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MacRumors
Jul 5, 2007, 06:11 PM
http://www.macrumors.com/images/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com)

Macworld.co.uk confirms (http://www.macworld.co.uk/ipod-itunes/news/index.cfm?newsid=18459) an earlier rumor that Universal would not be renewing their long term contract with Apple fur iTunes music distribution.
"Universal Music Group has decided not to renew its long-term agreement for Apple’s iTunes service. Universal Music Group will now market its music to iTunes in an ‘at will’ capacity, as it does with its other retail partners."
Macworld.co.uk suggests that this Universal may be interested in offering exclusive music to other online services besides iTunes, in an attempt to reduce Apple's control of online music distribution.

Article Link (http://www.macrumors.com/2007/07/05/universal-confirms-itunes-contract-change/)



Metatron
Jul 5, 2007, 06:13 PM
prepare to revolt....

What horrible news. Universal is really just hurting themselves in this one.

LaMerVipere
Jul 5, 2007, 06:13 PM
No biggie. iTunes customers won't notice a difference.

yagran
Jul 5, 2007, 06:13 PM
this is really bad, i hope its not the start of a slippery slope for iTunes :(

dartzorichalcos
Jul 5, 2007, 06:15 PM
Looks like a bad move for Universal.

Phobophobia
Jul 5, 2007, 06:18 PM
These are the same guys who get paid for each Zune sold...

QCassidy352
Jul 5, 2007, 06:19 PM
meh, guess I won't be buying Universal music. I like itunes more than I like Universal.

KindredMAC
Jul 5, 2007, 06:24 PM
LADIES AND GENTLEMEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

START YOUR PIRATING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

.... idiots.

See Hand....
See Feeding...
See Biting...

...again, idiots.....

Maclicious
Jul 5, 2007, 06:25 PM
For a regular iTunes/iPod user, it's like universal saying, "Ok, pirate our music because we're not going to make it available to you legally any longer in your preferred/known venue."

Wow, stupid.

emptyCup
Jul 5, 2007, 06:26 PM
It will be an interesting, 750 million dollar experiment.

200paul
Jul 5, 2007, 06:27 PM
These are the same guys who get paid for each Zune sold...

Yeah - I don't get that at all. Why do they get a dime? How arrogant can they be? They should concentrate on finding and nurturing good artists with longevity in their careers instead of these short lived rappers and bubblegum pop stars. Basic business practice - good product at a fair price = sales and profit.

Rojo
Jul 5, 2007, 06:28 PM
Macworld.co.uk suggests that this Universal may be interested in offering exclusive music to other online services besides iTunes, in an attempt to reduce Apple's control of online music distribution.

So wait -- Universal's only goal in doing this is to reduce Apple's control of online music distribution? I don't understand -- they don't like the fact that Apple does it so well? That Apple's so successful? That Apple probably brings Universal a lot of money? Something doesn't make sense here...

Oh I see -- I just read the article. They're not happy with Apple's fixed pricing. They're greedy and want flexible pricing. I get it now. Greed makes more sense, I guess. :rolleyes:

Well if they really want to go that route, that's their business. Something tells me they'll be shooting themselves in the foot, though. I'd hate to be the poor bands who end up getting exclusives on some other online music service, and then not doing as well because no one wants to bother using that service...

Teddy's
Jul 5, 2007, 06:29 PM
Now under the premise that "lawyers" and other greedy entities are behind this. Read "mo' money." Make a choice to say your opinion:

1- their lost
2- let's see where is this going...
3- ...

Or maybe this is too big to see it from a micro level: our little iPods and corners where we buy music on iTunes.

About the "iTunes dominance" term, it seems to be a more tabloid title or something from Reuters.

NeXTCube030
Jul 5, 2007, 06:30 PM
this is really bad, i hope its not the start of a slippery slope for iTunes :(

From an apple point of view, the concern is whether or not the path from music store to Ipod is 'easier' than music store to [zune|sandisk|rio|whatever] If the competition make it easier to download stuff to a non iPod than to an iPod, thats where it will hurt.

But if I can buy something, load it into iTunes, and upload it into my iPhone,
I can live with the competition, and I think ITMS can too.


What [I hope] Universal will find out, is that if you don't place your product where everyone is going to buy it, you ain't gonna sell it. Do I want to buy music from 2 stores, one with 65% of my music,[ 50% of my movies, and all my podcasts], and the other site that has 30% of my music... I'll probably stop shopping at the Universal store before I stop shopping at iTMS... and do what I do now... dash down to the pawn shop/used book/CD store and look for the music I can't find on ITMS.

What would be great if is all music labels build compatible stores that can be front ended by a single application that can peruse site contents ala pricegrabber.com and use a single credential/purse to buy stuff from... Heck Apple should offer to build that for free like Amazon Shopping... and link it up against ITMS... let the labels build their own libraries, their own price points, and let apple aggregate the shopping cart/experience. Then everyone gets what they want. Of course, if Universal charges $5.00 for the next U2 single, the market will be up in arms, but under their agreements, it's probably 'legal' (weasely, but legal... wait, those are just synonyms).

matthutch
Jul 5, 2007, 06:30 PM
I wonder what impact (if any) this would have on their catalogue currently available through iTunes.

Oh well I guess we will find out shortly.

The General
Jul 5, 2007, 06:31 PM
I think you guys are all confused ...

Correct me if I'm wrong, but the way I understand it - Universal is changing the contract so that they are no longer exclusive with iTunes. iTunes will still be selling Universal's music ...

aria505
Jul 5, 2007, 06:31 PM
It will be an interesting, 750 million dollar experiment.

Yes, I'm somewhat excited to watch what happens with this. You know Universal will be tracking the change in their sales.

I wonder if any of Apple's changes in their demands sparked this or if Universal is really just wanting to challenge Apple's power.

kbmb
Jul 5, 2007, 06:32 PM
As a consumer I wouldn't be worried. Just think...the first Artist or new album Universal decides not to put on iTunes....that artist won't stand for it.

All this is is Universal wanting more money...and it's ridiculous.

-Kevin

MacJoe
Jul 5, 2007, 06:33 PM
iTunes has renewed my interest in commercial music. There have been instances where I actually bought a CD that was only partially offerred on iTunes. If Universal pulls out, then it's a very safe bet I won't be purchasing their artists' works any more.

Teddy's
Jul 5, 2007, 06:36 PM
This could mean that music from key artists may not be made available through Apple's service.

UGHHH Scary!!!

/sarcasm

unconcious
Jul 5, 2007, 06:37 PM
this a perfect example of how retarded, greedy, moronic managment drives an industry down under and at the same time will promote pirating music.:eek:

zgh1999
Jul 5, 2007, 06:45 PM
The old guys at Universal just don't get it.

They do not grasp the fact that Apple is doing them a big favor by offering their music through iTunes, which Apple earns little or no profit from.

If Universal pulls out of iTunes, the consumers will likely do what they need to do to get the music -- by pirating Universal's music.

No one is going to sign up with Microsoft and Zune or Nokia or whatever just to get Universal's music.

Consumers are one click away from pirating -- and Apple and iTunes are the only thing keeping them away from doing just that.

Never bet against the winning team at Apple.

orkle
Jul 5, 2007, 06:47 PM
It never ceases to amaze me how many people think they know what they're talking about when they clearly don't.

This is about preventing another monopoly, which is never good for business. If things stay the way they are Apple will end up with too much power. Regardless of who it is, a monopoly is a bad thing.

Just because it's Apple everybody here seems to think it'd be OK!

zgh1999
Jul 5, 2007, 06:50 PM
It never ceases to amaze me how many people think they know what they're talking about when they clearly don't.

This is about preventing another monopoly, which is never good for business. If things stay the way they are Apple will end up with too much power. Regardless of who it is, a monopoly is a bad thing.

Just because it's Apple everybody here seems to think it'd be OK!

You are the one without a clue regarding what you talk about.

Do you know how many percent of the music on digital players are downloaded through iTunes?

Less than 10%. Apple/iTunes are far from being the monopoly. They merely offer a way for consumers to get their music legally.

Yankees 4 Life
Jul 5, 2007, 06:51 PM
I think you guys are all confused ...

Correct me if I'm wrong, but the way I understand it - Universal is changing the contract so that they are no longer exclusive with iTunes. iTunes will still be selling Universal's music ...

Hey i have no idea what tha fuss is about. They are just redoing the contract. Its not like they are eliminating all of their music off of iTunes. However it is a stupid idea to end a long term deal.

travishill
Jul 5, 2007, 06:53 PM
So Universal now works with iTunes the same way they work with every other online music store.

No longer special terms, yeah that's too bad, but really not that big of a deal.

Diatribe
Jul 5, 2007, 06:56 PM
Lol. How is this a bad move for Universal? Even Walmart only has a short-term contract with the labels...

bigmc6000
Jul 5, 2007, 06:58 PM
It never ceases to amaze me how many people think they know what they're talking about when they clearly don't.

This is about preventing another monopoly, which is never good for business. If things stay the way they are Apple will end up with too much power. Regardless of who it is, a monopoly is a bad thing.

Just because it's Apple everybody here seems to think it'd be OK!

It's the faith in Steve Jobs that makes people OK with it. He could have bent to the RIAA's demands and charged 1.49 or more and allow variable prices. The monopoly isn't a bad thing - a monopoly in the hands of greedy people is... Steve and Apple have shown through their actions they aren't that concerned about making money through the sales of songs through iTunes. Let's not forget here that Apple is still selling music for less than the Big Box guys - even with the new DRM free versions.

So long as it's not a manipulative monopoly *cough* MS *cough* the consumer will be just fine - look at Satellite Radio. Combining Sirius and XM is the best thing for consumers, hands down...

netdoc66
Jul 5, 2007, 06:59 PM
Hope the strategy works for Uni but I'm sure it most likely will fail. Might be fun to watch them crawl back :)

OhEsTen
Jul 5, 2007, 07:03 PM
It never ceases to amaze me how many people think they know what they're talking about when they clearly don't.

This is about preventing another monopoly, which is never good for business. If things stay the way they are Apple will end up with too much power. Regardless of who it is, a monopoly is a bad thing.

Just because it's Apple everybody here seems to think it'd be OK!

While thats what the record companies claim (that they are trying to prevent another monopoly) you have sorely misplaced your trust if you believe them.

This is about greed pure and simple. If Apple "played ball" with these greedy ***k's then all the labels would be singing their praises. The problem is Apple is adamant about fixed pricing. The labels want more money for "popular" songs. They already make more money off of their music being sold through iTS than with physical cd's for reasons that have been exhaustively stated in many of these forums. Apple refuses to move to variable pricing. So in this case Apple's "monopoly" in this area is actually good for us the consumer. Not that Apple's monopoly can't turn bad too - but they've shown where their interest is - keeping customers coming back to the iTS.

If these labels were really worried about another monopoly - why would they be supporting Microsoft? The fact is, they were hoping Microsoft would crush Apple in the music place the way they did in the OS marketplace. Had Microsoft succeeded - they would be getting their "Pirate Tax", variable pricing and Orwellian DRM. The problem is Apple isn't the same company it was in the 90's and neither is Microsoft. I laugh at how these worthless dinosaurs are grasping at straws here. I hope they all die a slow painful death.

sblasl
Jul 5, 2007, 07:13 PM
Apple sent an "Open Letter" to the industry requesting DRM free content. The ball was put into the industry's court. If they want to break the stranglehold of Apple, remove the DRM restriction.

