Is Apple to blame?

In Slate, Paul Collins discovers that there is lots of music that you can’t buy on the US iTunes Music Store. Of course, the rest of the world has known about this for sometime. And when it comes to movies and television, the US is the place. Indeed, check out the awkward Apple TV ads in Australia. (Look you can play music videos, yippie!) Compare it to the US version. By the way, Apple TV in Australia costs US$356 compared with the US price of US$299. It costs more, it does less, it’s that simple.

Of course, all other things being equal, it is hardly in Apple’s baseline interest to restrict media availability in any part of the world. But it may be in the interests of copyright owners. On the latest iTunes index, Japanese iTunes songs are the most expensive in the world (76% more expensive than the US). Me thinks that is a plausible reason why Japanese copyright owners don’t want to sell on the US store. So if Apple is to blame, it is for their ‘one price’ policy in the US.

[Update: major blog, Gizmodo, links to the iTunes Index based on this topic.]

3 thoughts on “Is Apple to blame?”

  1. Digital music publishing services (such as Apple’s iTunes) should consider using’s Digital Rights Assignment (DRA) services rather than continuing to punish consumers with Digital Rights Management (DRM) restrictions.

    Unlike DRM, DRA is not restrictive. It simply “assigns” a license number (Numly Number) to a copy of digital music and associates the number with the licensee’s name and/or membership details. The end result is a trackable MP3 or AAC or whatever format without DRM.

    If the copy is reported stolen, it can be tracked to the rightful owner. Sounds simple enough – right? This methodology can also be used on video, ebooks, etc.


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