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iTunes Might Lose Labels

CowboyNeal posted more than 8 years ago | from the different-strokes dept.

Media (Apple) 614

Dreamwalkerofyore writes "According to the New York Times, the iTunes music store might have to change its 99 cents per song policy or risk losing a huge amount of songs due to recent disputes with record companies, who demand an increase in the cost. From the article: 'If [Mr. Jobs] loses, the one-price model that iTunes has adopted 99 cents to download any song could be replaced with a more complex structure that prices songs by popularity. A hot new single, for example, could sell for $1.49, while a golden oldie could go for substantially less than 99 cents.'"

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614 comments

great! (5, Insightful)

j.blechert (726395) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415217)

good idea!
might change that 'it's new - it must be good' thingy people have in their heads..

Re:great! (5, Insightful)

aussie_a (778472) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415253)

Actually it may just re-inforce the "Oh it's more expensive so it must be better" meme people have in their heads.

Re:great! (4, Insightful)

Feyr (449684) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415291)

or like me, it'll reinforce the "it's too expensive, fuck it" idea.

better stick with web radios

Re:great! (1, Informative)

Jonboy X (319895) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415307)

I do not think that word means what you think it means.

Meme: "a unit of cultural inheritance, hypothesized as analogous to the particulate gene and as naturally selected by virtue of its 'phenotypic' consequences on its own survival and replication in the cultural environment."

Re:great! (1, Insightful)

F452 (97091) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415378)

The original poster's use of "meme" may have been borderline, but you certainly haven't enlightened anybody by regurgitating some impenetrable definition of the concept.

Great! (3, Insightful)

lukewarmfusion (726141) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415218)

Then I might actually consider buying music, given that I rarely buy "new" or "popular" music.

Re:Great! (2, Insightful)

wasted time (891410) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415255)

I agree. Let all the rabid pop fans pay to support the ridiculous amount of promotion money and bling thrown at their idols.

Re:Great! (1)

PsychicX (866028) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415256)

Yeah. Seems like the first sensible thing the record companies have demanded in many a year. Maybe it's the beginning of a new trend?

Nah.

Include more indies (5, Insightful)

yintercept (517362) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415323)

A variable pricing model would be fine with me. If iTunes were to include more indies and let each artist set their price, they we would end up with a dynamic model.

It seems to me that the primary problem with the music industry is the history of price fixing.

Re:Great! (5, Insightful)

deltagreen (522610) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415349)

$1.49 might be too much for the top end, but a price substantially lower than 99 cents could indeed be a step in the right direction. Since plenty of the merchandise sold online is already in 'the long tail' [wired.com] , an increase of sales in that segment, might show more clearly to the record companies two things: 1) Hits don't necessarily have the same pulling power in online stores as in the local store with a limited selection of 300 albums 2) Maybe selling three copies of a song at 75 cents is better than one at $1.49?

Re:Great! (1)

shawn(at)fsu (447153) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415362)

Thats one of the things I hate about the music industry in general, no mater how old or how new a song/album is you probably going to pay the same amount. You can't tell me that "Just a Perfect Day" (bad heroin trip in Trainspotting) should cost the same as the osng that just won a grammy for best new shi... song.

Re:Great! (1)

ppz003 (797487) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415392)

Thats one of the things I hate about the music industry in general, no mater how old or how new a song/album is you probably going to pay the same amount. You can't tell me that "Just a Perfect Day" (bad heroin trip in Trainspotting) should cost the same as the osng that just won a grammy for best new shi... song.

Well, that was my interpretation of this article. They want all songs to now cost $1.49, with the extra 50 cents going straight to their pockets.

Re:Great! (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415414)

How sweet. Such innocent naivety in the shark pool of economics. What they meant to say is that some songs could be cheaper than others, not necessarily cheaper than $0.99.

It's quite simple when you think about it: They are not demanding higher prices to discourage buyers from getting the popular tunes and steer them to obscure songs. They're asking for more because they want a net gain. Guess who's going to pay for that. The low end will have to pay for the reduced number of sales of high priced songs, so the price range for anything above garage band level is going to go from $0.99 to $1.49. The few songs which will sell for less you could probably get for free from a crappy website where a rightfully starving artist put them in a hopeless promotion attempt.

Yeah well (5, Insightful)

teslatug (543527) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415219)

It was working so well, it was about time they fucked it up.

