Norway bans iTunes store, cuts nose, spites face

Socialist paradise keeps users from buying where they want in the name of freedom...

Friday, January 26, 2007 by Frogboy | Discussion: WinCustomize News

This week Norway banned Apple from selling songs via iTunes Music store in Norway. This was done on the grounds that Apple's DRM "Fairplay" forces users to play the music via iTunes which they feel infringes on the rights of users (though forcing users to not be able to choose to buy songs from iTunes apparently is a newly discovered freedom).

Europe's obsession with media playing technologies developed in the United States (as seen with its millions in fines against Microsoft) seems confined to media player.

No word yet on whether Norway plans to invade neighboring Finland to take out Nokia's diabolical plan of forcing people who want to play n-Gage games to buy a Nokia n-Gage. 

Gillette, maker of razor blades that force users to use Gillette razors declined to comment on whether they were concerned that Norway would target them next.

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Reply #41 Sunday, January 28, 2007 12:07 AM
I'm not saying Apple has a monopoly on the entire digital music. They make 70% of all digital music sales, but I wouldn't consider that a monopoly. What they do have, though, is a monopoly of certain artists whose labels only made deals with Apple. If you want digital music from those artists, you have to go through iTunes.

I knew someone would bring up video games, and it's a valid point. But the difference is that games available only on one console are often made by the console maker. For example, Super Mario is distinctly Nintendo. Nintendo owns Mario and can do what they want.

Apple, on the other hand, does not own the music they distribute. They only own the distribution method and the players. If every distinct method for media distribution called for it's own player, that would be a big pain. Especially if you had to sort through each distribution method to find the song you like, sometimes having to go to three, four or more different stores.

As I said, I don't think it's any government's place to ban iTunes on these grounds. The best solution to this is for record labels to allow their music be made available on all the music stores. If people like iTunes and iPods, they can stick with it. But if you're like me and would want to get music elsewhere, that choice would be available.
Reply #42 Sunday, January 28, 2007 2:52 AM

Your analogy isn't apt because console makers regularly make exclusive deals with game producers.

Midway on Playstation. GTA was for a long while only on Playstation.  They had exclusive agreements.

I simply trust the intelligence of people. I am very skeptical when I see people say that people are "too dumb" to make good decisions. I'm not saying you are but this thread reeks of elitism.

The market can decide for itself. It is almost never a good idea for a government to step in and force its population to choose differently.

Reply #43 Sunday, January 28, 2007 6:32 AM
The European system of education and government greatly inhibits your ability to
develop products the world really wants.

may I point out that, as someone mentioned above, the ipod was developed by an englishman ?
may I point out that, if Boeing surpassed Airbus last year, that means that Airbus had the market before ?
the computing industry is based on work of Turing, an Englishman.
Also Europe has it's own businesses that do pretty well. Nokia, Siemens and Philips each delivered products in the past that are used all over the globe (GSM, videorecorders, DVD to name a few, and the "inventor" of the iPod was : an ex-Philips employé).
It is not the educational part that is the problem, I believe the European model is one of the best in the world, giving a chance to every child to get proper education.

But I agree with you that European legislation can be to restrictive. And we have a very heavy bureaucracy. If you want, I can bring up the weak points of the American system, but I will not do it here, out of respect for other people.

But to come back on the subject of music sold over iTunes, I believe Apple has the right to sell songs, but not to bind it to one carrier. Yes you can rip a CD you created, but I think, if you read the fineprint of the EULA, you will find this is illegal.
Apple is making a lot of money out of this, how many people would by on their store, if they did not own an iPod ? And more important, how many people would NOT buy an iPod, if you could play their music on other devices ?

As an example, I want to be able to put a song on my USB stick, plug it into my car radio, and listen to it. As it is today, I need an iPod and some fancy intermediate, what will cost me several hunderds of dollars/euros, just to be able to listen to a song worth 0.99 US $ ? Where is the interest for the consumer ? The interest for Apple of course is clear. I am sure that, if someone brought a player to market, able to play Apples format, Apple will prosecute him to death.

I don't own an iPod, and I don't want one. I have a creative MP3 player since the nineties, and I am very happy with it. So it is not like they invented the market, as they claim, but they were able to give it enough momentum through their marketing machine.
Just my 2 cents,
Reply #44 Sunday, January 28, 2007 10:29 AM

It means what it means, nothing is hidden. The European systems of education is elitist on its face. Europe, denies the ability of all to attend the best European schools, thereby restricting opportunity, economic development and spawning frustration. Do I need to go any further than the riots in France last year to show a clear example, or how the Turks are treated in Germany. In the United States our universities are open to all, you are only limited by your drive to succeed. That is why everyone want to come here to go to school.

