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831 comments

Nice link.... (-1, Offtopic)

Mz6 (741941) | more than 9 years ago | (#11803942)

It would be nice to have a working link, eh?

Re:Nice link.... (4, Interesting)

mikecito (777939) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804018)

Sheesh - that sucks. Right when I was about to start using ITunes, too. It's too bad - they finally find a product the consumer wants, and they squander it. All in the name of keeping bad artists in business. Let's face it - the talented and popular don't need higher prices. This is to support the one-hit-wonders that never sell a cd because their only good song is mixed with 10 other crap songs, and no one will pay $15 for it. Instead, they just pay 99 cents for the one song that was good. Good job, RIAA. Good job.

How to eliminate MP3. (1, Interesting)

PopeAlien (164869) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804053)

Its all part of the strategy of destroying MP3s.
raise the price til no one will buy them. Ta-DA! no more MP3s!

I still think this would be a more permanent solution though:

no more music piracy! [popealien.com]

Re:How to eliminate MP3. (1)

lpp (115405) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804142)

Um, except there's a problem with that theory. No one buys MP3s from the major labels through channels accepted by those labels (that last bit is included because of places like AllofMP3 which do sell major label music, but the labels are screaming bloody murder about it).

If anything, it's likely to cause a percentage increase in the MP3 share of music files. Or at least an increase for non-DRM-encumbered music files.

Does not affect MP3s (1)

AtariAmarok (451306) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804144)

"raise the price til no one will buy them. Ta-DA! no more MP3s!"

The services discussed there do not sell MP3's. How does raising the price on non-MP3 files negatively impact MP3's?

Re:How to eliminate MP3. (2, Informative)

Tree131 (643930) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804146)

Very few sites sell MP3s anymore. The one in russia just got shut down or in the process of.
Napster sells them in DRM protected WMA, so does Walmart (I think).
Apple sells their songs in AAC format, which also has some sort of DRM on it.

www.allofmp3.com (5, Funny)

zackrentwood (828124) | more than 9 years ago | (#11803950)

All of MP3 http://www.allofmp3.com/ [allofmp3.com] already went from $0.01/MB to $0.02. This is old news.

Re:www.allofmp3.com (1)

agraupe (769778) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804073)

You took my joke! As soon as I saw that headline, I thought "what??? I might have to pay 10 cents per song from allofmp3?" Even if I did, I would still use it. I know it probably isn't legal, but I figure that the record companies have ripped me off enough (I always buy full CDs if I want the whole CD), so it doesn't really matter.

Re:www.allofmp3.com (1)

jammindice (786569) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804182)

Seriously how much more do they think that they would get anyway?

I wouldn't buy any cd that's more than ~$12-$15 anyway at 15 songs an album that's 1 dolla per song.

I listen to the radio anyway, XM satellite radio is the way to go....

True Colors? (2)

scaltagi_the_pirate (777620) | more than 9 years ago | (#11803958)

They are all rich, greedy bastards. Nothing to see here... move along.

Re:True Colors? (2, Interesting)

kc0re (739168) | more than 9 years ago | (#11803991)

I agree. and furthermore.. Can there be a statute of limitations on collecting money for music? Say anything over 10 years can be at a discounted or totally free price? like .10 cents. All the good music was produced more than 5-6 years ago anyway. (IMO)

Re:True Colors? (4, Interesting)

geoffspear (692508) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804167)

There is a "statute of limitations", of sorts. When copyright runs out, you can no longer force people to pay your for the music you own.

Of course, you'll probably be long dead before the copyright on any high-quality digital recordings runs out, so it doesn't help you much.

I don't believe it (1)

oscast (653817) | more than 9 years ago | (#11803965)

Haven't we already gone over this a few months ago. They wanted to raise the prices but were not able to because they already signed long term contracts which restrict the price to be where it currently is? And wasn't the base price of the song 90 cents... with the distributor getting only a dime for every download? I remember reading that somewhere.

Regardless, all this ruckus about music download prices increasing stinks of FUD from the non #1 music download stores who want to push their music subscription services.

Re:I don't believe it (1)

DrEldarion (114072) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804102)

According to this new article, the base price of a song is 65 cents. I seem to remember it higher as well, though.

This is a great idea... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11803967)

More people will resort to piracy and I'll be harder to catch... :P

New record label? (5, Funny)

tommyth (848039) | more than 9 years ago | (#11803973)

I've never heard of this "404" record label. Or are they a group representing record labels? And why is /. affiliated with them?

