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Discussion in 'MacBytes.com News Discussion' started by MacBytes, Dec 4, 2004.
Link: UK govt takes iTunes gripe to Europe
Posted on MacBytes.com
Approved by Mudbug
The current situation is a no-win for Apple, the UK government, and the music companies. Something needs to be done - the question is who's going to be doing the prodding.
The Great British Music Rip-Off?
£0.79 is a lot compared to out EU neighbours to pay for a single track (see table on the Beeb report), but you have to remember what UK stores charge for CDs.
We have for years been made to pay over the odds for music. In the past there has been an uproar-or-three about it, but little has ever been done to tackle the elevated cost of CDs, DVDs and the like.
I think Apple is somewhat hemmed in by the UK market and the demands by producers and record labels for profit - they've entered into an already expensive market and few biggies in the industry will accept lesser profits.
Either Apple pay the price or they don't get to license the songs and on top of that inflated price, they still have to make their own profit. It would be nice to see one of those illustrated pie charts that show how the £0.79 we spend on a track in the UK gets shared out.
We all remember the licensing issues Apple had in the UK and the knock on effect it had in the launch of the iTMS UK and I'm sure there is more to it than Apple just wanting to rip off the average Brit.
Other online providers seem to have cheaper tracks, but from my experience of them their variety of music is limited to 'hits of the day' and 'golden oldies. Maybe that's one way to keep the running costs down, but in doing that you run the risk of appealing to only a limited audience.
Any price reduction sanctioned by the EU should not only apply to digital music, but to hard copy too.
~cel, offering his 2¢ worth
Apple has only one choice here. Stop including all the license fees and taxes in the advertised price.
Instead of advertising 80p per song, advertise something like 20p for the song, plus 20p for record-label-mandated taxes, plus 40p UK-mandated VAT taxes, or whatever.
Now, if a Brit wants to buy from the German store, he can. He'll get the German base price, but pay the UK-mandated taxes and license fees. If the customer wants to complain about the overall price difference, Apple will have no problem explaining how it's the fault of the record labels and governments.
UK folk are traditionally paying more for any commodity. Is the government going to take every manufacturer to the European Commission?
I predict this will amount to nothing.
I don't think the problem is that we are paying more as such, the problem is that Apple refuse to let us buy from other EU iTMS stores, which is breaking some open EU trading law.
But is it Apple preventing us from buying overseas or the local music labels?
Exactly! But this is not Apple's doing. The licensing they have with the record labels only allows them to sell music for a specific country within a specific country... Hence why we have all these regionalised stores.
Just like the challenges of the late 90's to the overpriced high street prices... those all amounted to nothing but sensationalist headlines on the front of the tabloids and some investigative journaling in the broadsheets.