It never ceases to amaze me how many people think they know what they're talking about when they clearly don't.

This is about preventing another monopoly, which is never good for business. If things stay the way they are Apple will end up with too much power. Regardless of who it is, a monopoly is a bad thing.

Just because it's Apple everybody here seems to think it'd be OK!

Abstract
Jul 5, 2007, 07:14 PM
These are the same guys who get paid for each Zune sold...

So they made....what......$17.32 off the deal?

gkarris
Jul 5, 2007, 07:14 PM
The only non-retarded post on this thread.

Do you people even read the article before posting? :rolleyes:

Yes...


However, it is thought that Universal wants to be able to offer some music by some bands exclusively through other online music services in its attempt to reduce Apple's control of the online business.

This could mean that music from key artists may not be made available through Apple's service.

It'll probably be the Zune Store. MS wants to take over that business and Universal is getting $1 per Zune sold.

Nice going, all you iPod pirates!!! :p

synth3tik
Jul 5, 2007, 07:16 PM
This in itself is not that bad, but it will open the flood gates making even legal downloads harder.

zioxide
Jul 5, 2007, 07:17 PM
People buy music?

Earendil
Jul 5, 2007, 07:18 PM
It never ceases to amaze me how many people think they know what they're talking about when they clearly don't.

Take you for example...

This is about preventing another monopoly, which is never good for business. If things stay the way they are Apple will end up with too much power.

Apple, last I checked, had 76% of online music sales. This number was not, last time I checked, increasing. So if you think 76% is a monopoly, great, but it's getting lower just fine on it's own.

There are also two other retail stores selling more music than Apple, and no one is calling them a monopoly, aye?

Regardless of who it is, a monopoly is a bad thing.

Accept for a few small little details. First off, Universal isn't trying to break Apple "monopoly" so they can LOWER prices for the consumer. Universal wants to INCREASE prices for the consumer.

Universal doesn't want to make music more FREELY available to the consumer so that we have our choice where to make purchases, they want to LIMIT our choice in places to buy their music.

Now universal may not do either of those two things. But if they don't, they aren't really trying to "break" Apple's "monopoly".

I swear to this entire board, and you can quote me, I will physically eat my own shoe if Universal, with this new found control, lowers prices for the consumer without raising any prices (or screwing the artists). Please quote me on this.

Just because it's Apple everybody here seems to think it'd be OK!

Most of us here are okay with Apple making a buck. Most of us here trust Apple to not get money hungry to the detriment of the consumer. I trust the record labels FAR less than I trust Apple. Call me an idiot fanboy if you will, but that's my stance, and I'm sticking to it until I see both companies turn 180 degrees.

~Tyler

Wigletbill
Jul 5, 2007, 07:20 PM
And then the record companies bitch and moan about losing money. Blech.

sblasl
Jul 5, 2007, 07:21 PM
Becareful here, It is alleged that Apple is getting a piece of the action from AT&T for every iPhone activation.

These are the same guys who get paid for each Zune sold...

Wigletbill
Jul 5, 2007, 07:21 PM
Yes...



Universal is getting $1 per Zune sold.



... And they need all those hundreds of dollars.

orkle
Jul 5, 2007, 07:22 PM
Last time I checked Apple make a LOT more money than even the biggest music corporation. Many of you are very misguided, which is fine. I couldn't care less.

Good night!

BlackLilyNinja
Jul 5, 2007, 07:24 PM
Artists take your mark...

get set..

BREAK CONTRACT!!

orkle
Jul 5, 2007, 07:24 PM
Most of us here are okay with Apple making a buck. Most of us here trust Apple to not get money hungry to the detriment of the consumer. I trust the record labels FAR less than I trust Apple. Call me an idiot fanboy if you will, but that's my stance, and I'm sticking to it until I see both companies turn 180 degrees.

Amazing response. My multi billion dollar corporation is better than yours. Lord.

gkarris
Jul 5, 2007, 07:25 PM
... And they need all those hundreds of dollars.

I thought it was a little over a grand... :p

lucas
Jul 5, 2007, 07:26 PM
dont like it? boycott universal, dont buy anything they sell and show them who has the power in the company/customer relationship

gkarris
Jul 5, 2007, 07:28 PM
Becareful here, It is alleged that Apple is getting a piece of the action from AT&T for every iPhone activation.

"Welcome to iTunes 7.4, you will need to activate your iPod - the
$3/month charge goes to Universal Music, please input your credit card number..."

csimmons
Jul 5, 2007, 07:29 PM
It's the faith in Steve Jobs that makes people OK with it. He could have bent to the RIAA's demands and charged 1.49 or more and allow variable prices. The monopoly isn't a bad thing - a monopoly in the hands of greedy people is... Steve and Apple have shown through their actions they aren't that concerned about making money through the sales of songs through iTunes. Let's not forget here that Apple is still selling music for less than the Big Box guys - even with the new DRM free versions.

So long as it's not a manipulative monopoly *cough* MS *cough* the consumer will be just fine - look at Satellite Radio. Combining Sirius and XM is the best thing for consumers, hands down...

What's more interesting for me is how EMI's sales are since releasing portions of their catalog to iTunes without DRM. Preliminary reports are very good. I think once the other majors get a whiff of how EMI is doing, they'll jump on board. Even Universal. They're stupid, but not that stupid.:eek:

poopooplatter
Jul 5, 2007, 07:33 PM
Yes...



It'll probably be the Zune Store. MS wants to take over that business and Universal is getting $1 per Zune sold.

Nice going, all you iPod pirates!!! :p

This could mean that music from key artists may not be made available through Apple's service...

:rolleyes:

thirdwaver
Jul 5, 2007, 07:35 PM
Each time the record companies get into the news, I'm astonished by their stupidity and general "not getting it" attitude. It's actually getting funny now.

Sean

itgoesforfun
Jul 5, 2007, 07:37 PM
UMG is very successful as a CD distribution company. Wmart controls the retail end. Apple is the leading efile retailer for music and, in the current business environment, in distribution. UMG is just allowing itself not to get tied into a longterm deal while the distribution and retail end of efiles is still taking shape.

I really enjoy the greed comments. Do you think Apple is not greedy?!

ogee
Jul 5, 2007, 07:38 PM
Anyone know if the recent Apple v Apple settlement now allows Apple Inc to be a music label in there own right. This could be an ideal opportunity for the 2 Apples to work together to get major artists on iTunes exclusively, as well as expand the options to disenchanted Universal artists.


Humm.

Earendil
Jul 5, 2007, 07:39 PM
Amazing response. My multi billion dollar corporation is better than yours. Lord.

I can only assume you are making fun of me.
This decision only gets any kind of response if we care about the company, and what they do for the consumer. How I view what they do for the consumer (which is me) and how I see that future has a lot to do with how much I trust them. That goes for all of us here.

Exactly why are you here making fun of people on a forum for keeping up with corporate news that may effect future products they intend to buy? Go make fun of someone else... like a reflection.

csimmons
Jul 5, 2007, 07:39 PM
Last time I checked Apple make a LOT more money than even the biggest music corporation. Many of you are very misguided, which is fine. I couldn't care less.

Good night!

Music is not Apple's CORE business.

In fact, Music isn't really Universal's core business either; film and TV is. CD sales is a very small part of their music revenue; the majority comes from publishing. Of the big four major record labels, only EMI has music as it's core business, and they're actually doing better than Sony / BMG, Universal and Warner. Ironically, it's EMI who will probably benefit the most from close cooperation with Apple. Universal will find out soon enough.

Earendil
Jul 5, 2007, 07:41 PM
UMG is very successful as a CD distribution company. Wmart controls the retail end. Apple is the leading efile retailer for music and, in the current business environment, in distribution. UMG is just allowing itself not to get tied into a longterm deal while the distribution and retail end of efiles is still taking shape.

I really enjoy the greed comments. Do you think Apple is not greedy?!

I do think they are greedy. I think Universal is more so.
Thus, if power has to be with either of them, I'd rather it be with Apple.

But perhaps my trust is misplaced and Apple is greedier and cares less for the consumer than Universal does. I'm opening to being enlightened.

macnews
Jul 5, 2007, 07:42 PM
The not signing a new long term contract by Universal doesn't mean they will not be selling on iTMS. I doubt even if it did, the end result would hurt iTMS. People with iPods are just fine downloading their music and while the lack of Universal artists could lower overall downloads and/or sales for iTMS, people are not going to stop using it altogether. They have a lot of money and time put in to loading up their iPods (either with music purchased from iTMS or ripped off already bought CD's), not to mention the cost of the actual iPod.

I think Universal is testing the waters to see other reactions and the potential money gained or lost. If more labels refuse long term contracts it could open things up for the labels. If they lose money they may be back and vice versa if they make more money.

As to the entire "break Apple's monopoly" argument, this is just crazy. Universal never tried or cried to the Walmart monopoly (they are the biggest retail music seller). Also, Universal could really care less about variable pricing. What they really want - and why they care about the Apple monopoly - are subscriptions. Myself or my family (wife and kids) don't buy on average more than $10 a month in music. Maybe one or two months a year we will spend $10-$20 but that is it. What the big labels want are more people renting their music on a monthly basis in electronic form. This increases the overall money spent while at the same time forcing people like myself to revert back to the "by the cd for only one song" habit. I'm not going there again and I doubt many other people will either.

ogee
Jul 5, 2007, 07:46 PM
What the big labels want are more people renting their music on a monthly basis in electronic form. This increases the overall money spent while at the same time forcing people like myself to revert back to the "by the cd for only one song" habit. I'm not going there again and I doubt many other people will either.

I agree. I hadnt bought more than 10 CDs since 1990! Since I got my wife her first iPod, we have bought about 90 odd, a lot through iTunes. I doubt I would go back to hard CD purchase again.

itgoesforfun
Jul 5, 2007, 07:49 PM
[QUOTE=csimmons;3879326]Music is not Apple's CORE business.

In fact, Music isn't really Universal's core business either; film and TV is.

You're mixing up two different companies. Universal Music is still under Vivendi and Film & TV is NBC/Universal<GE. Universal Music also has quite a nice business under it's umbrella.

thirdwaver
Jul 5, 2007, 07:50 PM
It never ceases to amaze me how many people think they know what they're talking about when they clearly don't.

This is about preventing another monopoly, which is never good for business. If things stay the way they are Apple will end up with too much power. Regardless of who it is, a monopoly is a bad thing.

Just because it's Apple everybody here seems to think it'd be OK!

I couldn't pass this up without responding. I get so tired of hearing that the iTunes music store is a monopoly. It's true that if you purchase songs from the ITMS, you must play them on an iPod, but the iPod plays many file formats so there's nothing stopping you from buying your music in MP3 form, or *gasp* on CD and ripping it yourself.

<begin tortured analogy>

Think of it this way: You own a car (an iPod) which can use four different kinds of gas. You stop at a gas station (ITMS) that only sells gas for your particular car. Neither your car or the gas station represent a monopoly. A monopoly is when your car only uses one brand of gasoline that just happens to be made by the company that makes the car, they sell tons of cars and put one of their gas stations on every corner.

</end tortured analogy>

So you see, sir, it is YOU who do not know what you're talking about (in this case at least).

Earendil
Jul 5, 2007, 07:51 PM
Last time I checked Apple make a LOT more money than even the biggest music corporation. Many of you are very misguided, which is fine. I couldn't care less.

Good night!

Of curse, UMG only does music. While Apple does music and other things. That said...