Wow (3, Insightful)

EvilMonkeySlayer (826044) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415221)

Great way for the labels and Apple to discourage people from using legal methods for downloading music.

Re:Wow (5, Informative)

aussie_a (778472) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415276)

Great way for the labels and Apple to discourage people from using legal methods for downloading music.

How is Apple to blame? According to the article summary (can't see actual article) Apple is fighting to protect it's current model, and may be forced to (or to lose a large chunk of it's inventory). I'd hardly say Apple is to blame for that.

Re:Wow (1)

Breogan (730642) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415398)

If they indeed drop the price of older titles, I think it's a very interesting move. I don't like much of what's being released nowadays and almost all the stuff I listen is several years old.

For me... (0, Troll)

rbarreira (836272) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415223)

If they want to make me use iTunes, they'll have to price each song at less than 0 cents...

Re:For me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415277)

Then start singin', bitch.

Re:For me... (1)

rbarreira (836272) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415319)

Look... I know many musicians and they all download songs in the net. I've seen lots of interviews to musicians where they say they use p2p programs too. So don't try to lecture on me :)

Most bands are happy about their songs being on the net, it makes the band more widely known. The bigger bands are already rich enough.

Alright (1, Flamebait)

SpaceCadetTrav (641261) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415227)

Queue the endless whining about how songs should cost 10 cents.

Re:Alright (1)

pandaba (38513) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415356)

Actually they should set up a flexible pricing scheme which would start at 10 to 20 cents, with the price going up based on the bitrate of the file, capping at around 1.00-2.00 if you're downloading a lossless file.

If the DRM wasn't too hefty, then this pricing scheme would severely reduce the number of people using the P2P services.

You gotta wonder how much a site like allofmp3 is making when they price tracks at roughly .10 per song.

The labels could sell via their own sites, and cut out the middleman of Apple, Napster, et al. And convert millions of file sharers into customers again.

$99 wont last forever (2, Insightful)

dcstimm (556797) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415228)

But come on record lables, get itunes popular so people are addicted then when people are hooked change the prices. dont do it yet! (even though most people are hooked)

Re:$99 wont last forever (0)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415275)

But come on record lables, get itunes popular so people are addicted then when people are hooked change the prices. dont do it yet! (even though most people are hooked)

While the sales of downloaded music has exploded, last I read any stats in the press, it still accounts for less than 5% of total music sales.

Even if Apple has dominance in legal downloaded music, it's just a tiny slice of the pie.

Re:$99 wont last forever (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415326)

$99 is a bit steep don't you think?

Re:$99 wont last forever (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415353)

Yes, the overblown price should fall soon.

Geeeze (4, Insightful)

QaBOjk (614183) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415235)

Apple goes out of its way and makes a system so that the record industry CAN profit from online media, and then they whine their not making enough! shoulda stuck with P2P, not like they're ever happy.

Re:Geeeze (2, Insightful)

aussie_a (778472) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415290)

That's the American capitalist economy. A company can't simply make a profit, they must make a growing profit. I'd say this is a new trend, but I don't know if it is. I can say though, that's it's a bad trend, and will eventually explode in companies' faces.

To be fair to us Americans (3, Interesting)

benhocking (724439) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415330)

I think most capitalist economies are dominated with companies that subscribe to this business model. Of course, with the global marketplace it's not very easy to say where our economy stops and another country's economy starts.

Re:Geeeze (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415377)

There's no need to increase prices to generate a growing profit from selling music through iTMS. The volume of downloads is increasing aproximately exponentially as it is.

Re:Geeeze (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415411)

A seller will increase it's price until enough buyers stop demanding.

Re:Geeeze (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415410)

It's a trend caused by day traders. If you want traders, day and firms, to invest in you you have to be growing. And since your competition has half it's net worth via traders you'll have to do the same to keep up.
It's why the stock market is a bad idea overall.

Re:Geeeze (1)

BewireNomali (618969) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415420)

Let's say you're aussie a inc. Would you accept flat profits over the course of your life as a company?

Better question: as a worker are you/do you turn down raises when they come your way? Don't you, in fact, work towards them?

How is this different?

Phone companies sell ringtones for $3-4 dollars; and they sell them by the millions. this would lead me to believe that songs themselves are underpriced at a dollar. The market supports $3-4 dollar songs, so record companies should indeed seek the model that maximizes revenue and is supported by sales.