Please at least check the link before posting (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11803974)

Wow. A single-link story with a broken link... and _how_ did this make it onto the front page? Seriously, all during 'the mysterious future' it had the broken link, and now you can comment on it, and it _still_ has a broken link.

Only in it for the $$$$ (1)

Shadow_139 (707786) | more than 9 years ago | (#11803978)


It's all about the $$$$


If they can't SUE you.., they'll just get as much out of you as possiable..,

Adding to the fire... (4, Insightful)

TrippTDF (513419) | more than 9 years ago | (#11803981)

From my standpoint, the piracy fire has not been put out yet. Increasing the cost of music is just going to push people away from paying for music.

illegal trust (5, Interesting)

cooley (261024) | more than 9 years ago | (#11803982)

If this isn't the very reason we have anti-trust laws here in the USA, then I don't know what is.

Re:illegal trust (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11804078)

What the hell are you babbling about. The record companies recognize that by converting the music to MP3 format they are doing work you would otherwise have to do and just want to charge you for it.

If you buy the CD then you must also cover the cost of ripping and converting it to the format of your choice. These things cost money and the record companies just want compensation.

Re:illegal trust (1)

cooley (261024) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804177)

Nice knee-jerk reaction, AC.

This equates to the heads of an industry (reps from the big record companies) conspiring to get retailers/distributors to artificially raise prices, contrary to what the market is doing.

Wait... (3, Insightful)

Avyakata (825132) | more than 9 years ago | (#11803986)

I guess the music companies still think free music is taking away from their profits, even though it isn't free anymore...

In Soviet Russia... (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11803990)

link breaks you!

Wow blisteringly detailed ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11803995)

linked article. Or did Hemos /. slashdot?

Nope (0, Troll)

uberjoe (726765) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804001)

Never paid for it in my life, and I'm not about to start. I guess I can be proud of that.

Re:Nope (3, Funny)

RobotRunAmok (595286) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804136)

Never paid for it in my life, and I'm not about to start. I guess I can be proud of that.

Whaddya proud of? That you're 12 years old? Sure, great, here's a cookie...

Beancounter Logic (1, Informative)

bigtallmofo (695287) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804003)

First, since the article appears to be a bum link, here's the text of it:

Music companies seek larger chunk of online music revenues

Dow Jones
Published on: 02/28/05
LONDON -- Leading music labels are in talks with online retailers to raise wholesale prices for digital music downloads, in a bid to capitalize on growing demand for legal online music, the Financial Times reports Monday.

The moves, which suggest that the labels want a bigger slice in the fledgling market's spoils, has angered Steve Jobs, the Apple Computer chief executive officer who is behind the popular iTunes online music store, the newspaper says.

But music executives expressed caution about their ability to push through unilateral price increases, the report says.

Among the biggest groups, Universal Music and Sony BMG are known to be particularly reluctant to disrupt the market for downloads.

One top label said it would not raise wholesale prices now because the market wasn't yet mature enough for a price increase, the newspaper reports.


This is typical bean-counter logic. Let's see... 1 million sales at $0.99 = $990,000. But 1 million sales at $9.99 = $9,990,000! Wow, that's 10x better!

Re:Beancounter Logic (1)

garcia (6573) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804197)

This is typical bean-counter logic. Let's see... 1 million sales at $0.99 = $990,000. But 1 million sales at $9.99 = $9,990,000! Wow, that's 10x better!

But see they're in it for the musicians so it's ok. Right?

Sadly, people will pay the increased prices (everyone pointed to the eventual raise to 1.25 when iTunes first started) because they don't have a choice. Once the sales peak off and start to drop it will of course be the pirates fault.

See! We allowed downloads to happen legally and we had to cover our costs by raising the prices only a little (mind you most physical CDs are in the $13 to $16 range) so 1.25/track seems logical right?!?!?

Sad.

Prices (2, Interesting)

johndiii (229824) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804005)

Given that I downloaded all of Ray Charles' Genius Loves Company for only $4, I'm not surprised. If there was something of value in the disc package besides the music, I would have been willing to buy it. But the extra $15 (to get to the recommeded retail price) just isn't worth it.

Smooth... (0, Troll)

AceCaseOR (594637) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804013)

Smooth, editors, very smooth. Somebody had to have submitted an version article that had a working link.

Sing, fuckers, sing! (3, Funny)

Tackhead (54550) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804019)

Gimme a simple backbeat. *thumpa, thumpa, thumpa* Aaw yeah, that's it.