You may be offended by this, but it is true, what goes on in your soccer stadiums, your streets, your culture and your schools are the product of a society that does not provide opportunity to all. Life is good if your are a Parisian, or the citizen of any other western european capital and you are part of the elite, it is, fill in the expletive, if you are not.

European governments and the large business enterprises work hand in hand in the development of industrial policy, anti-trust policy. For example,in France, the elite,in general the graduates Les Grandes Ecoles, just migrate between government civil service and business based on which politcal party is in power. It's the same people, employment for life, you can't fire them.

Also, the states pick business winners and losers and have a great hand in what new technologies are to be developed, Airbus is a prime example. A companion notion to the picking or winners and losers in this faulty concept of the protection of the so-called national champions. The free transfer of capital, M&A activity is limited by virtue of the protection of business, not are market power considerations as in the United States. For example - you want to know why there isn't a worldclass French computer industry? It is because the French goverment protected Machines Bull and prevented the import of IBM products in the 1970s and 1980s. This policy stunted the developed of a competitve computer industry in France. By the time the French government realized what they had done the game was over. French business can't get the Bull products replaced fast enough. As any France Telecom employee, they'll tell you.

Further, the social costs, read taxes, of hiring employees, starting new entreprenurial businesses or tasking risks has a permanent chilling effect on Europe compared to the US or Asia.

All of the above, as I said earlier, has a chilling effect on the development of products that have a universal appeal. You have bureaucrats, the product of an elitist,
educational system directing industrial policy. Under such a system and culture, Jobs and
Gates would not have been able to succeed. Their only recourse is to try to implement the same restrictive practices on US business competing in Europe. It has failed with regard to IBM in the past and Microsoft, Apple, now.
Reply #45 Sunday, January 28, 2007 11:31 AM
The library of music Apple has contracted to pay a royalty for is a piece or body of proprietary, intellectual property, whith which they should be able to restrict access to and ultimately be able to earn a profit, or else why would it expend capital to gain access to music that no other service provides. Apple should not be forced to provide access in any format, when they went out and spent the extra capital to gain access to music that is not available through any other source, just because it appears inconvenient? It doesn't make any sense.

If you don't want to download it in the Apple format, then buy it from Napster or anyone else, if you can.

Let me provide you an exammple. The rights to the Beatles' music catalog was owned outright by Michael Jackson for quite a while, not by John, Paul, George or Ringo. If Michael Jackson decided to restrict access to the catalog only via a LP, vinyl record and not digitally, should he have been forced to provide access, to satisfy the desires of some foreign government?

He obviously didn't record the music, but he did own the rights. The only difference between Jackson's ownership control and Apple's contractual right is one owns and the other rents. Does the type of ownership of your place of residence by mortgage, rent or outright ownership have any kind of restriction on your ability to be secure in your house or apartment?
Reply #46 Sunday, January 28, 2007 11:53 AM

may I point out that, as someone mentioned above, the ipod was developed by an englishman ?
may I point out that, if Boeing surpassed Airbus last year, that means that Airbus had the market before ?
the computing industry is based on work of Turing, an Englishman.
Reply #47 Sunday, January 28, 2007 5:07 PM
Well, then I am happy the "elite" like you state is, is so big in Europe.
I am from Belgium, and I can tell you that here, everybody can go to the university, and if you can not pay for it, the state will help you financially to do it. The only limit is your will to succeed.
In the US everybody can go to the University ? If you or your parents can pay for it, yes. And where is the difference with the Grandes Ecoles in France ? Harvard, Princeton and Yale are examples that spring to mind.
What happens in the football stadions, is not limited to social class. There are hardcore hooligans that have university degrees and a good job. And they are not exceptions. Don't ask me why they do it, and I will not ask you about the reoccuring killing sprees on American schools.
You mentioned the Turks in Germany. May I remind you how in the US Mexicans or blacks are treated ? For my job I go often to Germany, they are nice people, always friendly, trying to make a living. Just like everyone else. And all of them are still ashamed about what happened in the first half of last century.
Cultures are different, rules are different in different parts of the world. I accept this.
Do you ?
PS please watch some documentaries. there are a few that I can recommend :
- Bowling for Columbine
- Fahrenheit 9/11
- An Inconvenient Truth
but of course you already did. And I know many Americans personnaly, from all over, and one in particular was a very close friend of mine.
Btw, unfortunately you live so far away, or I would offer you a beer
(Belgium beers are the best in the world, surely everybody knows that )
Reply #48 Sunday, January 28, 2007 6:12 PM

