Linked by Eugenia Loli on Fri 24th Jul 2009 22:52 UTC
Editorial Every few years we geeks have our own kind of popcorn show to watch: tech companies showing teeth to one another. This time around, it's Palm vs Apple. In all seriousness though, how ethical is the battle around iTunes?
Thread beginning with comment 375196
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
iTunes is not...
by mrhasbean on Sat 25th Jul 2009 07:59 UTC
Member since:

...locked down. I have written both Mac and Windows installer apps that allow audio and video downloads from another web site to directly import into iTunes. There was even a simple method of interfacing with a Notes feature on the classic iPods to create a custom interface for your content. Similarly there are numerous apps out there that interface with the iTunes library to allow purchases made on the ITMS to be used on other devices. There are also very simple manual methods for using iTunes content on other devices.

It is Apple's choice to only support the iPod / iPhone - and they have every right to do so. Why should they support other company's devices in an app that they give away? We also don't know what restrictions they have in their distribution agreements for ITMS content. And would this type of crud even be discussed if we were talking about the software distributed with another brand phone or MP3 player?

Reply Score: 0

RE: iTunes is not...
by Thom_Holwerda on Sat 25th Jul 2009 08:06 in reply to "iTunes is not..."
Thom_Holwerda Member since:

And would this type of crud even be discussed if we were talking about the software distributed with another brand phone or MP3 player?

This argument is just as flawed as the argument that the EU should also force Apple to remove Safari from Mac OS X.

Priceless hypocrisy.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: iTunes is not...
by mrhasbean on Sat 25th Jul 2009 08:37 in reply to "RE: iTunes is not..."
mrhasbean Member since:

This argument is just as flawed as the argument that the EU should also force Apple to remove Safari from Mac OS X.

Priceless hypocrisy.

Sanctimoniousness exceeded only by arrogance...

Edited 2009-07-25 08:39 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: iTunes is not...
by JonathanBThompson on Sat 25th Jul 2009 12:23 in reply to "RE: iTunes is not..."
JonathanBThompson Member since:

Your arrogance is only beaten by your ignorance and outright self-righteous stupidity, Thom: beyond the fact that the iTunes store is meant to support the sale of iPods and iPhones and not really meant to make much of a profit, because Apple is in general a hardware company, just because Apple no longer sells new DRM'ed tracks, does not mean at all that they aren't still legally obligated to honoring their previous made contracts with the companies that provided the music for the store. Are you going to argue that Apple must, because now they have a huge portion of the downloadable music market, violate all their contracts, and also spend money to support their competitors at an equal level of functionality as their own devices, for which the software was designed and implemented to work optimally for Apple-designed devices, and yet, Apple provides a clear and documented, supported way for third parties to use a large part of the functionality for synching with other devices? Sure, that way doesn't give 100% optimal third party seamless operation for all their devices, but why should Apple be required at all to provide that? Just because now people whine they're a monopoly, despite the fact that Apple does not at all do anti-competitive things to keep others from making and selling competitive products?? And you persist in maintaining that Palm is acting correctly by violating the terms of their contracts by spoofing vendor IDs? I realize there's a problem with your ability to comprehend that there's a valid reason that the USB standard maintainers would insist on such a clause, that they not lie about which vendor ID they are: it would never occur to your limited comprehension, clearly, that allowing that makes it far easier for IP infringement of one type or another, such as creating unlicensed knock-offs of someone's products, thereby causing the maker of the real, authorized device problems.

It's one thing to claim that your device, by the device ID, implements a particular software interface, which then leaves it up to the third party to ensure that it is: it's entirely another thing to do what Palm has done, which is fraud and forgery in the name of interoperability at the expense of Apple, by claiming to be a product manufactured by Apple when queried, regardless of what the outside label says. There's a reason that car parts licensed by GM as being official are advertised as being "genuine GM parts" because it means you know what you're going to get: while other parts made by third parties may work, they may not be made to the same standards, and if someone is mislead into thinking they're officially recognized by GM as being authorized as being the same quality or better, then they'll quite possibly assign blame where it isn't due, smearing GM's image, and possibly coming back on GM for when using some unauthorized part may cause further damage, which may happen under warranty: using unauthorized parts for repairs has a whole slew of problems.

What if Apple decides they've found a superior way to update their iPods, or a faster way to do the actual synching of music/data stored by users to their iPods/iPhones? What, do they have to get permission of all the third parties to modify their own system for Mac/PC-side software (iTunes) and their iPod/iPhone firmware, keep them in the loop, and wait for them to catch up and change their stuff? How is that remotely just? Why would it make sense for any other device maker to pretend to be something they're not, with the possibility that as a result, their device might be rendered inoperable due to either an advance in the system meant to make the real products that it is pretending to be more efficient/have more capabilities or just to a stupid bug somehow between a new version of iTunes and the third party device? From that point alone, Palm is being incredibly stupid, as you are, in thinking Apple should allow this, and that Apple should support this, but since you've never written software for a living, and never will, and you just love to find the biggest pile of sh!t and jump up and down in it to generate headlines and page views, everyone can count on you not to investigate and comprehend and report what all the possible ramifications are, as you don't come close to observing journalistic integrity, nor business/legal/technical common sense integrity by spewing forth all this crappy reasoning. When you've had many years actually developing and testing hardware/software/firmware, maybe you'll understand enough to realize how things really are, but I don't expect that will cause you to agree that others shouldn't bend over and kiss your butt to do your bidding.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: iTunes is not...
by sbergman27 on Sat 25th Jul 2009 15:50 in reply to "iTunes is not..."
sbergman27 Member since:

...and they have every right to do so.

Just a general observation. Whenever these kinds of topic are discussed, there is always someone who wants to go on about how this 'incorporated' entity has this or that right or rights. Now while the whole idea of creating a fictional person (incorporation) to allow entrepreneurs to limit their financial liability might (or might not) be beneficial to society... I really don't see how it is beneficial to give these fictional 'people' rights which trump the goal of promoting the general welfare, as the U.S. Constitution's preamble puts it. Why should the rights of this fake person, created ostensibly to save some entrepreneur's financial ass if his business goes south, trump the goal of ensuring that consumers, otherwise known as "The People" (and real people, at that) enjoy the benefits of a healthy market, exhibiting healthy competition. Apple, Inc. isn't a person. Apple, Inc is a fictional character created on a piece of paper.

Please try to maintain reasonable perspective when talking about how its "rights" fit into the greater picture.

Edited 2009-07-25 16:07 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 5