they suck.
Yes they are! How are they competing if they cannot sell to 80-90% of the users? You simply cannot say that other online stores suck unless they have access to the iPod market on an equal footing. Return to the earlier software analogy, if I wrote a media player for Windows, are you really saying that if MS patched Windows to break my player and ensure that WMP remained dominant, that would be fair competition :yikes: MS would be preventing me from reaching 90% of computer users by using their OS dominance.

1 - Define the market. I am sorry, but I don't believe that the market is just legal music downloads. The ITMS is not just competing with Real, MSN, Yahoo, and Napster - it is also competing with every brick and mortar store, every online store that ships out a CD, and also P2P. Suddenly Apple's market share is nowhere near 80-90%. Also, a monopoly is not just about marketshare, it is about the amount of competition available for the product. If it were simply about marketshare, then suddenly any company that made a popular product (with over 50% of the marketshare) would become a monopoly. That would punish companies for making quality, reliable, popular products.

2 - Absolutely NOT. They didn't prevent Real from having an online store (Rhapsody is still available). They simply said we won't allow your music to play on the iPod.

1. iTMS and brick and mortar CD stores overlap but they also differ. The differences have been done to death - price, time to delivery, availability of tracks etc. And how does iTMS compete with Real, Napster etc. ? This is one of the problems - they do not sell the same product! (For "market" - how about "substitutable" product. I can buy A from X, Y or Z and have the same product. I can choose my vendor according to whoever offers me the best service / support / whatever)

2. And Real would say they did. iTMS was faced with genuine competition in the online market, i.e. someone who could sell to iPod users, Apple simply couldn't hack it because (see note above) iTMS is rubbish, so they utilised their control over the iPod to beat down the competition.

Yvan256
Feb 9, 2006, 12:22 PM
Edit: entire reply deleted by myself because AlmostThere's arguments are nonsense (IMHO).

The argument here is the DRM not being compatible between platforms (FairPlay and "Plays for Sure"), not the fact that the content is audio files.

The same arguments can be said of computers and game consoles (i.e. Metroid Prime 2 can only be played on Gamecube), but I'd bet he'd say "it's different".

Not to mention the fact that no music is exclusive to online music stores (all music is available on CDs, the exclusivities are between online stores, if any).

benpatient
Feb 9, 2006, 01:13 PM
your last statement is flatly incorrect.

there are currently several pages of "Exclusive" albums, tracks, and EPs on the ITMS.

Just pop it open and search for "exclusive" then narrow the search to "Music" and either "Album" or "Song" and see what I mean. Tons and tons of them. Tons.

Yvan256
Feb 9, 2006, 03:15 PM
your last statement is flatly incorrect.

there are currently several pages of "Exclusive" albums, tracks, and EPs on the ITMS.

Just pop it open and search for "exclusive" then narrow the search to "Music" and either "Album" or "Song" and see what I mean. Tons and tons of them. Tons.

Well, I didn't know about that. In fact I find the music labels silly (dumb?) to put exclusive music on online stores. The marketshare of people who have access to iTMS (iPod or not, since you can burn your tunes to CD) is much, much lower than people who have access to brick-and-mortar music stores. :confused:

For iTMS, you need either OS X or Windows XP/2000, internet access (high-speed almost required), a credit card/iTMS gift card/PayPal account and a minimum understanding of how the whole thing works.

For CDs, you need cash and nothing else (CDs are sold everywhere). You can even buy CDs on-line (Amazon, etc). Your CD player can be pratically anything, from your car audio system, a Playstation 1, a DVD player or a computer with a CD-ROM with any operating system.

In any case, a lawsuit about monopoly abuse should be about things such as exclusive music, not the iTMS+iPod combo or FairPlay licensing. If you want that particular song you have no choice but to use the iTMS.

AlmostThere
Feb 9, 2006, 06:25 PM
Edit: entire reply deleted by myself because AlmostThere's arguments are nonsense (IMHO).

Just give me an example of a direct competitor to iTMS.

All I am asking is for some evidence that iTMS stands on its own two feet as a store, that its success is down to "free market rules", offering a better product at a better price with a better service rather than riding up on the coat tails of the iPod.