> The requested URL (%3CA%20HREF=) was not found.
> > Nothing for you to see here. Please move along.

Percent three, with a Cee-Ayy percent,
Nothin' for you to see here.
Percent twenty, Aitch-Arr-Eee-Eff,
URL wasn't found.
Slashdot editors makin' no sense,
Nothin' for you to see here.
Least it wasn't a duplicate H-ref,
Time to move along.

(If the article was workin' I'd know how much to charge you for reading this. Sheesh.)

Well they have to raise prices (5, Insightful)

the_skywise (189793) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804021)

Because the cost of manufacturing has...

Er... Because they have to hire more employees to handle the purchasing load...

Er... Because the Britney Spears needs a new swimming pool for her poodle... yeah!

Isn't it time we just declare the RIAA a monopoly and start regulating it because, obviously, there is no competition.

Re:Well they have to raise prices (4, Insightful)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804110)

Isn't it time we just declare the RIAA a monopoly and start regulating it because, obviously, there is no competition.

The RIAA is not a monopoly. They do not produce anything (although their members do), and so can not be a monopoly. They are a cartel. Not that that's any better...

Re:Well they have to raise prices (1)

Auckerman (223266) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804198)

"The RIAA is not a monopoly. They do not produce anything (although their members do), and so can not be a monopoly. They are a cartel. Not that that's any better..."

Monopolistic collusion is still illegal, which is the basis of their tactics. No need for symantic games, they are a monolopy.

Re:Well they have to raise prices (5, Insightful)

Vicsun (812730) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804111)

Er... because price collusion is perfectly legal and ethical.

Re:Well they have to raise prices (1)

killmenow (184444) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804123)

...something about Britney Spears...
Uhh, no no. You have that wrong. It's:

Er... Because the CEO of MGM Records needs a new swimming pool for his third vacation home... yeah!

Re:Well they have to raise prices (2, Insightful)

Elwood P Dowd (16933) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804140)

It's not a monopoly, it's price fixing/collusion/whatever. There are several different firms, so it can't be a monopoly.

Just askin' (0, Troll)

bonch (38532) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804022)

As of this post, the link points to "http://slashdot.org/%3CA%20HREF= [slashdot.org] ". Does this mean the editors don't even read the submissions or check what they post? A completely broken link on, say, CNN.com would be kind of a big deal and grounds for reprimand to the webmaster.

I'm probably not alone in this: (3, Insightful)

theparanoidcynic (705438) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804026)

I wouldn't pay more for legal downloads than what they already cost. If it costs the same as a CD I'll buy the CD if I want to be legit. A CD is lossless and comes with the little booklet anyhow. Plus, no (non-laughable) DRM.

Wow that's really gonna hurt (5, Funny)

vapid transit (738521) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804032)

If they raise prices they'll be even less competitive with the price of $0.00 that I currently pay per song.

Serves them right for making nicey-nicey with RIAA (1)

sulli (195030) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804034)

He who sups with the devil should use a long spoon.

Guess we'll have to go somewhere else... (2, Insightful)

ctl4u (12243) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804037)

Like here [allofmp3.com] for example. Not to mention you get your choice of formats: ogg,m4a,mp3,wma. And at about a dime a song you can't beat it.

Article Text (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11804038)

404 File Not Found
The requested URL (apple/05/02/28/%3CA%20HREF=) was not found.

If you feel like it, mail the url, and where ya came from to pater@slashdot.org [mailto] .


Here's [clickability.com] a link to at least a similar story. Got the link from DrudgeReport.com [drudgereport.com]

In other news Slashdot quality WAY down (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11804046)

Slashdot... the place to come and read articles with shifty headlines about ipod's shuffling order... clearly fake threads from forums about firefox being spyware detected... or articles with no working URLs at all! God I love it

mp3s? (2, Interesting)

wvitXpert (769356) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804048)

I don't know of any online music stores that sell mp3s. So let the prices rise as high as they want them. When they start raising the prices on Protected WMA and Protected AAC I'll start to care.

Well... (1)

Blue-Footed Boobie (799209) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804049)

RIAA Executive Meeting

Dick #1: "Man, this piracy thing is still a major pain in the ass!"

Dick #2: "Yeah, maybe more lawsuits will stop it."

Dick #3: "Ok, on to the next agenda. We need more money."

Dick #1: "Oh, how about rasing the rates for the MP3 download services?"

Dick #3: "Capital idea! Done and Done."

Dick #2: "Great! Now, shall we get back to beating puppies to death?"

Dicks: "Huzzah!!"