Poor frogboy. Yep, the socialist state of mind is everywhere. I live in Europe and I see it everyday. We can not decide for ourselves, noooo that would be too dangerous. So the state comes in and forces everyone to behave the way the state thinks they should behave.

And because the state mandates this behavior by law, that is by compelling people by sheer force, we have no choice. Whole generations are spoon fed this socialist way of thinking by the schools, the state will take care of you, by the news papers, yea there is a problem what will the government DO about it and actually almost everyone else.

No, most posters above me are not socialist in the sense that they would identify themselves with it. But they ARE socialist in the sense that they accepted the most basis premise from socialism. And that is that the state must take precedence over the market. That is, that the force of the state is better most of the time, than the voluntary cooperation of the market. The market is hated or at least distrusted and the government is seen as essentially good and trustworthy.

It was not always like that. Once the market was seen as trustworthy and most people distrusted the state. But now even after a century were the state perpetrated the most horrible totalitarian crimes in West and eastern-Europe, Russia, China, North Korea, Cambodia and many other countries my fellow Europeans have learned nothing. They are still in essence state worshipers! And that my friends is socialism in its essence! What we see here is the victory of 40 years of indoctrination of cultural Marxist philosophy.

Frogboy within a few decades Europe will be a museum for Americans and people from Asia. Companies will have left Europe and its collapsing welfare states with high taxes and idiotic economic laws. And while the European culture of enlightenment and the free market will be forgotten I can perhaps earn a few bucks by being your tour guide in the European wasteland that cultural Marxism will have created.

Reply #49 Monday, January 29, 2007 3:21 AM
and with that, Hawk999, I have to agree .
People are afraid, afraid to lose their jobs and the good life they have.
They are afraid of immigrants, of mondialization, of worldscale polution.
And they blame industry and the market place for that.
Can you blame them ? They hear about it on the news daily.
And so they turn to the state to protect them against blind kapitalism.
But I am sure there is a narrow path between what you call cultural Marxism and kaptitalism.
Just hope we find the right balance before it is too late.
Shadow Lord
Reply #50 Tuesday, January 30, 2007 3:25 AM
Well I just have to say:

Way to go Norway!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Now if we only could get the sniveling cowards in congress to stand up for the populace (read customer's rights) by getting tough on BS DRM, authentication, HDCP etc. etc. then maybe we wouldn't need such drastic measures by other countries...

I am all for content producers protecting their property/IP but when it begins to hamper my ability to enjoy goods I have paid for, in the manner I want to, then it has crossed the line. In the early 80s things were onerous: disks allowed only one install of a software, and you had to unistall before moving to a new system. Of course if your computer crashed before you unistalled said software you were left w/o back up... Companies saw the error of their ways and immensly relaxed the BS. It was during this time that MS became the giant it is and BG gained a net worth of $100 billion... Windows sold extremly well with just astupid serial number as protection...

Companies now see the internet as a panacea of big brotherhood wherethey can secretly keep tabs on their costumers vis a vis servers required for updates, registeration, authentication, and other bloated BS. All of this might give them a short term boost in sales but in the end will be self defeating.. Maybe not for MS (who controls 99.99999999999% of the real market) but for everyone else it will be a problem eventually...
Shadow Lord
Reply #51 Tuesday, January 30, 2007 3:30 AM
Perhaps a European company should start up their own service and compete with Apple. What exactly is the barrier to entry to selling digital music over the Internet?

I believe a russian company did... But seems like a lot of american companies are trying to shut them down... Therussians had the gads to offer freedom of choice to their users... I know ghastly isn't it...

Reply #52 Tuesday, January 30, 2007 9:17 AM

I believe a russian company did... But seems like a lot of american companies are trying to shut them down... Therussians had the gads to offer freedom of choice to their users... I know ghastly isn't it...

That the same bunch of Russians that seem to have a comprehension problem when the word 'copyright' is mentioned?

Fun little thread, this....

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