Net Income
Universal Music Group 480 million
Apple 1.7 billion
Vivendi (UMG's parent company) 4 billion

~Tyler



source: wikipedia (http://www.wikipedia.com)

the vj
Jul 5, 2007, 08:01 PM
Remember that Universal may have a dela with CD printing companies that can be affected and probably these people gave them a even better deal, the same with record stores and teh entire distribution market despite other traditional companies who are getting affected by the iTunes distribution.

Is like gas companies, is not imaginable that after so long there is not a fuel that won't hurt the environment but so many industries depending on oil and fosil fules make it impossible to make the switch.

Record companies have been working with traditional chanels of distribution for more than 100 years and Apple is changing that.

macadam212
Jul 5, 2007, 08:06 PM
I love the Apple community, just found this site, its a place where you can add your signature in protest of Universal's stupid decision. :D


http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/FREE_MUSIC/index.html

rjwill246
Jul 5, 2007, 08:09 PM
Last time I checked Apple make a LOT more money than even the biggest music corporation. Many of you are very misguided, which is fine. I couldn't care less.

Good night!

What the hell has that to do with the price of eggs? Good grief! You are mixing one part of the business with another... that is illogical.

psychofreak
Jul 5, 2007, 08:10 PM
I love the Apple community, just found this site, its a place where you can add your signature in protest of Universal's stupid decision. :D


http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/FREE_MUSIC/index.html

Has any online petition EVER done anything?

macnews
Jul 5, 2007, 08:14 PM
Has any online petition EVER done anything?

Honestly, the is a DAMN good question. Serious. Anyone know the answer?

macadam212
Jul 5, 2007, 08:15 PM
No but it made me feel better...well kinda :)

inkswamp
Jul 5, 2007, 08:16 PM
I think the mp3 player/music download market is comparable right now to the PC market back in the mid-80s when companies like Microsoft started to realize that the real center of power was going to be in the production of software, not hardware. Back then, everyone thought the real power was in the production of hardware and that software was sort of an incidental thing, but Microsoft (and Apple, to be fair) proved that wrong.

In this case, the bet was between music downloads and CDs. The music industry bet the farm on CDs and sort of begudgingly went along with Apple as it went forward with the download/mp3 player side (and did so with more zeal and smarts than anyone else--not unlike Microsoft pursuing software 20+ years ago.)

The bottom line is that I think Universal knows they are on the losing side of this and are just making lots of noise and flailing about in an effort to secure as much power in this new download ecosystem that clearly isn't going away any time soon--and neither is Apple and iTunes. My bet is that they will learn that they are doing themselves more harm than good and will come crawling back. Comparing it to the hardware/software dichotomy of the 80s, it's a little like Dell refusing to work with Microsoft in an effort to reduce MS's power. They would hurt themselves more than they would hurt Microsoft. Univeral is about to do the same, IMHO.

rdrr
Jul 5, 2007, 08:16 PM
Kinda reminds me of...

Step 1: Remove catalog from iTunes.
Step 2: ....
Step 3: Profit!

:D

shen
Jul 5, 2007, 08:19 PM
i know i am not that bright, but....

"Universal may be interested in offering exclusive music to other online services besides iTunes"

ummm, what other service is that exactly?

iris_failsafe
Jul 5, 2007, 08:21 PM
Like FSJ would say: some frigtards want to shoot themselves in the foot

MikeTheC
Jul 5, 2007, 08:24 PM
Universal Music can go **** themselves if they want, I suppose, but this is probably either nothing more than posturing or maybe standardization of business practices.

Not that I was buying music from them anyway...

nxent
Jul 5, 2007, 08:31 PM
expletive

aussie.damo
Jul 5, 2007, 08:48 PM
I couldn't pass this up without responding. I get so tired of hearing that the iTunes music store is a monopoly. It's true that if you purchase songs from the ITMS, you must play them on an iPod, but the iPod plays many file formats so there's nothing stopping you from buying your music in MP3 form, or *gasp* on CD and ripping it yourself.

<begin tortured analogy>

Think of it this way: You own a car (an iPod) which can use four different kinds of gas. You stop at a gas station (ITMS) that only sells gas for your particular car. Neither your car or the gas station represent a monopoly. A monopoly is when your car only uses one brand of gasoline that just happens to be made by the company that makes the car, they sell tons of cars and put one of their gas stations on every corner.

</end tortured analogy>

So you see, sir, it is YOU who do not know what you're talking about (in this case at least).

So by your logic, because my PC can run a number of Operating Systems (Vista, Linux, BSD), Microsoft is not a monopoly?

Perhaps you should check your definition of monopoly before making such tortured analogies.

Oh and so I don't get accused of arguing one way or the other, I don't think that iTMS is a monopoly.

spooks99
Jul 5, 2007, 08:53 PM
The only non-retarded post on this thread.

Do you people even read the article before posting? :rolleyes:

So far that's all it's doing, but as the article suggests, "Universal may be interested in offering exclusive music to other online services." Exclusive to someone else = not on itunes. I think this is what people are reacting to--the indication that this is just a first step to transfer Universal's catalog somewhere else.

Rocketman
Jul 5, 2007, 08:54 PM
Apple is not a "monopolist" in the music space. It is an innovator attracting fad and long-term business. Unlike Microsoft, Standard Oil, and other declared monopolists who had a vertical channel monopoly, Apple is competing against Napster and allmp3. They are competing with a paid service against FREE services and WINNING. (NOTE: with a slim to none profit margin and delivering all value added to copyright holders)

If the music distributors break that, even to a degree, they will be cutting their own balls off. I predict that will indeed happen, due to the egotistical behavior they employ.

Rocketman

KindredMAC
Jul 5, 2007, 09:19 PM
So far that's all it's doing, but as the article suggests, "Universal may be interested in offering exclusive music to other online services." Exclusive to someone else = not on itunes. I think this is what people are reacting to--the indication that this is just a first step to transfer Universal's catalog somewhere else.

You hit the nail on the head. I'm looking farther down the road than right now.

Universal's terms are totally opening up for non-iTunes releases at any point.

Besides Universal would be crazy to take the catalog off of iTunes, the #3 top music outlet. They aren't going to do that, but this could easily turn into Target vs Wal-Mart when one offers a special edition of something that the other does not.

cliffjumper68
Jul 5, 2007, 09:27 PM
http://www.macrumors.com/images/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com)

Macworld.co.uk confirms (http://www.macworld.co.uk/ipod-itunes/news/index.cfm?newsid=18459) an earlier rumor that Universal would not be renewing their long term contract with Apple fur iTunes music distribution.

Macworld.co.uk suggests that this Universal may be interested in offering exclusive music to other online services besides iTunes, in an attempt to reduce Apple's control of online music distribution.

Article Link (http://www.macrumors.com/2007/07/05/universal-confirms-itunes-contract-change/)

Universal is only hurting themselves. I think emi is much better at meeting the needs of the consumer.

TheBobcat
Jul 5, 2007, 09:37 PM
Ugh, I still can't believe we haven't eliminated the need for these labels yet. It will happen eventually, where they will just squat on their old catalogs for royalties and re-releases in different formats.

The world we live in no longer needs these companies, or at least only four major ones. The smell of death is all over them and they know it. However, what baffles me is that as their business model becomes more painfully obvious to be obsolete, they still claw their nails to hang onto control, instead of at least attempting to adapt to survive in the era of digital distribution.

BKKbill
Jul 5, 2007, 09:53 PM
If this is about greed then it's going to be very interesting to see how it goes. The thing about money is that it works something like water and always flows to the point of least resistance. :apple:

EagerDragon
Jul 5, 2007, 09:57 PM
Well unless Universal was very smart, Apple may not be under obligation to promote the Universal Artists. They may only have to promote the ones they have a contract with. Universal looses in that case.

This IMHO is a stupid move, with CD sales declining heavily, Universal should be trying to get as much of their music forward and in front of iTune customers as possible, not playing all those games.

twoodcc
Jul 5, 2007, 10:00 PM
very bad news.

weev
Jul 5, 2007, 10:03 PM
LADIES AND GENTLEMEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

START YOUR PIRATING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

.... idiots.

See Hand....
See Feeding...
See Biting...

...again, idiots.....

A torrent we will go, a torrent we will go, high-ho-a-derrio, a torrent we will go...

whatever
Jul 5, 2007, 10:05 PM
This is really funny.

The music industry is dying before our eyes.

Both Walmart and Best Buy (the number 1 and 2 music resellers in the country) are both reducing the shelf space giving to music and Apple's iTunes (the third top music reseller) is actually trying to increase their virtual shelf space.

So let me see if I get this. Universal is going to try to play hardball with Apple, when they're the only player in town expanding and growing their music offering. Sounds really smart to me. I wonder if that's why the music industry is dying.

zgh1999
Jul 5, 2007, 10:06 PM
Yes...



It'll probably be the Zune Store. MS wants to take over that business and Universal is getting $1 per Zune sold.

Nice going, all you iPod pirates!!! :p

Heheh. $1 for each Zune sold = $700k?

Hahaha... That is pocket change. Hell, Apple just sold more than 700K iPhones in a few days.

You are right though -- something is not right about Universal. Although they claim they have merely refused to sign long term exclusive deal with iTunes, I think what this amounts to is that Universal is planning to go exclusively to the dark side, MS.

dicklacara
Jul 5, 2007, 10:07 PM
this a perfect example of how retarded, greedy, moronic managment drives an industry down under and at the same time will promote pirating music.:eek:

Edgar Bronfman (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edgar_Bronfman,_Jr.) hates/envies SJ!

Object-X
Jul 5, 2007, 10:08 PM
Exactly how does signing an exclusive contract with another download service benefit Universal or any artist? With Apple owning the market with it's store and almost 80% of digital music players (non-compatible because of DRM), Universal would be screwing themselves by limiting a hot artist to some other service and insisting on a DRM. I just don't get that.

So, lets say U2 releases something and Universal is only going to sell it through Microsoft's Urge. No one with an iPod can listen to it. How many users does Microsoft have vrs Apple? So much for that release. Are they that arrogant to think they own some library title that will cause people who own an iPod to buy something else? :confused:

mlegrand
Jul 5, 2007, 10:09 PM
Isn't the Universal music still available on allofmp3.com (or one of its occurrences)?

zgh1999
Jul 5, 2007, 10:11 PM
This is really funny.

The music industry is dying before our eyes.

Both Walmart and Best Buy (the number 1 and 2 music resellers in the country) are both reducing the shelf space giving to music and Apple's iTunes (the third top music reseller) is actually trying to increase their virtual shelf space.

So let me see if I get this. Universal is going to try to play hardball with Apple, when they're the only player in town expanding and growing their music offering. Sounds really smart to me. I wonder if that's why the music industry is dying.

Exactly.

It is very laughable that Universal would pull a stunt like this on Apple.

iTunes is about the thing right now working in the music industry's favor. It generates income for them. Apple is not earning much from iTunes. Essentially, iTunes is a low-margin service that Apple sets up as a favor to the music industry and consumers of iPod, to complement its iPod products.

Think of all the money that Apple is turning over to the labels.

I am willing to bet that Universal will move to Microsoft/Zune or Nokia, and that will turn sour, and Universal will end up severely screwing itself, and will in the end come running back to Apple/iTunes. I hope Steve Jobs give them the dressing down then.

ErikGrim
Jul 5, 2007, 10:12 PM
Just makes me even more happy that my fiancé's band (http://phobos.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewArtist?id=212673240) is with EMI. EMI seems to be the only label who gets this new-fandangled internet-thing.