It was only a matter of time (1)

aussie_a (778472) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415236)

I'm surprised Apple was able to keep the fixed price as long as they did. I wonder if forced, if they will seek to make it easier for independant artists to have their music sold through the store (most likely at a higher percentage for google), in an attempt to offer more content for a lower price.

Do they already support independant artists (and I mean more then a token amount)? If so, then that's great. I hadn't heard.

Re:It was only a matter of time (5, Informative)

the_unknown_soldier (675161) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415354)

Cd baby [cdbaby.com] Works very hard at getting independant music on the ITMS. Cdbaby works as an middle party between the artists who don't really know what to do and Apple who don't have the will to deal with a million artists on individually. Cdbaby then gives the artist a ridiculously large percentage, iirc they can end up with 60c from a 99c song sale.

good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415237)

go independent artists all the way. we don't need no stinkin RIAA.

"Its," damn it! (2, Informative)

MooBob (27649) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415240)

According to the New York Times, the iTunes music store might have to change it's 99 cents per song policy
Change its policy! You wouldn't type "... might have to change it is 99 cents per song policy."

Re:"Its," damn it! (1)

FuzzzyLogik (592766) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415269)

Grammar apparently isn't taught as well these days in public education. Makes me so happy I'm going to be a high school english teacher, I'll have to deal with this garbage every year until those monkey's in the lower grades start teaching the students correctly and/or ADHD has been wiped out.

Re:"Its," damn it! (1)

FuzzzyLogik (592766) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415288)

Son of a... Even I fscked it up. "monkey's" shoulda been "monkeys" ... so much for possessive vs. plural eh? lol

Re:"Its," damn it! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415359)

First:
Makes me so happy I'm going to be a high school english teacher
And then:
Son of a... Even I fscked it up. "monkey's" shoulda been "monkeys" ... so much for possessive vs. plural eh? Lol

Should of at least passed high school English if you're going to be teaching it, eh?

Re:"Its," damn it! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415430)

Should of at least passed high school English

Oops! I'm a moron too!!! I should have written should have, not should of.
Sorry. I guess I should be more careful when I act like a dick.

Re:"Its," damn it! (1)

Dolohov (114209) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415297)

Which monkeys, exactly?

Re:"Its," damn it! (5, Funny)

big_groo (237634) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415270)

Change its policy! You wouldn't type "... might have to change it is 99 cents per song policy."

Your fighting a loosing battle. Its impossible to win when most of Slashdot doesnt' even have a basic grasp of english to good. Chose you're battles wisely...

Re:"Its," damn it! (-1, Redundant)

HeroreV (869368) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415345)

You're fighting
losing battle
It's impossible
doesn't even
grasp of English
too good
Choose your battles

Did I catch the joke?

Re:"Its," damn it! (1)

gkuz (706134) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415370)

Did I catch the joke?

No.

Re:"Its," damn it! (1)

Dolohov (114209) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415282)

Is it just me, or has the Times's editing just gone to shit these last few years? I'm constantly catching stuff like this (with no way to easily report it) and in a recent MRI article their author actually said that stainless steel was non-ferromagnetic!

Re:"Its," damn it! (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415418)

You mean the Times' editing?

Re:"Its," damn it! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415292)

Agreed. Those who are confused can receive guidance at:
http://www.apostrophe.fsnet.co.uk/ [fsnet.co.uk]

Furthermore, the word "number" is more appropriate than "amount".

Of all the things! (1)

JNighthawk (769575) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415303)

Of all the things to whine about, you chose that! It's ridiculous, since it makes logical sense! Yes, I realize that "it's" is incorrect in this case, but it's not a terrible mistake, since for normal nouns, you just toss on an "'s" to make it possessive.

Re:Of all the things! (1)

syrinx (106469) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415332)

Yes, I realize that "it's" is incorrect in this case, but it's not a terrible mistake, since for normal nouns, you just toss on an "'s" to make it possessive.

Yeah, don't be so hard on him's mistake.

Re:"Its," damn it! (-1, Offtopic)

slughead (592713) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415311)

Change its policy! You wouldn't type "... might have to change it is 99 cents per song policy."

iTMS is alive, it just has no gender.

Re:"Its," damn it! (1)

computerdude33 (890573) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415316)

Ohhhhh... If you want it to be possessive,
It's just "I-T-S."
But if it's supposed to be a contraction,
Then it's "I-T-apostrophe-S,"
Scalawag.

