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Apple will be forced to allow iTunes downloads to be compatible with other MP3 players

Apple has been given two weeks to fix iTunes after the Norwegian Consumer Ombudsman ruled that the MP3 download service breaks consumer protection law.  In fact, at least three Nordic nations, want iTunes downloaded songs to be playable on all digital music players -- not just iPods.  If Apple does not make its songs playable on all music devices by June 21, the company will first face heavy fines which would then be followed by court action.

The formal complaint is online as a PDF file and claims the following:
The Consumer Council of Norway hereby wishes to lodge a complaint against iTunes Music Store with the Consumer Ombudsman. The complaint is based on iTunes’ standard terms and conditions as specified at http://www.apple.com/no/support/itunes/legal/terms.html (Terms of Service) and http://www.apple.com/no/support/itunes/legal/policies.html  Terms of Sale). It is the view of the Consumer Council that several aspects of these terms are in breach of the Marketing Control Act (Markedsføringsloven) and other legislation.

In addition, iTunes uses DRM (Digital Rights Management), a type of technical standard terms and conditions, which determine how the service can be used. The Consumer Council of Norway also believes that certain aspects of the technical terms and conditions are in breach of the Marketing Control Act.
The British Phonographic Industry (BPI) recently stated that iTunes music downloads should be allowed on non-Apple MP3 players.  European regulators have given Apple enough time to eradicate the problem, with reportedly little interest from Apple.


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Not Really Apple's Fault
By Ralph The Magician on 6/10/2006 3:44:12 PM , Rating: 2
As many have already said, this doesn't really have anything to do with Apple. They'd sell just as many iPods and songs if you could transcode AAC to MP3. It's a DRM issue, and it's the record labels that press it.




RE: Not Really Apple's Fault
By JackBurton on 6/10/2006 6:29:29 PM , Rating: 1
Umm, if I was Steve Jobs I'd tell Norway so suck my ass. Apple developed their service, they can do with it what they'd like. If you don't like to, fine, use another service. But don't try and tell me what my service HAS to do. If they want to play that way, I'd yank iTunes completely out from under Norway's feet. "I'm sorry, due to the actions of your government officials, iTunes will no longer be available in Norway. To bad, so sad."


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