BKKbill
Jul 5, 2007, 10:15 PM
Primary characteristics of a monopoly

* Single Seller: For a pure monopoly to take place, only one company can be selling the good or service. A company can have a monopoly on certain goods and services but not on others.
* Significant Barrier of Entry: If a company has a monopoly on a good or service, it becomes prohibitively difficult for other firms to enter the industry and provide the same good or service.
* No close substitutes: Monopoly is not merely the state of having control over a product; it also means that there are no close substitutes available that fill the same function as the monopolized good.
* Price maker: Because a single firm controls the total supply in a pure monopoly, it is able to exert a significant degree of control over the price by changing the quantity supplied.
:)

KindredMAC
Jul 5, 2007, 10:24 PM
Heheh. $1 for each Zune sold = $700k?

Hahaha... That is pocket change. Hell, Apple just sold more than 700K iPhones in a few days.


That's frickin hilarious when you put those two numbers together and think about the time frame for both.

Anybody know how many iPods Apple sold the first week back in the day? This has got to be bigger than ANYTHING before. Also, how long to get to 1 million downloads did it take iTunes? My aging brain can't retain that kitchy info anymore ;o)

rockosmodurnlif
Jul 5, 2007, 10:28 PM
On the whole, a much better thread than the first one on this news.

On the iTunes monopoly issue, I have to say I remember hearing that of every legal track downloaded some 70% of them come from iTunes. 70% is a big number. iTunes is the number 3 music retailer on the basis of this 70%.

But what does that 70% do? Well not much. They can't leverage that 70% to get what they want from Universal, not with Universal is looking long term. I'm sure they've noticed digital sales are increasing at the expense of retail sales. So they are doing what they can to reduce the share of iTunes digital music marketshare so that they aren't in bad negotiating positions with iTunes in the future. They are using what leverage they have now.

Universal loses nothing, nor does iTunes (Apple) at this moment with this new contract it seems. For if Universal wants an album to sell then they will distribute it as widely as possible but if they have a popular artist with a new album, then they can use the artist to make money by promoting a rival download site (or iTunes) for exclusive downloads.

Some one mentioned the word manipulative monopoly which is redundant. Monopolies are never good for the market place because they control the market.


It is very laughable that Universal would pull a stunt like this on Apple.

iTunes is about the thing right now working in the music industry's favor. It generates income for them. Apple is not earning much from iTunes. Essentially, iTunes is a low-margin service that Apple sets up as a favor to the music industry and consumers of iPod, to complement its iPod products.

It is laughable that you think that a multi-billion dollar company does a "favor" for another multi-billion dollar company. And as far as I know the iTunes store is no "favor" for me. I still pay to get songs. Cheaply and quickly sure but Apple isn't going out of its way and losing money so I can use iTunes. If iTunes turned no profit or worse hurt the bottomline, I'm sure it would get the axe.

studiomusic
Jul 5, 2007, 10:36 PM
Well I hope that Apple doesn't give them the same payout % as other Majors that do have a long term agreement... otherwise, why have a long term agreement?
I would think that you should get a better profit for signing an agreement... like cell phones... 2 years and you get a free phone, no contract, you buy the phone and pay more per minute (that was, until the iphone).

JGowan
Jul 5, 2007, 11:14 PM
I think this all stems from Apple telling Universal "No. We won't give you a dollar per iPod" and the embarrassment it cost them for the snub, if you can call it that. I thought it was ridiculous to even ask for it in the first place.

iTunes Music Store helps to sell iPods. Period. The iPod is the big seller here and Apple will never give into this type "business tactic"/extortion.

Bottomline, people like to buy new music. If they're bored and they want to download something new for their iPod for the next day, they're to find something on Apple's store. This actually hurts no one but Universal. It's all good for the other music companies and of course, Apple.

Also, I don't see it hurting the really successful acts. If you really want the new U2 album and it's not on iTunes, you'll just go buy the physical disc and it'll get on your iPod that way.

Of course, this is all a big bluff and Universal is still on iTunes -- and I bet they never go anywhere.

Diatribe
Jul 5, 2007, 11:23 PM
Since when has MR become so infested with Apple zealots? The reasonable, not overreacting, actually thinking people are clearly in the minority. Sad.

This is not bad for Universal, they are merely doing what they do with every other retailer out there. Apple lost a little bit of their online music monopoly but that is a good thing.
No need to boycot anyone, all take a deep breath and go back to your lives. Nothing to see here.

corywoolf
Jul 5, 2007, 11:29 PM
Just to smack Universal in the face, I hope Apple releases iTMS To Go soon. If you could download music over EDGE and Movies over WIFI it would boost the sales. Think of all those times when you wanted to listen to a song spur of the moment, but forgot all about it by the time you got home and on your computer. Now if millions of people are making these purchases all the time, that could easily almost double the sales. I know it's not a new idea, but Apple should really speed things up and at least make music available for purchase on the iPhone.

AidenShaw
Jul 5, 2007, 11:36 PM
So wait -- Universal's only goal in doing this is to reduce Apple's control of online music distribution? I don't understand -- they don't like the fact that Apple does it so well? That Apple's so successful?

What part of "monopoly" don't you understand?

Anytime that any single company gets 50% or more of the market means that choice/price/freedom are lessened.

Whether it's Apple in music, Microsoft in desktop operating systems, or Google in online search/apps/advertising - it's bad for the end user.

Choice is good for the consumer, an overwhelming presence in any market limits choice.

JGowan
Jul 5, 2007, 11:42 PM
What part of "monopoly" don't you understand?

Anytime that any single company gets 50% or more of the market means that choice/price/freedom are lessened.

Whether it's Apple in music, Microsoft in desktop operating systems, or Google in online search/apps/advertising - it's bad for the end user.

Choice is good for the consumer, an overwhelming presence in any market limits choice.What are you talking about? There's been the Sony store, the Wal-Mart store, the Zune store -- on and on... they just don't know how to do it. They can't make it work. We have more choice than ever before. Tunes are still $1 each and videos and movies are now available and at a very good price. Apple actually gives a damn about the consumer and seems to actually want to step up on our behalf and say NO, YOU'RE NOT GOING TO GIVE LESS TO OUR CUSTOMERS. THEY MATTER TOO MUCH TO US. I'm glad there's someone there to take up for the consumer.

I won't talk about M$ or GOOGLE but as far as Apple is concerned, the consumers/end users are definitely the winners in 2007. I seriously don't know what you're talking about.

PLUS -- Unless you're a Windows user, you would know that anytime ANYONE else comes up with a music store, they completely SHUT the MAC USERS OUT! Most, if not all music players are Windows-only. Thank God Apple gives a damn about us. We have only one choise 99.99% of the time and it's the very best, by a mile.

glowingstar
Jul 5, 2007, 11:54 PM
man...what did they had to go n do that fur..... ;)

Goldenbear
Jul 6, 2007, 12:00 AM
...If iTunes turned no profit or worse hurt the bottomline, I'm sure it would get the axe.

When iTunes first launched, Apple publicly stated that it was simply hoping to break even (or something to that effect). The point of the iTunes Store was to sell ipods. It wasn't until much later that it started to make a (small) profit. These days, it's probably making a decent (but not large) profit, since the vast majority of the $.99 you pay goes to the music labels.

So no, I don't think Apple will be axing iTunes if it fails to make a profit. Not unless there's a drastic change in their business model.

JGowan
Jul 6, 2007, 12:01 AM
Anybody know how many iPods Apple sold the first week back in the day? This has got to be bigger than ANYTHING before. Also, how long to get to 1 million downloads did it take iTunes? My aging brain can't retain that kitchy info anymore ;o)I Wiki'd a couple of pages for you. Very interesting reading there...

ITUNES MARKETSHARE & MILESTONES (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ITunes_Store#Market_share_and_milestones)

IPOD SALES (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IPOD#Sales)

princigalli
Jul 6, 2007, 12:03 AM
I hate universal. I don't think anybody likes them. They are arrogant, old fashioned, and their music always sounds the same.

If they had a choice we'd be using music CDs for ever and only on CD players they licence. They probably think that every citizen should devote them tax money because of our individual potential to hear free music.

I never wish bad to anyone, but if that company were to go I'd go and toast with friends, and I think I'd find a good number of them that would toast with me.

gehrbox
Jul 6, 2007, 12:45 AM
Universal is positioning itself to gain control of it's products sale price. It's a strategic move. CD sales are down and continue to decline year after year. The writing is on the wall. Digital is the future for music and video.

Currently 15% (give or take a couple % depending on where you look) of their music sales are through Apple. If the trend keeps up a larger and larger share of their revenue will have to funnel through Apple. Digital music sales are not as lucrative as CD sales. Piracy is and will continue to eat into their pockets. As a result their revenue will fall. If a publicly traded company fails to grow it ceases to attract investment and will eventually fail. Apples price fixing is going to put a bigger and bigger dent in their revenue. They are rolling the dice in hopes that they can either force Apple to be more negotiable over the sale prices or generate more competition in the digital distribution channel to regain control over the sales of their product.

Apple may be king of the hill in the digital distribution, but they had a revenue in 2006 of only $4.37B. Universal was a little higher at $5.7B (2005). However the french company that owns Universal raked in $27.2B (2006). Deep pockets and the desire to stop the bleeding will win the day for Universal.

That is if the buyers don't revolt and refuse to buy they're products from anywhere except iTunes. If you can't get the music you want at one location you will be awfully tempted to buy it elsewhere. Piracy will have to be kept in check, so expect a lot more lawsuits to stem the tide if the buyers turn to illegal means to get their music.

Ugg
Jul 6, 2007, 12:57 AM
What part of "monopoly" don't you understand?

Anytime that any single company gets 50% or more of the market means that choice/price/freedom are lessened.

Whether it's Apple in music, Microsoft in desktop operating systems, or Google in online search/apps/advertising - it's bad for the end user.

Choice is good for the consumer, an overwhelming presence in any market limits choice.

You've got a good point. One of the reasons for the success of iTMS is the fact that the music is locked down to the iPod.

Hmmm, who insisted on the monopoly status I wonder? I'm sure that Apple wanted it that way in the beginning but in all reality, it's the musicos that forced it. Now, they've found themselves a victim of their own icdiocy. The real pirates out there are the idiots at Universal who will probably lock down their music even more and create impossibly complex user agreeements for each second of music that is sold by them.

The only hope for a revival in music sales is to lessen restrictions and make all music playable on all machines. Apple's reluctant to license its technology to all the fly by nighters out there and that's understandable. Charge more for drm free music at a higher bit rate and realize that the world has changed dramatically.

The day of the mega album or mega tour is mostly over. Ticketmaster, musician greed, record company greed, etc, etc, have mostly made music a regrettable experience.

It's not Apple's monopoly that's the problem, it's the record companies' refusal to see the writing on the wall.

pieman02
Jul 6, 2007, 01:34 AM
It never ceases to amaze me how many people think they know what they're talking about when they clearly don't.

This is about preventing another monopoly, which is never good for business. If things stay the way they are Apple will end up with too much power. Regardless of who it is, a monopoly is a bad thing.

Just because it's Apple everybody here seems to think it'd be OK!

This is not true...as someone else said, it does all depend on who has the monopoly - look at the way M$ would be running this:

1) Low prices initially
2) Competeitors cant afford to compete and give up
3) Jack up prices now that they are the only option

Look at Apple:

1) All songs one low price
2) Competition is still out there (healthy for business)
3) Now they are dominating to a certain extent, and still can't be forced, let alone make the decision to raise prices...

