OPINION: About this iTunes going “Free” rumor

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Enough people have commented on the site, tweeted, and emailed me about it, that I guess there’s no avoiding it.

Nokia announced late last year that they were offering a new service called “Comes with Music” that gives buyers of certain phones unlimited access to downloadable music libraries for one year.

This week, The Financial Times, has reported (citing “an anonymous executive familiar with the negotiations”) that Apple is in talks with the major music studios to allow purchasers of iPods and iPhones unlimited access to their libraries for a one time fee. The paper reports that Apple only wants to pay $20 per device, while Nokia is paying $80 per device.

Now, first and foremost, The Financial Times article does not mention the whole “for one year” aspect of Nokia’s deal. Everyone that’s reporting on this is saying it would be “for the life of the device”.

Yeah, right.

So let me get this straight…

The record labels…The guys that insist on DRM, live for nothing but lining their own pockets, and make a career out of suing children and old ladies over p2p downloads…THESE PEOPLE…are going to let all of us have unlimited access to their music on the devices that the majority of people in the world listen to their music on…for $20? Or even $80?

People, let’s be serious.

Is that not the dumbest thing you’ve ever heard in your life?

The argument that some have posted is that the average iPod owner only buys about 20 tracks during the life of their iPod, and that the executives would continue to get the fee every time someone purchased a new iPod, whether they downloaded anything or not. Well that sounds great for the executives…there’s just one problem with that.

There are these things called CDs that people buy. They’ve been really big for a while, and are still the #1 way that people purchase music. However, if you told the entire world they no longer have to pay for music…and its legal…then you can kiss those things goodbye.

Sure, there is a small portion of the population that will never go digital – but lets face it, iTunes would not be ranked as highly as it is in music sales if billions of songs weren’t being sold…and the idea that these greedy, bloody thirsty executives would give up that money is absurd.

These guys have been complaining for YEARS that Apple’s 30% cut is far too much…and now all the sudden they’re just going to start giving everything away?

That just doesn’t make sense.

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8 thoughts on “OPINION: About this iTunes going “Free” rumor

  1. $20 times 10 million iPods sold a quarter = a whole lot of money $$

    And then they get to do it again. And again. And again.

    It’s a whole lot of money that the RIAA isn’t getting at the moment

  2. @Michael Mistretta

    Yes, but to get that money that would have to essentially kill or cripple all other revenue streams, and in turn, would give Apple a complete lock on all digital players from this point forward.

    That doesn’t make any sense.

  3. Music used to be music… now it iTunes ! ! ! Bob Dylan; “the pump don’t work cuz the vandals took the handles…” Apple is the “vandal” and the iTunes music pump don’t work on me! Carpetbaggers… Living off other peoples genius… The hell with em! [ it’s spring 2008 lets dance! ! ! ]

  4. I completely agree with Apple Gazette. This rumor is dumb, dumb, dumb. What’s even more insane is how many people have taken it seriously. I think MacBreak weekly spent about 15 minutes discussing the matter without anyone jumping up and down and shouting: “That’s just crazy talk!”

    It’s just weird to me how people have absolutely accepted this as something that could happen. Usually every single new thing, no matter how great it might be, is immediately trashed by the nay-saying members of the blogosphere. But somehow this rumor skates right on through.

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