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Consumer groups from five nations across the pond want Apple's iTunes changed

French and German consumer groups have joined a continuing battle to force Apple to open up its DRM, which would allow songs purchased through iTunes to be played on MP3 players other than Apple's iPods. Germany and France are joining consumer agencies in Norway, Denmark and Sweden, who also want Apple to open up its service to competitors. French consumer group UFC-Que Choisir and German group Ferbraucherzentralen will join forces with consumer groups already working on the Nordic-led campaign.

Since both France and Germany have large markets for digital music, the consumer groups are hoping that Apple will be willing to work with them. “This is important because Germany and France are European giants,” said Norwegian Consumer Ombudsman Bjoern Erik Thon. Research analysts have already claimed that Apple is unlikely to change the way it does business in European nations.

Norway, Denmark and Sweden first claimed that Apple violated contract and copyright laws in June 2006. Nordic regulators have conducted at least two meetings with Apple officials over the complaints.

France put into effect a law which allows regulators to force Apple to make sure its iTunes store and iPod MP3 player is compatible with alternatives.



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Apple
By Oregonian2 on 1/24/2007 2:37:05 PM , Rating: 1
Perhaps Apple should also be forced to make their computer software packages that currently ONLY work on computers bought from Apple (much like iTune tunes only work on players bought from Apple) be required to work on other vendor computers (i.e. - Windows boxes).




RE: Apple
By MrDiSante on 1/24/2007 3:24:19 PM , Rating: 2
Better idea: Apple should be forced to make their software packages Mac only (e.g. iTunes) and then watch as their PMP marketshare drops like a stone.


RE: Apple
By Christopher1 on 1/25/2007 7:27:06 AM , Rating: 3
Really, all of this DRM nonsense should be made illegal. There are now crackers out for the DRM Apple uses on iTunes, for the WMA-DRM scheme that Microsoft pushed, and for most of the other DRM schemes.

DRM is a pipe dream of businesses that want people to buy things over and over and over, ad. infinitum. That is wrong and moreover is ILLEGAL if the prosecutors would get off their asses and read the laws in question!


RE: Apple
By masher2 (blog) on 1/25/2007 9:56:22 AM , Rating: 2
> "DRM is a pipe dream of businesses that want people to buy things over and over and over..."

Yes...and when we wear out a book, we should be able to get a free copy to replace it also. Down with the man! Para justicia y libertad! Liberté, egalité, fraternité!


RE: Apple
By oTAL on 1/26/2007 3:40:50 PM , Rating: 2
If well implemented and respecting fair use, DRM is a good thing... the only problem is that neither condition has been accomplished yet...


Spelling
By Anosh on 1/24/2007 2:17:59 PM , Rating: 2
"
quote:
said Norwegian Consumer Ombusdamn Bjoern Erik Thon.


The spelling is a bit off and should say 'Ombudsman'.




RE: Spelling
By KristopherKubicki (blog) on 1/24/2007 2:20:31 PM , Rating: 2
Fixed.


RE: Spelling
By wien on 1/24/2007 6:54:18 PM , Rating: 2
It should also be "Bjørn" not "Bjoern", but I guess we can excuse you Yanks for not whipping out the character map. ;)


I agree
By Combatcolin on 1/24/2007 2:19:32 PM , Rating: 2
2 years ago i was very much the Apple fanbuy, now i've changed.




just a little info...
By zaphikel on 1/24/2007 6:38:39 PM , Rating: 2
It's actually spelled "Verbraucherzentralen" - and its not a single group but rather a organization of independent ones: there are 16 of them, one for each German "Bundesland" (state)

;-)




I too think it's a farse.
By Regs on 1/25/2007 8:20:41 AM , Rating: 2
Here buy this 200 dollar Ipod. Oh yes, you need this 30 dollar adapter to play it in the car. Oh and here is a 200 dollar digital stereo that can play a mp4. Did I mention Levi's makes a pants that was specially tailored to carry an Ipod with this 20 dollar ear phone set?

So much for freedom of choice.




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