Courtesy of the HR Wiki [hrwiki.org] .

Re:"Its," damn it! (-1)

salmacis2 (643788) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415366)

Wrong, moran. "Policy" is possessive, therefore the apostrophe is correct.

Re:"Its," damn it! (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415421)

But "it" is a pronoun. Not a noun. Therefore rather than add an apostrophe and an 's', we replace it with a possessive pronoun (i.e. "its").

No comment needed really.. (1)

Galileo430 (614516) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415243)

It's just further proof of the greed of the record industry.

Remember (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415245)

Making money is not good enough. To be successful, you have to make MORE money. It's economics 101.

Lost a customer (1)

FuzzzyLogik (592766) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415249)

Well, then the music industry just lost another customer... Again. I only came back to buying music because they made it affordable to me and I could get songs I wanted one at a time instead of on a cd where there might only be 1 good song I liked.

I don't bame apple for this, the music industry is a bunch of money hungry assholes. I'll keep buying apple products, I love my ipod and i love my powerbook.

Re:Lost a customer (2, Insightful)

aussie_a (778472) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415367)

Well, then the music industry just lost another customer...

Pffft, they don't care about you. You're most likely too educated for them anyway. They want impulse buyers, not those who actually care about copyright. Their war on p2p is merely: 1. another revenue source, or
2. a publicity stunt, or
3. a lever to pressure their congressmen into creating more draconian laws, or
4. to reduce the "cool" effect (with questionable success) of p2p, or
5. an effort to shame some downloaders into buying the music they've illegally downloaded, or
6. two or more of the above.

$0.99? Yeah, right. (5, Insightful)

Nimey (114278) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415252)

I expect that if this goes through there will be few if any songs that go down in price.

Re: $0.99? Yeah, right. (1)

arturov (447349) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415333)

This is absolutely true. They already know that people are willing to pay $.99 for any old song.

Greed, greed, greed... (5, Insightful)

Cirrocco (466158) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415257)

The 99 cents per song you already pay is a bit much, especially considering there is NO physical packaging, shipping costs, storefronts with employees and power bills, ad infinitum.

I really LIKE iTunes, and I *KNOW* how to steal music if I want to. I really LIKE the fact that I can buy a specific song for a pittance on a whim instead of hoping someone will upload it to the Usenet.

It's not that $1.49 is too much, but it just shows that they will try to reach a price that people will accept, however grudgingly. But the $1 mark is a psychological barrier; once they reach that, people will start to think, "Is this song worth $1.49?" and might not buy it after all.

In any case, good luck to 'em. I don't buy any new stuff anyway. Most of it is crap pushed by the payola artists.

Re:Greed, greed, greed... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415368)

The 99 cents per song you already pay is a bit much

Yep. I won't pay a buck for a song to come in from out of the cold (since all music is free right now via p2p). I might pay ten cents. Maybe a quarter, but I doubt it.

Re:Greed, greed, greed... (4, Funny)

arose (644256) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415396)

No power bills? Are the servers powered by the RDF?

Re:Greed, greed, greed... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415425)

I *KNOW* how to steal music if I want to.

Really? You *KNOW* how to steal music? Is there more to that than just walking into a music store, stuffing a CD into your pocket and walking out of the door?

Greedy bastards (5, Insightful)

tinrobot (314936) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415261)

Like it costs so much to record a song in this day of digital recording. 99 cents is plenty.

The record labels pretty much killed CDs by charging 20 bucks each for them, now they'll kill this outlet as well.

Re:Greedy bastards (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415342)

It's ridiculous to suggest that the cost of a song should be in any way tied to the cost of recording it. Heck, why spring for that expensive recording of a guy playing a Stradivarius with an orchestra when I can get some thrifty a capella stuff?

I frankly think that record companies are only part of the problem. Big-name artists get way too much money. Should we compensate the writer of a catchy tune 100x more than a doctor, teacher, etc.? It's obviously a simplistic argument, but hey, if pop stars were paid like teachers an iTunes song would cost about the same as P2P.

Re:Greedy bastards (1)

RevengeOfPoopJuggler (872968) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415383)

It's not just the recording, it's the fleet of Ferraris and Porsches that are needed to cart the producers and execs to and from the studio. Remember, the quality of the recording is directly proportional to the value of the car that the producers drive. You want the best possible sound quality don't you?!?