Not only will Apple never have a true monopoly (cause there will always be Wal-Mart etc etc, no matter how much less they sell), but look at city utilities as an example of monopoly - does your neighbor get his trash picked up by a different company? No, because it is the cheapest, most efficient way to do things...

And why is everyone saying that Universal is terminating their contract or something? The old contract is up, and not they want to sell other special things at other music stores...its not gonna help Apple's competition any probably so oh well its just greed :rolleyes: longpost.com/universal_sucks

MikeTheC
Jul 6, 2007, 01:50 AM
This thread is proof you just can't please everybody, no matter what you do or how you do it.

calculus
Jul 6, 2007, 01:53 AM
This could mean that music from key artists may not be made available through Apple's service...

:rolleyes:

Let's hope so - anything to get rid of dreadful rubbish like U2.

LoganT
Jul 6, 2007, 01:58 AM
Let's hope so - anything to get rid of dreadful rubbish like U2.

I wonder what Bono thinks of this.

csimmons
Jul 6, 2007, 02:43 AM
The statement said that Universal titles won't be EXCLUSIVELY available on iTunes. Exclusive = iTunes only. That does not mean they won't be available eventually.

Could it be that Universal wants to help prop up those online stores where they stand to theoretically gain the most (Zune Marketplace)? If so, that would be indeed the dumbest thing Universal could do, especially considering the effect that the iPhone will have on music downloads. Any sane music boss would do everything they could to stay in Apple's good graces.

Schtumple
Jul 6, 2007, 02:53 AM
Universal (and most record labels tbh) are like bloody screaming toddlers, someone needs to kick them in the face

It seems that all the record labels can do atm is get everything wrong, the day when these massive companies finally admit defeat and integrate themselves with the current technology (100%) is a day when i might buy music from them.

fjguerra
Jul 6, 2007, 03:01 AM
Bad move from Universal! They are just punishing themselves. Let's just show them, that customers have the power and not they. Let's not buy Universal music for a couple of months and let's see if they don't change their mind! It's unbelievable, that they do whatever they want with costumers, when we are those who give them money. iTunes is just the best and if they are leading the market it's because of their own merits.

gnasher729
Jul 6, 2007, 03:33 AM
Edgar Bronfman (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edgar_Bronfman,_Jr.) hates/envies SJ!

Steve Jobs became a multi-millionaire by starting a successful computer company from a garage (by now he is actually past the multi-millionaire stage). Edgar Bronfman is approaching the problem from the other side: He is on the way to becoming a multi-millionaire by starting with a huge inheritance and wasting most of it. :D

Papajohn56
Jul 6, 2007, 03:37 AM
I don't get why Universal even cares about the market share of digital download as long as they're making money.

surferfromuk
Jul 6, 2007, 03:38 AM
The simple truth of the matter is that they're all terrified of Steve Jobs.

He is the one thing they're not and that they can never be - an idealist, a visionary, a benevolent dictator, a CEO throwback to the pot-smoking, acid dropping hippie idealism of the sixties. A Man whose single stated aim is to change the world...

...but worse, far worse than all that - he is a self-made man who started from nothing, with nothing and rose to become one of the greatest world changing men that has ever lived - and not in some creepy way - but in the most incredible life enhancing way. Where he walks, the paths he clears,are where others follow - even Gates followed Jobs, even IBM followed Jobs, even Wozniak followed Jobs. Just one man!

What has this got to do with Universal you ask ?

It is fair to say that Steve Jobs is still a very self-driven individual, perhaps more so than ever, and quite simply they, (and all tech companies across the world for that matter), are all terrified for one major reason ;

THEY DO NOT EVEN REMOTELY KNOW WHAT HE'S GOING TO DO NEXT...

They can guess, speculate but that's all. They can't actually prepare for the SJ factor. They can only counter after Jobs has revealed his play...

And that is incredible...

Let's face it - it's taken Universal 5 years to figure out that 'one day all music will be bought online - if not only for eco-friendly reasons!'....

They're probably sat looking at Disney thinking - 'we're next'...

:)

gnasher729
Jul 6, 2007, 03:44 AM
Apple may be king of the hill in the digital distribution, but they had a revenue in 2006 of only $4.37B. Universal was a little higher at $5.7B (2005). However the french company that owns Universal raked in $27.2B (2006). Deep pockets and the desire to stop the bleeding will win the day for Universal.

finance.yahoo.com says Apple had $21.5bn in the last year. Slightly more than $4.37bn that you claimed. By the way, type "Vivendi debt" into Google. Vivendi has more debt than Apple has cash.

Vinnie_vw
Jul 6, 2007, 03:56 AM
Prepare your flames…

Well, I'm all for it. I hope that Universal leads other studios to do the same. Why? Because they still let the market decide where they sell their music. Right now, there isn't much of a choice, especially on the OSX-platform.

They have given Apple a lot of power right now, which has lead to the iTunes dominance, but also crazy iPod-sales…which in turn allowed them to develop the intel-Macs and the iPhone, both also cash-cows in the future. And these things, as long as Apple keeps innovating will continue to sell. iTunes has little to do with iPod sales, except make it convenient. Most people, I know, and who own an iPod, don't even shop there…because of a lack of DRM-free options.

But I would also like convenient subscription-services like Rapsody on my Mac. Where are they? I would also like cheaper tariffs for some of the classics, just like in record-stores. Where are they? And, of course, I want DRM-free music and I realise iTunes is one of the champions there.

The point is that iTunes seems to reign the market-space and drive out smaller alternatives, especially on the Mac-platform. And after letting it come to this "in-balance," a counter-pressure from content-providers is a good thing.

Taking out my aluminium umbrella now…

surferfromuk
Jul 6, 2007, 04:21 AM
. Right now, there isn't much of a choice, especially on the OSX-platform.

They have given Apple a lot of power right now,

But I would also like convenient subscription-services like Rapsody on my Mac.



1) Your getting a Porsche 911 for budget car money - why do you need second rate alternatives?
2) Apple created the market and therefore it's own power - it 'took' nothing and created a great complimentary eco-system and wonderful products. Apple just made it 'work'...
3) Hook me up to the drip...I want my music intravenously...I want to check 'in' every month to affirm my 30 day rights...
Let's not all rally around Universal for a 'worse deal' please...

I'm no big fan of monopolies but if it's not an Apple one you can be sure it'd be a Microsoft one - and we all know what that means...

rockosmodurnlif
Jul 6, 2007, 05:33 AM
The simple truth of the matter is that they're all terrified of Steve Jobs.

He is the one thing they're not and that they can never be - an idealist, a visionary, a benevolent dictator, a CEO throwback to the pot-smoking, acid dropping hippie idealism of the sixties. A Man whose single stated aim is to change the world...

...but worse, far worse than all that - he is a self-made man who started from nothing, with nothing and rose to become one of the greatest world changing men that has ever lived - and not in some creepy way - but in the most incredible life enhancing way. Where he walks, the paths he clears,are where others follow - even Gates followed Jobs, even IBM followed Jobs, even Wozniak followed Jobs. Just one man!

What has this got to do with Universal you ask ?

It is fair to say that Steve Jobs is still a very self-driven individual, perhaps more so than ever, and quite simply they, (and all tech companies across the world for that matter), are all terrified for one major reason ;

THEY DO NOT EVEN REMOTELY KNOW WHAT HE'S GOING TO DO NEXT...

They can guess, speculate but that's all. They can't actually prepare for the SJ factor. They can only counter after Jobs has revealed his play...

And that is incredible...

Let's face it - it's taken Universal 5 years to figure out that 'one day all music will be bought online - if not only for eco-friendly reasons!'....

They're probably sat looking at Disney thinking - 'we're next'...

:)

1) Your getting a Porsche 911 for budget car money - why do you need second rate alternatives?
2) Apple created the market and therefore it's own power - it 'took' nothing and created a great complimentary eco-system and wonderful products. Apple just made it 'work'...
3) Hook me up to the drip...I want my music intravenously...I want to check 'in' every month to affirm my 30 day rights...
Let's not all rally around Universal for a 'worse deal' please...

I'm no big fan of monopolies but if it's not an Apple one you can be sure it'd be a Microsoft one - and we all know what that means...

Someone walked into the Steve RDF and never walked out ...

Then again, maybe he likes it there.

Much Ado
Jul 6, 2007, 05:48 AM
Let's hope so - anything to get rid of dreadful rubbish like U2.

That was a pointless post.

eenu
Jul 6, 2007, 05:59 AM
Honestly, the is a DAMN good question. Serious. Anyone know the answer?

Yes, the UK governments online petitions section against road charging 6 months back.

Yankees 4 Life
Jul 6, 2007, 06:02 AM
Steve Jobs became a multi-millionaire by starting a successful computer company from a garage (by now he is actually past the multi-millionaire stage). Edgar Bronfman is approaching the problem from the other side: He is on the way to becoming a multi-millionaire by starting with a huge inheritance and wasting most of it. :D

hey man, steve is a multi billionaire

surferfromuk
Jul 6, 2007, 06:12 AM
Someone walked into the Steve RDF and never walked out ...

Then again, maybe he likes it there.

:)

In this day and age, in these times of uncertainty, confusion, change and anger and, dare I say it, in an age where we are bombarded by 'endless streams of empty, vacuous modern trash' all in eager pursuit of our minds and our wallets, it is a very pleasant, decent, noble and tranquil place to reside.

a cat *miaow*
Jul 6, 2007, 06:17 AM
It never ceases to amaze me how many people think they know what they're talking about when they clearly don't.

This is about preventing another monopoly, which is never good for business. If things stay the way they are Apple will end up with too much power. Regardless of who it is, a monopoly is a bad thing.

Just because it's Apple everybody here seems to think it'd be OK!

.. ahh good, i don't have to type that now :) I like my Apple but I sure wouldn't want them to have a monopoly in ANYTHING.. I think it's a wise decision not to sign away all your power wholesale to another company

rockosmodurnlif
Jul 6, 2007, 06:39 AM
:)

In this day and age, in these times of uncertainty, confusion, change and anger and, dare I say it, in an age where we are bombarded by 'endless streams of empty, vacuous modern trash' all in eager pursuit of our minds and our wallets, it is a very pleasant, decent, noble and tranquil place to reside.

You got that backwards, its our wallets and our minds.

whatever
Jul 6, 2007, 06:44 AM
What part of "monopoly" don't you understand?

Anytime that any single company gets 50% or more of the market means that choice/price/freedom are lessened.

Whether it's Apple in music, Microsoft in desktop operating systems, or Google in online search/apps/advertising - it's bad for the end user.

Choice is good for the consumer, an overwhelming presence in any market limits choice.
What you don't understand is that controlling one channel of distribution does not make a monopoly.

If iTunes was the only way to buy music, then yes they would be a monopoly, but as long as there are other methods they can not be considered on.

Do you consider Amazon.com a monopoly too?

MacBram
Jul 6, 2007, 06:45 AM
Prepare your flames…

Well, I'm all for it. I hope that Universal leads other studios to do the same. Why? Because they still let the market decide where they sell their music. Right now, there isn't much of a choice, especially on the OSX-platform.

They have given Apple a lot of power right now, which has lead to the iTunes dominance, but also crazy iPod-sales…which in turn allowed them to develop the intel-Macs and the iPhone, both also cash-cows in the future. And these things, as long as Apple keeps innovating will continue to sell. iTunes has little to do with iPod sales, except make it convenient. Most people, I know, and who own an iPod, don't even shop there…because of a lack of DRM-free options.