California
Feb 9, 2006, 07:14 PM
Just give me an example of a direct competitor to iTMS.

All I am asking is for some evidence that iTMS stands on its own two feet as a store, that its success is down to "free market rules", offering a better product at a better price with a better service rather than riding up on the coat tails of the iPod.

No YOU create for us a better competitor to iTunes/iPod.

What are you talking about?

WHY is it the government's business to make everything "FAIR" as if the marketplace is a kids' playground?

WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT? iTunes/iPod is not illegal.

The government does not exist to level the marketplace playing field -- God help us when the government bureaucrats try to get into the marketplace!!!

Bureaucrats and politicians and appointed judges don't know to make money -- all they know to do is spend our tax dollars!!!

YOU MAKE A BETTER iTUNES AND IPOD THAN APPLE

and then you can complain about monopoly if Apple tries to "FIX" the marketplace to lock you out.

APPLE HAS NOT DONE THIS.

BobVB
Feb 9, 2006, 07:35 PM
The undeniable result of this was that Real was prevented from selling music online for the iPod.

Hmmm the iPod plays a number of formats, the situation is that Real isn't releasing them in the other iPod compatible formats. There is no need for locking DRM especially now with the watermarking technology that's been developed. They choose to DRM their products, their choice.

And, of course iTMS is perfectly fine to use with just a computer. I don't even own an iPod anymore but I still buy plenty of music. And an iPod works fine with mp3s the most ubiquitous audio format on the planet.

Both products work just fine without the other - that people WANT to use them them together is just great marketing, not a monopoly.

Yvan256
Feb 9, 2006, 08:16 PM
Just give me an example of a direct competitor to iTMS.

All I am asking is for some evidence that iTMS stands on its own two feet as a store, that its success is down to "free market rules", offering a better product at a better price with a better service rather than riding up on the coat tails of the iPod.

The iTMS (or iTunes without the iTMS part, for that matter) doesn't require an iPod to function. If fact, if you ask me, the iPod itself sucks, it's only good because of iTunes (iTMS or not). Remove iTunes and the iPod becomes as useless as all other players, aside from the scrollwheel.

As for direct competitors to iTMS, there's plenty: Napster, Wal-Mart, Rhapsody, etc (can't name more because I don't care about other online stores).

As far as free market rules: iTMS offers higher quality (AAC is better than WMA or MP3, at least at 128kbps), less restrictive DRM (compared to WMA), a good easy-to-use interface (integrated player/store) and constant pricing (at least for single tracks).

EricNau
Feb 9, 2006, 08:20 PM
Last time I checked I could buy music from any online music store and import it into iTunes, and then onto my iPod.

Austin.xstone
Feb 9, 2006, 11:41 PM
I realy dont this case going ANYWHERE. I realy wish people would just grow up and stop trying to get money out of other people :eek:

AlmostThere
Feb 10, 2006, 02:08 AM
The iTMS (or iTunes without the iTMS part, for that matter) doesn't require an iPod to function. If fact, if you ask me, the iPod itself sucks, it's only good because of iTunes (iTMS or not). Remove iTunes and the iPod becomes as useless as all other players, aside from the scrollwheel.

As for direct competitors to iTMS, there's plenty: Napster, Wal-Mart, Rhapsody, etc (can't name more because I don't care about other online stores).

As far as free market rules: iTMS offers higher quality (AAC is better than WMA or MP3, at least at 128kbps), less restrictive DRM (compared to WMA), a good easy-to-use interface (integrated player/store) and constant pricing (at least for single tracks).

But the judge has already dealt with this:

"Judge Ware rejected Apple's argument that the tying allegations must fail because people can buy the iPod and iTunes files separately."

None of the stores you mentioned sell music in an iPod compatible format. If you cannot offer music online for the iPod, you are not a competitor to iTMS!

California
Feb 10, 2006, 03:21 AM
But the judge has already dealt with this:

"Judge Ware rejected Apple's argument that the tying allegations must fail because people can buy the iPod and iTunes files separately."


The Judge has not "already dealt with" anything, the trial has not yet even begun.