Illegal? (4, Interesting)

phorm (591458) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804051)

Wasn't the recording industry nailed for trying to force retailers to up the price for CD's. Wouldn't this be just as illegal for Mp3 downloads?

fixed broken link and article text (1, Redundant)

biryokumaru (822262) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804060)

the link from the post:

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2005/02/28/downloads_ price_rises/

and text:

Music download prices to rise

By John Oates

Published Monday 28th February 2005 10:24 GMT

The market for downloaded music is strong enough to take a price rise, according to the major music labels.

Several big labels are in talks with online music retailers to get them to increase prices,according to the FT. The labels are looking to increase the wholesale prices shops pay for tracks. Sites in the US typically sell tracks for 99 cents each. The wholesale price is currently 65 cents per track, according to the FT.

Universal and Sony BMG are less keen to put prices up. EMI and Time Warner refused to comment on the FT story. Some observers are concerned that increasing prices would push people back to peer-to-peer networks and dodgy copies of songs.

The music industry is apparently unhappy with Apple's increasing share of the market - the firm sells about 65 per cent of songs sold online. The arrival of cheaper iPods is likely to give the firm an even larger share of the market. Apple refused to comment on the FT's story but Steve Jobs is reportedly deeply unhappy with the attempted price hike.

One suggestion is that labels want to introduce variable pricing - so they can charge more for top selling tracks.

Meanwhile it was confirmed on Friday that the European Commission is investigating allegations that British consumers are being ripped off by Apple's iTunes service because it charges more for downloads from the UK site and does not allow punters to buy tracks from other country's iTunes sites. ®

wow didnt see that coming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11804068)

mp3 prices are rising

wendy's trimmed their dollar menu and added more money on their combos.

oh my freaking god, the world is coming to an end.

Oh, that's a good idea. (1)

DrEldarion (114072) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804069)

NEWSFLASH TO RIAA: People are paying for MP3s right now because they are affordable. If you try to raise the prices, you'll end up making LESS money since more people will say to themselves, "Wait, why am I paying for this? $0.99 was no big deal, but now... especially when I can download them for free elsewhere..."

Sounds like OPEC (1)

Smallpond (221300) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804071)

I suggest the group change their name from RIAA to MPEC - the Music Professionals & Entertainment Cartel.

Doesnt effect Me a bit (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804075)

I refuse to donate to the industry.. so why should i care they are raising prices?

Contracts... (4, Informative)

somethinghollow (530478) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804082)

I think it was Steve Jobs who said Apple has contracts with the record labels to sell songs at .99. These contracts, if I remember correctly, were for at least 5 years. The same rumors [macobserver.com] happened last year in may. But, I guess we'll see what happens.

Why piracy is "good" for the consumer... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11804090)

From an analyst quote over at CNN:

"If piracy was somehow stamped out, the environment could support a price jump, but that's irrelevant so long as illicit downloading is alive and well,"

To put it in human terms, piracy is keeping the price of songs low.

Can we please put to bed the myth that piracy drives up the cost of software and content? It doesn't.

Don't tell anyone, here's the letter (1)

Swamii (594522) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804094)

Dear iTunes et al,

We want more money because we are greedy corporate money mongers. Raise your prices or we'll drag you to court and prevent you from selling our hip, fun, energetic teeny pop music.

Sincerely,
The Recording Industry Association of America

Eh? (1)

DrXym (126579) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804095)

Somewhere (legal) sells MP3s? But assuming its downloadable music in general, to buy an album of MP3 or AAC songs costs almost as much as a physical CD. How can the labels possibly expect people to pay more? Doing that will simply drive them back to the P2P networks.

Why are they even complaining? They almost certainly get as much money from legitimate online sales as they would from CDs, especially since the cost of distribution is passed onto the likes of Apple, Napster et al.

Classic move by dinosaurs... (1)

William_Lee (834197) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804101)

It looks like the industry are willing to do their best to kill the golden goose as a gosling. 99 cents is a very powerful psychological pricepoint with consumers. I would guess raising prices above it at this early stage in the online legal music game would make many people think twice about downloading and paying for it.

It seems the music industry is determined to continue to gouge customers. They never let CD prices fall significantly as production costs fell, and it looks like they are going to be just as thick headed with a nascent industry that needs support to continue to grow.

Great job guys!

Bad title: does not involve MP3s (3, Informative)

AtariAmarok (451306) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804106)

The files sold being referred to are mostly protected WMA, AAC, or Real files. Maybe some non-tech idiots think that all digital music files are MP3s, but these are the same idiots who think that all picture files are JPG's and GIF is a kind of peanut butter.