But I would also like convenient subscription-services like Rapsody on my Mac. Where are they? I would also like cheaper tariffs for some of the classics, just like in record-stores. Where are they? And, of course, I want DRM-free music and I realise iTunes is one of the champions there.

The point is that iTunes seems to reign the market-space and drive out smaller alternatives, especially on the Mac-platform. And after letting it come to this "in-balance," a counter-pressure from content-providers is a good thing.

Taking out my aluminium umbrella now…

Actually, your post (although you prepare for flaming) is a bit of breath of fresh air in one way, : "as long as Apple keeps innovating". Wow, I wonder if that has anything to do with Apple's position and the popularity of its products? And the "iTunes having little to do with iPod sales?" Maybe there is something about the iPod that people like; maybe it's not because the only way people can listen to Universal's music is to buy one. You think? I do see your point about wanting to see more choice on the Mac platfor - but I think this has less to do with Apple "locking" anyone out than with the fact that no-one is innovating and making a simple, user-friendly system like Apple that is catching on and being successful.

So, no flame on you, just trying to figure out the logic of all the detractors in general...

One day it's "Apple is a big bad monopoly because of the iTunes-iPod 'lock down'" (I just read that again a few posts back).
I understand from some reading and common sense that:
1) iTunes is not required to use your iPod (apparently very few iPod users "fill" their iPods to any significant degree with music bought on iTunes.
2) an iPod isn't required to buy and listen to music on iTunes (I have bought on iTunes but do not own an iPod though I wish I did). Where's the lock-down? This is covered in one of the latest posts on RoughlyDrafted.

Next day: "Apple is deceptive and has pulled a fast-one on the Record Labels à la MS with IBM"; and "Apple isn't interested in the consumer and it's messages and intentions about DRM-free music is something sinister."

However, again, I am still trying to follow the logic, because along with a third criticism many try to make you say 3) "they [Universal] still let the market decide where they sell their music." As though, again, Apple customers and the music-listening public is somehow trapped by Apple. Most music on iPods comes from CD's.

But, as far as digital sales go, problem is, as has been said countless times: sure, buy it from someone else, anyone else, and be restricted as to HOW you can listen to it - because at the moment, it seems there is either Apple, or MS/Record Label DRM and formats that have been shown to be proprietary in every way, every way you look at it, every day of the week. All these other happily competing companies (if it weren't for Apple) might as well be one vendor, too (guess who?).

Somehow Apple + iTunes + iPod + AAC + MP3/4 + WAV + AIFF + free podcasts + your CD's = proprietary and locked down; while Record Labels + MS + excessive DRM + WindowsMedia + PlaysForSure + plus MS victim companies + crap players that nobody wants to buy = Open and Free and liberating. :rolleyes:

JMax1
Jul 6, 2007, 06:53 AM
I don't get it- whats the point of a "long term contract" if they are goint to back out of it?

Genius Dude
Jul 6, 2007, 07:33 AM
It's funny how Apple (a computer company) came up with a solution to help reduced online music piracy, that the music industry or an other retail chain could come up with. Now they are complaining that Apple has too much control. They are not taking control, the mass of people supporting them are putting them in control!

Your loss Universal - Good luck using other online music stores



www.netdealsetc.com

Digitalclips
Jul 6, 2007, 07:36 AM
Universal (and most record labels tbh) are like bloody screaming toddlers, someone needs to kick them in the face


Yikes! Is that what you do to screaming toddlers? No wonder they are bloody!

Here is my thought on this issue: Someone somewhere has talked Universal into something that requires them to alter the contract with Apple. I wonder who that could be?

(Hint: would take a company willing to burn / loose billions of $ to try and take Apple's share away and has a boss who monkey dances)

Yankees 4 Life
Jul 6, 2007, 07:42 AM
lets hope for universal in the next couple of weeks to sign a long term deal after they realize no one shops on the zune marketplace and that if you give out DRM free songs, they can be played on any music player...

Cygnus311
Jul 6, 2007, 07:51 AM
"UMG's record labels have many of the world's biggest artists [1] including The Killers, McFly, Shania Twain, Bon Jovi, Elton John, Method Man, Tupac Shakur, Aaliyah, Jay-Z, Mariah Carey, t.A.T.u., Eminem, Dr. Dre, Diana Ross, Reba McEntire, Luciano Pavarotti, U2, Kanye West, Rihanna, Bone Thugs-N-Harmony and 50 Cent. UMG owns one of the largest music publishing businesses of the world, the Universal Music Publishing Group." - Wikipedia

So we're losing a bunch of c-rap. Gosh darn. :rolleyes:

Much Ado
Jul 6, 2007, 08:01 AM
Surely if this was really about preventing a monopoly, Universal would have set up a DRM-free iTunes scheme like the one Apple have started with EMI.

But, of course, people forget that actually, iTunes poses little monopolistic threat and this whole situation is driven by one thing: Greed.

Go on. Brand me an Apple-loving fanboy who doesn't see sense. Tell me i'm wrong to think that Universal are only after more money. Tell me i need to get my head out of the clouds.

Flame away, boys.

MA.

Porchland
Jul 6, 2007, 08:25 AM
"UMG's record labels have many of the world's biggest artists [1] including The Killers, McFly, Shania Twain, Bon Jovi, Elton John, Method Man, Tupac Shakur, Aaliyah, Jay-Z, Mariah Carey, t.A.T.u., Eminem, Dr. Dre, Diana Ross, Reba McEntire, Luciano Pavarotti, U2, Kanye West, Rihanna, Bone Thugs-N-Harmony and 50 Cent. UMG owns one of the largest music publishing businesses of the world, the Universal Music Publishing Group." - Wikipedia

So we're losing a bunch of c-rap. Gosh darn. :rolleyes:

If Universal threatens to pull its content off of iTunes Store, I don't think Apple will blink.

Universal has the attitude that it controls unique content and the only way for Apple to get it is to cave. But iTunes offers lots of other choices, and the other labels will jump into the vacuum and promote their own artists. on iTunes. Life goes on.

The Universal artists who get the lights turned out on them will have a bigger fit than iTunes Store customers who can't buy their albums. iTunes may still be small relative to total music sales, but it's a huge promotional platform.

You think U2 is going to be very excited about delivering an album to Universal that it knows won't be available on iTunes? Universal will cave or artists will leave. Simple as that.

Yankees 4 Life
Jul 6, 2007, 08:41 AM
hey to all that say universal can go to better alternatives, give me one alternative that plays its music on the ipod and doesnt have an interface which is complex and hard to use on the mac computer...

ReanimationLP
Jul 6, 2007, 08:56 AM
Universal seems to be a bunch of cocky morons.

First, they stick exclusively to HD-DVD, and now they're pulling songs off of iTunes.

They must really not like making money, or something.

I mean, Blu-Ray is gaining momentum and support, and iTunes is the 3rd largest music retailer in the United States. o.O

mentatbashar
Jul 6, 2007, 09:00 AM
If Universal threatens to pull its content off of iTunes Store, I don't think Apple will blink.

Universal has the attitude that it controls unique content and the only way for Apple to get it is to cave. But iTunes offers lots of other choices, and the other labels will jump into the vacuum and promote their own artists. on iTunes. Life goes on.


I agree. There are tons of other choices on the store and one thing that I like to do is poke around and see what sort of music I can find in there. Sometimes I find a few gems and sometimes I don't. :D

I have several pieces of paper on which I write songs that I hear through internet radio. Most of this stuff isn't on the store yet I've waited patiently. And guess what? One or two at a time pop up and I download them.

Perhaps my point is that there is plenty of other content in there and if we all wait patiently new, fresher content might fill some of the Universal holes.

BronxBri
Jul 6, 2007, 09:38 AM
Universal seems to be a bunch of cocky morons.

First, they stick exclusively to HD-DVD, and now they're pulling songs off of iTunes.

I mean, Blu-Ray is gaining momentum and support, and iTunes is the 3rd largest music retailer in the United States. o.O

I was wondering when somebody was going to touch on this. Seems like the microsoft-HD-DVD connection may be leading towards a Universal-Zune exclusives connection. Bottom line would seem to indicate that someone else was willing to throw a little money at universal and so they once again went running. Don't be surprised to see Universal releasing titles on Blu-Ray sometime next year, and continuing to release the big titles on iTunes.

katorga
Jul 6, 2007, 09:44 AM
Apple needs to get off their butts and create the management/contract/payment infrastructure to deal directly with artists. It needs to be as easy as signing the contracts, getting and account and uploading your material. Say $.24 per download direct to the artist.



It is time to cut the big middle men out of the picture.

calculus
Jul 6, 2007, 09:54 AM
Apple needs to get off their butts and create the management/contract/payment infrastructure to deal directly with artists.

I think you'll find that 'Apple' already does this.:)

GooMan
Jul 6, 2007, 10:02 AM
That was a pointless post.
So was yours (and mine). :cool:

KingofAwesome
Jul 6, 2007, 10:08 AM
Oh, Universal wants flexible pricing now? Well, I guess the range will be from $0 via P2P to... well, I can't listen to anything protected via MS, I hate Realplayer, and I won't buy an entire CD of music if I just want one song.... so I guess zero is flexible, right?

KingofAwesome
Jul 6, 2007, 10:19 AM
So we're losing a bunch of c-rap. Gosh darn. :rolleyes:

The issue is not whether or not you like rap, or for that matter any music on the label.

And, speaking as a professional musician, I'd be careful dismissing rap. There's a lot more to it than you realize, unless you've been in a studio with a competent engineer and producer. It's easy to say "it isn't music," but I only seem to hear that from people who can't play music or who have never tried to work in the genre.

hotinplaya
Jul 6, 2007, 10:19 AM
With Universals incredible successful deal with the Zune (royalties on every Zune sold), heck, they have probably made a couple of hundred dollars already, they feel they now have the power to impose this on Apple, get them inline where the market is going.

market is going, as in LimeWire

Do not get me wrong, I have 397 items, 159gb worth of iTune purchased content, mainly for our appleTV, but if Universal pulls out from iTunes, I will download everything I can, just to do it

ajhill
Jul 6, 2007, 10:25 AM
Let me get this straight. Universal is threatening to leave the fastest growing music service in the country, soon to be the #1 seller of music in America?

No one can be that stupid. With CD sales dropping like a rock (down 20% yoy) and online sales growing 50% yoy, this threat look like an empty threat.

Apple gave the masses an easy, affordable, convenient alternative to P2P. And guess what, it worked and saved the music business. And now the greedy bums at the music companies what more money from the company that saved their butts.

Personally I'm looking forward to the time when a majority of artists are selling direct to consumers, cutting out the greedy bums at the record companies that leech off the talent of others.

One only needs to look back a few decades to see some of the shameless contracts that record companies signed with early R&B and Jazz artists.

They are slime balls of the highest order, hopefully they are going to become a thing of the past. With iTunes, the hidden (social networking) power of playlists, and intelligent recommendations that are all built into the system good bands are going to find it easier than ever to make REAL money in the 21st century music business.

Here's hoping that the artists start making more money that the management and record company slimeballs.

Ugg
Jul 6, 2007, 10:34 AM
I'd be careful dismissing rap. There's a lot more to it than you realize, unless you've been in a studio with a competent engineer and producer. It's easy to say "it isn't music," but I only seem to hear that from people who can't play music or who have never tried to work in the genre.

Does it take a "competent engineer and producer" to make music? Absolutely not. What they do is polish the final product.