Payola (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415263)

1. Sign a busty, untalented ethnic pop diva at your record company
2. Pay radio stations around the country hoards of money to play her phony 'hits' [villagevoice.com]
3. Declare 'hits' too popular for existing iTunes pricing structure
4. Profit!

iTunes monopoly (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415266)

The only way to sell a song online if you are a musician and want to have DRM is on iTunes.

You can't sell it any other way, it's true that there are freely usable DRM formats that are supported by every portable player other than iPod. Unfortunately, iPod has 90%+ of the market share, and for DRM it only supports Fairplay.

Sorry that people don't realize it, but independent musicians are screwed because they cant sell protected songs for the price they want.

But whatever, people will never ever see anything wrong in anything Apple does.

Even Microsoft's DRM format is more open than Apple's!

Re:iTunes monopoly (2, Interesting)

Tidal Flame (658452) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415347)

Where are my mod points when I need them? This is a good point.

Frankly, no DRM is much better than any DRM... especially considering most DRM can be circumvented very easily. But I can see how not using DRM would be frightening for an independant artist. You're potentially giving away all your work, and you've got no income from albums, etc.

That said, is there no way to create your own Apple DRM'd songs? None at all? Do most independant artists rely on DRM, or are they more reliant on a small group of dedicated fans who will pay for the music to support the band?

this news reads: (5, Funny)

w3weasel (656289) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415267)

This news reads (translated from the original RIAA BS) "Allofmp3.com will be adding new servers and registering new bank accounts to deal with the massively increased demand".

About time! (1)

Dolohov (114209) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415268)

I'm all for it -- most "hot new singles" suck. I like iTunes chiefly as a way to get hard-to-find stuff. (Incidentally, that was the main reason I used "free" music sites and programs)

I'm also all for experimenting to find a good price point. "Simple and uniform pricing" is only good if you actually have the right price. 99c a song is still way overpriced for most of the catalog, and I think they'll find that they'd make more money around 75c or 50c than they do now. With classical music, this is particularly the case -- there are umpteen different recordings of the same piece, and the current price is somewhat prohibitive to getting multiple versions to compare.

(And why do I get the feeling Lack made a proctologist joke?)

Up, Up, Up and Away!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415281)

Maybe the labels will blame gas prices....

Add me (2, Interesting)

Tidal Flame (658452) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415285)

Add me to the ranks of people who are no doubt turned off from using the iTunes music store because of this. I've been considering it for a long time, but if they're going to be increasing prices for new songs, count me out. I don't listen to much "popular" music anyway, but on the ocassion that I do want a new song, I'm not going to pay a dollar and a half for it.

Looks like I'll be sticking for P2P. And, despite what the RIAA says, I tend to buy the album if I really like it.

Automatic Pricing System (2, Interesting)

ZP-Blight (827688) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415286)

I would like to see an automatic pricing system where the song price may range from 10c to $2 and the price fluxates automatically according to the number of buyers. A "little" like the stock exchange, but with caps on the bottom/top prices.

That way, the really popular songs (as decided by the users themselves) would inflate in price and the more obscure songs will lower in price, which could give them more exposure which may then raise the price back up.

This could work well if Apple would expose the system used to calculate the pricing and the stats for each track downloaded. It would make things interesting.

Let free-market rule!

Ignores the long tail... (5, Interesting)

mjh (57755) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415287)

This pricing scheme is not likely to work out well for the music industry. It ignores the long tail [wired.com] . From the wired article:
An analysis of the sales data and trends from these services and others like them shows that the emerging digital entertainment economy is going to be radically different from today's mass market. If the 20th century entertainment industry was about hits, the 21st will be equally about misses.
If you're the music industry, and you give a discount to the misses, you're going to end up making less money. The number of sales of millions misses outranks the number of sales of the top 20 hits.

Of course, this could be their goal: to make iTunes less profitable and drive them out of business, then swoop in and offer a different service... Or maybe they want to make iTunes less profitible in order to drive music consumers back to purcashing CDs... ??? </conspiracy_theory>

The price is already $1.42 for me (2, Informative)

Andy_R (114137) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415293)

If you live in Britain, iTunes songs cost 79p, or just over $1.42 at today's exchange rate.

AllOfMp3 (5, Insightful)

Rew190 (138940) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415295)

Let them do it. Sites like AllOfMp3.com will just get more business (which appears to be totally legal). Why would anyone buy a crappy compressed song for $1.50? At that price it costs as much (or more!) as a regular CD with artwork and no compression!