And as it seems to be over the Judge's head that Apple has NOT created and taken advantage of an unfair monoply, it seems that the Judge is already WRONG.

AlmostThere
Feb 10, 2006, 08:13 AM
The Judge has not "already dealt with" anything, the trial has not yet even begun.
What part of "rejected Apple's argument" do you not understand? If Apple could make a convincing argument that the two are genuinely separate, he would have dismissed the proceedings.

And as it seems to be over the Judge's head that Apple has NOT created and taken advantage of an unfair monoply, it seems that the Judge is already WRONG.

No doubt Judge Ware would be of the opinion that it is over your head that Apple qualify for investigation into anti-competitive behaviour.

California
Feb 10, 2006, 11:23 AM
What part of "rejected Apple's argument" do you not understand? If Apple could make a convincing argument that the two are genuinely separate, he would have dismissed the proceedings.



No doubt Judge Ware would be of the opinion that it is over your head that Apple qualify for investigation into anti-competitive behaviour.

In this country, hearing a case that goes forward to trial is much different than making a judgement upon it.

I certainly hope that Apple makes a scouring investigation into all of Judge Ware's investments and financial contacts. What you and no one else seems to want to deal with is that Slattery WORKED FOR MICROSOFT ON THEIR LEGAL TEAM. This is a set up case.

dialectician
Feb 10, 2006, 01:34 PM
Yes, Apple has near-monopoly. But they reached that monopoly by free market rules: better products = more marketshare (unlike Microsoft, who used monopolistic practices rules: monopoly = forced marketshare).

Apple isn't doing anything to prevent competitors from making competing online music stores. In fact, there's a lot of those. They just can't compete because they suck.

The point is not whether the monopoly was reached by free market rules (which, incidentally, every monopoly claims it did), but that Apple is not providing the tracks in an open platform format.

I don't understand why all of you are going ballistic about this. Apple should offer its tracks in an open platform format (which doesn't mean they can't additionally offer a proprietary format). What's the problem?

Apple makes great products so let these products speak for themselves. If people would like to buy music from Apple and then use a crappy MP3 player to listen to it, let them have it their way. Same goes for those who want to use Windows on their Macs!

BobVB
Feb 10, 2006, 01:40 PM
I don't understand why all of you are going ballistic about this. Apple should offer its tracks in an open platform format (which doesn't mean they can't additionally offer a proprietary format). What's the problem?

exactly what would this 'open platform' format be? ALL of the other stores use proprietary formatting too.

gnasher729
Feb 13, 2006, 10:48 AM
What part of "rejected Apple's argument" do you not understand? If Apple could make a convincing argument that the two are genuinely separate, he would have dismissed the proceedings.

No doubt Judge Ware would be of the opinion that it is over your head that Apple qualify for investigation into anti-competitive behaviour.

Guys, it is completely pointless to discuss a legal case based on some clueless report, without reading the court papers. However, you should note that the first phase for any such court case is that a plaintiff makes claims (however found or unfounded, rational or crazy), and the judge decides whether these claims, if they were all true, would mean that the defendent has done something wrong.

The only way for a court case to fail at this hurdle is if the plaintiff is really stupid; if none of his claims specify anything that Apple isn't allowed to do. For example, if I tried to sue Apple for selling the iPod Nano only in black and white and not in my favorite colour, then the judge would say that even if everything I say is correct (which it is), there is just no case to answer. In the case we have here, if everything the plaintiff said were true (which it isn't because he is completely bonkers), then Apple _would_ have to answer. At this stage, the judge makes no attempt at all to check for the validity of the claims, just whether the claims as they are would mean something bad has been done. So this goes to court.

The next stage would be if the case can be decided on undisputed facts alone. So if the plaintiff said "Apple did X, and X is illegal" and Apple says, "Yes, we did X, but it is perfectly legal" then the judge can take X as a fact and decide according to the law. That would finish the case, either through dismissal (if Apple is right) or conviction (if Apple is wrong). Again, at this stage the judge doesn't check the quality of anyone's arguments, he just takes for true what both sides agree on. At this stage, as long as there is the slightest possibility of doubt, the case goes on.

The next stage is where evidence will be sought, and that is where it gets interesting.