Rap is a niche market. You can defend it all you want but it's designed to appeal to a very narrow segment of the population. Just like country or R&B or any other genre. Some people, myself included, simply have no interest in it.

TitoC
Jul 6, 2007, 10:48 AM
I really think this is not about Universal being "concerned" about a monopoly in the business (I seriously doubt that if they were the monopoly, they would be this concerned) and more about being able to get more money for their music. It's funny how desperate these music Biz guys were back in the early days of the iPod and iTunes. They were on their death bed when Apple comes along and was able to breathe new life into them again. People were tired of the crap in selections that were out there and were resorting to downloading their music (albeit illegally) because there was no choice. You either had to buy the whole CD or nothing, even though they was only one or two decent songs on the damn thing. Then iTunes comes along, makes buying music online, fun, with choice and only $0.99 to boot! This of course doesn't sit too well with the "Big Boys" but they take it anyway considering the financial state they are in. The music industry gets a breath of fresh air in them again. Online music sales becomes a viable option and the music industry gets a second wind.

Now, we are a few years down the road and they want to see how far they can take it. And that's OK. There is nothing wrong with that. Let them see what's out there (not much really, but they can still look). I really do think (as many have posted on this thread) that they would rather have their music "rented out" (i.e. subscription-based) as opposed to people actually "buying" their music (iTunes). But what these guys don't get, is that the general public doesn't like this method. This (among many other things) is what makes iTunes so popular. People don't want to have to rent their music, only to have their entire library go away as soon as they stop paying their monthly subscription fees. I don't think so. While many go for this option, the majority do not.

I wonder if Universal actually DID get more money for their music, how much of it would ACTUALLY end up in the artists pocket, if any at all.

nemaslov
Jul 6, 2007, 10:58 AM
I think you'll find that 'Apple' already does this.:)

..and you should check out SNOCAP. They allow bands/artists to sell music directly. They are the ones who have the interface that all of the artists use to sell music on their MYSPACE sites. So far I think only MP3s but they soon will also have DRM free better quality if the artist and or label allows them.

The artist sets the selling price of a song. What ever they want, I think Snocap marks up 35-40 cents each. It is great for indie artists. They also have larger labels and are very artist friendly.

Check them out: http://www.snocap.com/

cliffjumper68
Jul 6, 2007, 11:00 AM
"UMG's record labels have many of the world's biggest artists [1] including The Killers, McFly, Shania Twain, Bon Jovi, Elton John, Method Man, Tupac Shakur, Aaliyah, Jay-Z, Mariah Carey, t.A.T.u., Eminem, Dr. Dre, Diana Ross, Reba McEntire, Luciano Pavarotti, U2, Kanye West, Rihanna, Bone Thugs-N-Harmony and 50 Cent. UMG owns one of the largest music publishing businesses of the world, the Universal Music Publishing Group." - Wikipedia

So we're losing a bunch of c-rap. Gosh darn. :rolleyes:

Those artists have alot to lose. It will be interesting if they stay with universal or switch to another more progressive label like emi. One can only hope :)

cliffjumper68
Jul 6, 2007, 11:03 AM
Do you think that the boss who monkey dances knows the difference between loose/lose? :rolleyes:

Same guy who said the iphone will not break even. I wonder if they have already with reports of over 1 million activations? Not the kind of business I would want to partner with long term.

starflyer
Jul 6, 2007, 11:12 AM
Universal must be taking its cues from Adobe.

From this thread:
http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=325676

I think Apple was playing a game of chicken with Adobe over the flash player licensing fee. Adobe wants a pretty penny for the player on embedded devices.

[Dramatic reenactment]
ADOBE: So, you want the flash player on your new phone, eh?
STEVE: Yep.
ADOBE: OK, that'll be 5% of retail sales.
STEVE: Ah, no
ADOBE: OK, 2.5%, bottom line.
STEVE: Look, we can release this device without the Flash player at all.
ADOBE: No way, we rule dynamic content on the web--if you want to give people the "real web" you've got to play ball.
STEVE [to the public]: Develop using Web 2.0, Flash Player will suck your battery so it's really better that you don't have FP. [applies RDF effect].
PUBLIC: [Buys 100,000 x ? phones in the first week]
ADOBE: Ah, Steve? Steve? Are you there?
STEVE: Hmm, oh it's you. Can I help you with something?
ADOBE: Ah, how's about 5$/unit.
STEVE [Applying RDF]: you think it would be strategic to offer the Flash Player for free on the iPhone.
ADOBE: Ah... We've decided it would be strategic to offer the player for free on iPhones... [blinks a few times, regains focus] But you've got to pay for the development and maintenance.
STEVE: Already done.

This is how i see this being played out.

cliffjumper68
Jul 6, 2007, 11:21 AM
Universal must be taking its cues from Adobe.

From this thread:
http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=325676



This is how i see this being played out.

I wonder how long it will take for these companies to realize it is about the consumer? Apple serves to the consumer= apple success. Pretty simple, and hey, I am not even a rocket scientist! My mom will be so proud :)

TitoC
Jul 6, 2007, 11:35 AM
Universal must be taking its cues from Adobe.

From this thread:
http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=325676

Originally Posted by iSee
I think Apple was playing a game of chicken with Adobe over the flash player licensing fee. Adobe wants a pretty penny for the player on embedded devices.

[Dramatic reenactment]
ADOBE: So, you want the flash player on your new phone, eh?
STEVE: Yep.
ADOBE: OK, that'll be 5% of retail sales.
STEVE: Ah, no
ADOBE: OK, 2.5%, bottom line.
STEVE: Look, we can release this device without the Flash player at all.
ADOBE: No way, we rule dynamic content on the web--if you want to give people the "real web" you've got to play ball.
STEVE [to the public]: Develop using Web 2.0, Flash Player will suck your battery so it's really better that you don't have FP. [applies RDF effect].
PUBLIC: [Buys 100,000 x ? phones in the first week]
ADOBE: Ah, Steve? Steve? Are you there?
STEVE: Hmm, oh it's you. Can I help you with something?
ADOBE: Ah, how's about 5$/unit.
STEVE [Applying RDF]: you think it would be strategic to offer the Flash Player for free on the iPhone.
ADOBE: Ah... We've decided it would be strategic to offer the player for free on iPhones... [blinks a few times, regains focus] But you've got to pay for the development and maintenance.
STEVE: Already done.


This is how i see this being played out.

OMG, I laughed so hard! Great stuff.

As Obi-Wan Kenobi would say "These aren't the Apps you are looking for."

We want to see more scripts, more scenarios!!!

I can definitely see that happening. Especially now that we have the Flash rumor from Walt Mossberg. Funny, the iPhone is released WITHOUT Flash and within a few days, we get a rumor that Flash WILL be released after all. Hmmm . . . . this scenario seems more plausible everyday.

Antares
Jul 6, 2007, 11:57 AM
The record companies should exist only for distributing physical music mediums. Since Apple, with iTunes, and many other companies distribute the music electronically, the record companies should not be involved. What purpose do they serve? Production studios and record companies are different things. A production studio would record and engineer the music...then, it goes to the record company to manufacture, market and distribute the music. With electronic music, you can completely bypass the record company since you don't need to manufacture and physically distribute the music anymore. It can go directly to the electronic music shop. You can hire whatever marketing company you want to promote the music. What does Universal (and other record companies) actually do in distributing music on iTunes? The music is already made. They don't manufacture or distribute anything. They don't even need to convert the songs into an electronic format...the production studio can do it. Yet, the record company still gets money for it? Why? Why do they get money if they do nothing for the artist when the music is distributed online?

Yes, artists probably have a contract that binds them to the record companies for all forms of distribution (including electronic)...but it really doesn't have to be that way. Artists should control where (and by whom) distributes their music online....not the records companies. Let the record companies control physical distribution. But they should not be able to control electronic distribution since they serve no purpose and contribute nothing in that format.

My 3 cents, anyhoo....

cliffjumper68
Jul 6, 2007, 12:16 PM
The record companies should exist only for distributing physical music mediums. Since Apple, with iTunes, and many other companies distribute the music electronically, the record companies should not be involved. What purpose do they serve? Production studios and record companies are different things. A production studio would record and engineer the music...then, it goes to the record company to manufacture, market and distribute the music. With electronic music, you can completely bypass the record company since you don't need to manufacture and physically distribute the music anymore. It can go directly to the electronic music shop. You can hire whatever marketing company you want to promote the music. What does Universal (and other record companies) actually do in distributing music on iTunes? The music is already made. They don't manufacture or distribute anything. They don't even need to convert the songs into an electronic format...the production studio can do it. Yet, the record company still gets money for it? Why? Why do they get money if they do nothing for the artist when the music is distributed online?

Yes, artists probably have a contract that binds them to the record companies for all forms of distribution (including electronic)...but it really doesn't have to be that way. Artists should control where (and by whom) distributes their music online....not the records companies. Let the record companies control physical distribution. But they should not be able to control electronic distribution since they serve no purpose and contribute nothing in that format.

My 3 cents, anyhoo....
Completely agree, the RIAA/MPAA have a vested interest in preventing digital distribution since it is harder for them to add value to the process.

cisco1138
Jul 6, 2007, 12:36 PM
This is about preventing another monopoly, which is never good for business. If things stay the way they are Apple will end up with too much power. Regardless of who it is, a monopoly is a bad thing.

But as I understand, this is a not a very profitable monopoly. It's a keep prices down monopoly. It forces other online music stores to keep their prices down in order to compete.

I remember when they doubled the price of music when they introduced the CD format. The music industry claimed that it was that much more expensive to manufacture. When AOL's marketing blitz proved that CD manufacturing was very cheap, music prices never did come back down. Now the ITMS has brought prices back down to what they where in the days of vinyl.

Uragon
Jul 6, 2007, 12:54 PM
It's funny how Apple (a computer company) came up with a solution to help reduced online music piracy, that the music industry or an other retail chain could come up with. Now they are complaining that Apple has too much control. They are not taking control, the mass of people supporting them are putting them in control!

Your loss Universal - Good luck using other online music stores



www.netdealsetc.com

I agree with you 200%, you said it rigthly,

JonboyDC
Jul 6, 2007, 01:09 PM
Well, I'm all for it. I hope that Universal leads other studios to do the same. Why? Because they still let the market decide where they sell their music. Right now, there isn't much of a choice, especially on the OSX-platform.
Right now, the market has decided that the best place to sell digital music is iTMS, and I don't think any studio is going to walk away from that. (And the fact that other online music services [other than eMusic] are not available for the Mac is not remotely Apple's fault -- Apple has done nothing to prevent other companies from making their music services or their mp3 players work with OSX).

Right now, Apple has agreements with the big studios, but they are not exclusive agreements (except to the extent the partners agree to make a certain very small number of songs available exclusively on iTunes as part of promotional efforts). Under their existing agreements, all of the studios are free to sell their music on other services. The long-term nature of the contracts just means that the studios have agreed to sell the songs at one pre-set price, and frees Apple from having to negotiate with the studios over the price of any particular song or album. And the long-term contracts also probably prevent the studios from offering any albums exclusively to other online services, so Apple doesn't have to fear getting shut out of selling any particular album.

This news does not mean that Universal is pulling its songs off iTMS. It just gives Universal the option to do a few things in the near future:

1) Universal could tell Apple that a particular album won't be made available on iTMS but will be exclusive to another service. And then, most likely, the online sales of that album will suck and the artist will tell Universal not to make any more stupid decisions like that.