MP3??? (1)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804107)

Are any of the services they discussed actually distributing in mp3 format, or have the Slashdot editors just become too confused by all these "technical" terms? Online music seems like a reasonable alternative description.

Looking Better Every Day (1)

techsoldaten (309296) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804113)

Not making any claims about right and wrong here.

With prices on the rise and the cost to legally fill an 40GB iPod in the 5 digits, the Napster trick looks better and better every day.

M

Profit Margins (5, Insightful)

yetdog (760930) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804116)

What REALLY pisses me off about this whole sham, is the fact that digital downloads are already pure profit for the labels. No packaging, distribution, or printing. Pure profit. And it's just not enough to fill their bloated CEO's coffers. Sue your customers for downloading illegally, but charge them an arm and a leg to do it the "right" way. Piss off, RIAA. You'll never see another dime from me.

Price Elasticity (4, Informative)

irhtfp (581712) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804143)

If they raise prices, it will drive more people back into Kazaaland. At the margin, some people will be willing to pay $.99 but not $1.09. The curve that describes this behavior is by no means linear. I would think that Apple has done a fair bit of research to determine where the optimal price point on this curve is.

It will no doubt change as competition (i.e. Walmart, et. al.) enters the market. It's one of the most common fallacies in business to raise your prices to make more money (or conversely to have a sale). It takes careful research and testing to determine the correct price point to maximize profts. You can't just decide to raise more prices to get more money.

Hmph (3, Insightful)

delta_avi_delta (813412) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804147)

The prices of songs via mp3 are already maintained at an artificially high price. This ensures that the price of downloading an album via mp3 is roughly synonymous with the price of purchasing the album in a large retailer. Since the user is paying for "shipping", and packaging and materials are non-existant, it seems to me that even dividing the pie between the distributor, the record companies, and the artists, there's more than enough to go around as is. There's no justification for asking us to pay more for mp3s. Perhaps if they paid for our cable connection...

Same old tactics? (1)

philkerr (180450) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804165)

I wonder if this push for a price increase is to put a dampner on the existing on-line players as they did with the CARP [copyright.gov] act a few years ago regarding streaming.

The problem, as the established media companies see things, with these new electronic outlets they have problems excerting their marketing influences to pimp their latest one-hit manufactured artist.

If they can put the breaks on things until *they* control the market then this is better for them. Its not really an issue concering margins as all the big players seem to be reporting big profits.

I was hoping... (3, Insightful)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804169)

I was hoping to see the end of the album format, with the exception of concept albums or soundtracks or long classical works and such. Artists would just release a new song when they had one worth peddling.

Wal-Mart to the rescue! (4, Insightful)

Shivetya (243324) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804181)

Actually I wonder what kind of contract Wal-Mart has with the major music labels? I would suspect that any increase in fee would first require voiding or extensive reworking of the contracts that are outstanding.

My concern, if the labels get an increase in their fee what is too stop these retailers silently increasing their "costs" behind the scene?

Frankly the labels get too much of a slice of the fee as it is. I would like to see how much is actually given to the artist per sale. I would suspect that a lot of older music gives less than a cent per sold song to the original artist.

Higher than 99 cents? Only if I can get it in the format and quality I want. Only if I have a permanent right to have the song at my disposal. Get near 1.99 and it they can kiss the business model good-bye - which may be what they are after so later down the road the can release their own services.

All this begs the question, if the per song fee increases what happens to the all-you-listen-to sites like Rhaposdy and Napster?

What, me worry? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11804183)

Napster still has unlimited DRM free music downloads for $10 per month. =)

not MP3 - AAC (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11804185)

Apple doesn't sell MP3 files, only AAC & Audible.

btw, the link doesn't work either

Can't be done (4, Interesting)

redune45 (194113) | more than 9 years ago | (#11804206)

I don't know if people agree with me, but here's my rant.

Currently on iTunes a whole album costs $9.99, now I can walk into a music store and get the actual CD for $14.99.

Personally, if its only five bucks, I'd much rather have the CD. You get a pernament backup, the song lyrics and all of the other extras.

If you buy it on iTunes, you have to make sure to burn it yourself or lose it forever, and you don't get the liner notes etc.

Now, if the price per song increases, I'm guessing that the price of an album would increase as well. So that brings the price of buying the album online very close to the price of buying it from a brick and mortar store. So the arugment for buying online is even smaller.

It will be interesting to see what happens here.
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