2) Universal could tell Apple that a particular song or album will only be available on iTMS if Apple agrees to charge more than $.99 a song. Most likely, Apple will tell them to take a hike, the sales will suck, and the artist will tell Universal not to make any more stupid decisions like that.

3) Universal could, probably with 30 days notice, pull all of their music off iTMS. But there is no chance in hell this will happen unless there is another service that has a real chance of quickly replacing the lost sales. And I don't see that happening any time soon.

iMikeT
Jul 6, 2007, 01:32 PM
I'm not too worried. At most, I listen to less than a handful of Universal's artists.

The rest I could care less for.

liberty4all
Jul 6, 2007, 02:15 PM
On a related note, Apple should call the iPhone's music player iTunes -- calling it iPod makes no sense at all since it is now a Mac OS X OS, and they need to add iTunes' streaming "Radio" feature -- I want iPhone to stream music to the car on the move!!!

KingofAwesome
Jul 6, 2007, 02:28 PM
Does it take a "competent engineer and producer" to make music? Absolutely not. What they do is polish the final product.

Rap is a niche market. You can defend it all you want but it's designed to appeal to a very narrow segment of the population. Just like country or R&B or any other genre. Some people, myself included, simply have no interest in it.

Ugg, if you think that the engineers and producers merely polish the final product, then you've obviously never done any studio work, and you have no idea what you're talking about.

I never said you had to like rap, just that you shouldn't dismiss it. You also don't seem to understand what "niche" means, and it's nothing short of absurd to say that every style of music is designed to appeal to a very narrow segment of the population.

rish
Jul 6, 2007, 05:41 PM
Ok so who else is allied with Universal as I exercise my total boycott of all their products. Have these companies forgotten that it is the consumer that makes them the big bucks. I've never liked music companies, as far as I'm concerned they are the scourge of our planet.

Amazing bite the hand that feeds you. I'm not one for doing things illegally however, if Universal find their stuff being pirated I hope they have a pair of size 9's to shove right up their own a...!

This stance is merely a two finger gesture to Apple and no doubt an effort to reduce the iTunes market share. I guess it's just a short time before they experience the erected arm gesture from the pirates and anyone else who feels they are being pushed in a direction no one wants to go.

No more Universal music for me.

3rdpath
Jul 6, 2007, 06:10 PM
uni's doug morris was only posturing for a bigger slice of the pie...and apple had no reason to give it to him. bad move doug-you're bullying didn't work like the whole zune deal.

here's where it gets fun....just wait for uni's artists to start suing the label for not marketing their music in a globally competitive manner. uni has some big acts and they're gonna be big unhappy acts when their music's pulled from itunes.

just wait-it's gonna happen.

Earendil
Jul 6, 2007, 06:17 PM
Ok so who else is allied with Universal as I exercise my total boycott of all their products. Have these companies forgotten that it is the consumer that makes them the big bucks. I've never liked music companies, as far as I'm concerned they are the scourge of our planet.

Amazing bite the hand that feeds you. I'm not one for doing things illegally however, if Universal find their stuff being pirated I hope they have a pair of size 9's to shove right up their own a...!

This stance is merely a two finger gesture to Apple and no doubt an effort to reduce the iTunes market share. I guess it's just a short time before they experience the erected arm gesture from the pirates and anyone else who feels they are being pushed in a direction no one wants to go.

No more Universal music for me.

As opposed as I am to the whole ordeal, and opposed to record labels in general, I'd wait for Universal to actually DO something bad before I boycott them. So far they have only threated, not pulled the trigger.
They bought a gun, they may never use it though.

Earendil
Jul 6, 2007, 06:21 PM
1) Universal could tell Apple that a particular album won't be made available on iTMS but will be exclusive to another service. And then, most likely, the online sales of that album will suck and the artist will tell Universal not to make any more stupid decisions like that.

2) Universal could tell Apple that a particular song or album will only be available on iTMS if Apple agrees to charge more than $.99 a song. Most likely, Apple will tell them to take a hike, the sales will suck, and the artist will tell Universal not to make any more stupid decisions like that.

3) Universal could, probably with 30 days notice, pull all of their music off iTMS. But there is no chance in hell this will happen unless there is another service that has a real chance of quickly replacing the lost sales. And I don't see that happening any time soon.

Thank you for clarifying this to the masses. However I think you give the artists too much weight. #1 and #2 I think are more possible than you think, because the artists only threat is to go to a different record label AFTER their contract is fulfilled. In most artists cases, they lose fame before they ever fulfill the required number of album releases. A select few artists have the staying power to threaten Universal.

Diatribe
Jul 6, 2007, 06:41 PM
Those artists have alot to lose. It will be interesting if they stay with universal or switch to another more progressive label like emi. One can only hope :)

Half of these artists are either dead or dying... :rolleyes:

Anyway, has anyone even READ the news? You are all acting as if something happened.

bacon
Jul 6, 2007, 07:37 PM
When you buy a song on the ITMS with DRM, you are only able to play that song on apple products. That is a long term decision, an investment. That whole burning to CD path and re-ripping is garbage, you lose the cover art, song title, artist, etc doing that. The only real way to change your mind is to remove the DRM, illegally (I think).

The gasoline analogy is ridiculous. Gasoline is destroyed on use.

I couldn't pass this up without responding. I get so tired of hearing that the iTunes music store is a monopoly. It's true that if you purchase songs from the ITMS, you must play them on an iPod, but the iPod plays many file formats so there's nothing stopping you from buying your music in MP3 form, or *gasp* on CD and ripping it yourself.

<begin tortured analogy>

Think of it this way: You own a car (an iPod) which can use four different kinds of gas. You stop at a gas station (ITMS) that only sells gas for your particular car. Neither your car or the gas station represent a monopoly. A monopoly is when your car only uses one brand of gasoline that just happens to be made by the company that makes the car, they sell tons of cars and put one of their gas stations on every corner.

</end tortured analogy>

So you see, sir, it is YOU who do not know what you're talking about (in this case at least).

MikeTheC
Jul 6, 2007, 08:50 PM
Apple needs to get off their butts and create the management/contract/payment infrastructure to deal directly with artists. It needs to be as easy as signing the contracts, getting and account and uploading your material. Say $.24 per download direct to the artist.

It is time to cut the big middle men out of the picture.

I think you'll find that 'Apple' already does this.:)

And here is a case-in-point example: Mark J. Cairns' AirwolfThemes.com (http://www.airwolfthemes.com/)

MacBram
Jul 7, 2007, 03:09 AM
When you buy a song on the ITMS with DRM, you are only able to play that song on apple products. That is a long term decision, an investment. That whole burning to CD path and re-ripping is garbage, you lose the cover art, song title, artist, etc doing that. The only real way to change your mind is to remove the DRM, illegally (I think).

I think you are complaining that you get more from iTunes than a simple music file. I might be wrong, but all the information that you can store in iTunes for a given track is a little more than the file's simple metadata. iTunes is a database, and iPods have the software to sync with it. That's it. If you burn a simple mp3 or audio CD I don't know why you would expect to have all databased info that you can possibly add to iTunes, as well as an attached piece of high-quality art that is more than just the audio file's icon. I do agree that you often get just playlist numbers in place of song titles.

MS doesn't handle the metadata of files especially well at the best of times. For ever Apple has been using a dual fork for added file info, and until recently you had to tell Windows how to open a given file because it didn't know what to do with it unless you gave the file a recognized .suffix

So why would Apple give up the farm and all its efforts to produce great software and functionality that differentiates it so that MS can give the Zune (or some other player with a screen) a functional database that displays cover art and everything else you want to read about a track? Just put the Zune on shuffle and hide that brown baby in your pocket.

For me, the long-term investment is my desktop/laptop computing environment. If I want to later stick music on a player or in a car stereo, then I just accept it isn't going to be the same experience as FrontRow or whatever. There are other ways to store your music than iTunes - good luck enjoying the importing, organisation, tracking, playing and syncing of your music. For optimum enjoyment you obviously need a player that can handle it. Too bad only one company makes one, I guess we are "locked" in. If it is so easy to have this user experience across the board in software and music players why aren't all manufacturers doing it.

rob@robburns.co
Jul 7, 2007, 06:06 AM
Currently 15% (give or take a couple % depending on where you look) of their music sales are through Apple. If the trend keeps up a larger and larger share of their revenue will have to funnel through Apple. Digital music sales are not as lucrative as CD sales. Piracy is and will continue to eat into their pockets. As a result their revenue will fall.

You have this backwards. The digital sales are both more profitable and less susceptible to piracy. CDs have no DRM. If the music industry leveled the playing field — by adding DRM to CDs or removing it from online sales — CD sales would evaporate even faster.

PCMacUser
Jul 7, 2007, 06:29 AM
If Apple needed to charge more per song for Universal songs, then that would be okay for me. As long as they keep the cost per album price the same (like they did with iTunes Plus)... NZ$17.90 per album on iTunes is very very good - because to buy a new release CD costs about NZ$29.95.

bacon
Jul 7, 2007, 08:44 PM
I was simply shooting down the original poster's analogy relating purchasing music online to buying gasoline. Additionally, I commented about Jobs claiming that you can remove DRM on iTunes files by burning them to a CD and re-ripping them, which is a joke.

Besides the physical labor of doing that, you then have to reconstruct the metadata for your music: title, artist, album etc. *every* competitor to iTunes supports this metadata and provides it when you purchase music online.

Apple doesn't offer more metadata than any other service (with the possible exception of cover art) or require filesystem forking to store it. How do I know this? Take a song you bought off of iTunes, modify the metadata, move it to another computer (a Windows machine) and your modifications will be there. Delete your database, iTunes will rebuild it. There are scripts on the net that will take your iTunes files and convert them into mp3 files with all the metadata in the ID3 tag for you (not legally).

The database is for speed.

DRM is for lock in.

Apple is not alone here either, the competition uses DRM as well and has their own compatibility/migration issues.

Where Apple stands alone (correct me if I'm wrong here) is in not licensing their DRM.

I think you are complaining that you get more from iTunes than a simple music file. I might be wrong, but all the information that you can store in iTunes for a given track is a little more than the file's simple metadata. iTunes is a database, and iPods have the software to sync with it. That's it. If you burn a simple mp3 or audio CD I don't know why you would expect to have all databased info that you can possibly add to iTunes, as well as an attached piece of high-quality art that is more than just the audio file's icon. I do agree that you often get just playlist numbers in place of song titles.

MS doesn't handle the metadata of files especially well at the best of times. For ever Apple has been using a dual fork for added file info, and until recently you had to tell Windows how to open a given file because it didn't know what to do with it unless you gave the file a recognized .suffix

So why would Apple give up the farm and all its efforts to produce great software and functionality that differentiates it so that MS can give the Zune (or some other player with a screen) a functional database that displays cover art and everything else you want to read about a track? Just put the Zune on shuffle and hide that brown baby in your pocket.

For me, the long-term investment is my desktop/laptop computing environment. If I want to later stick music on a player or in a car stereo, then I just accept it isn't going to be the same experience as FrontRow or whatever. There are other ways to store your music than iTunes - good luck enjoying the importing, organisation, tracking, playing and syncing of your music. For optimum enjoyment you obviously need a player that can handle it. Too bad only one company makes one, I guess we are "locked" in. If it is so easy to have this user experience across the board in software and music players why aren't all manufacturers doing it.

GSMiller
Jul 13, 2007, 02:11 PM
From what I can make of it they won't STOP selling their content through iTunes, they'll just sell what they want for as long as they want. Regardless it just goes to show just how out of touch they really are.