I'm still waiting for the day when the general population knows about sites like AllOfMp3, where you can download an entire album in just about every popular format for around a dollar. You can even preview an entire album before purchasing, and the selection is pretty decent. Not as good as iTunes, but probably enough to satisfy a good chuck of iTMS users.

And given all this, the record companies want to make themselves look worse? Hilarious! Let them!

Re:AllOfMp3 (1)

syrinx (106469) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415360)

Let them do it. Sites like AllOfMp3.com will just get more business (which appears to be totally legal).

How is it there in Russia? I would love to take a trip to Moscow or St. Petersburg... hopefully soon, though I'm heading to New Zealand first...

I'm assuming you live in Russia, since you said AllofMP3 was legal. You *do* know that while AllofMP3 is "probably" legal if you live in Russia, it's not at all legal if you don't, right? (I've used it myself when I can't find a song I want on iTunes, and it's a nice service, but I don't kid myself that it's legal.)

"One-price model" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415296)

I've got my own "one-price" model. And it's considerably less than $0.99. And I don't have to worry about DRM.

Of course they should raise the prices (1)

ncttrnl (773936) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415299)

I feel sorry for the poor hip hop stars. Do you have any idea how much it costs to insure a Ferrari?

Same old story (4, Interesting)

Y-Crate (540566) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415302)

If this new policy is adopted, expect to see sales drop or at least level-off while piracy increases. Up until this point it has been a fair deal for FairPlay, and if these record companies demand more money for doing absolutely nothing but allowing Apple to sell the products and do all of the heavy lifting for them (and barely break even on it as Apple does with the iTunes store) they really are out of touch with reality.

They have found the sweet spot in the market and simply collect the checks. But the corprate mantra of constantly growing profits has taken over. Which is not a bad thing, but it should have manifested itself in the recruitment of new musicians, not the raising of prices for the hell of it. That of course, would take effort, and when you make more money off of an album than the artist does - after you have merely loaned them the money to make their next album - you get used to screwing people over as much as you can.

If banks worked like the music industry, you would pay 90% of your paycheck to whatever bank gave you a student loan 20 years ago - 15 years after they were paid off.

Idiots (4, Funny)

Darth Maul (19860) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415305)

Music executive: "Hey, we're making a ton of cash money without any distribution or production costs. In fact, we don't really do anything at all, and get rich. I know, LET'S SCREW THAT UP."

This isn't news. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415312)

Recording industry greed yet again threatens the viability of a successful distribution model.

Yawn. The only thing that's changed is the distribution model.

I hope Jobs tells them to stick it where the sun don't shine. The iPod army he's been building for the last few years isn't just going to throw away its iPods and replace them with players that can handle Windows Media DRM'd music-- those people will just go back to p2p to get what they want.

The people have spoken, and they're not going to put up with price gouging anymore. If they won't let us buy it for cheap, we'll just take it for free and without compunction.

Damn them all (0, Redundant)

Enrique1218 (603187) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415315)

Money gouging low life. Geez , I might as well pirate. I going to download my copy of limewire. Give them hell, Steve

Not an Apple lover, but.... WTF (1)

DemENtoR (582030) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415320)

Not the biggest lover of Apple (the company and Jobs, not the products). But I really thought they did some good things with the ITunes store. WTF is wrong with the music lables, they have an effective distribution system, that works today better then their own POS services they tried, and they are just trying to kill it. It's not like they aren't making a killing on it right now.

Music industry is living in another decade (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415331)

I can't figure out how the music industry alliance stays around. How is it that you can go to a discount retailer, and a soundtrack to a older movie costs twice as much as the movie itself? It's like that thing in Japan where artists bypassed their label to get on iTunes store because their labels were holding out for more money.. If an American band tried to do that they'd be drowned in legal action and such. 10,000 sales at .99 is more money than 4,000 at $1.49, certainly more than 10,000 at $.00 if folks give up on the whole legal download concept due to costs..

great news to the P2P (1)

rawwa.venoise (881755) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415334)

If a cd has a average of 12 songs and the cd proce is 20-25 dollars we can count with a price per song of 1.6 - 2 dollars per song. Given the phisical media costs, the publicity, the distribution and so on they still can make a high profit using this format.
Why they can't leave with a 99 cents per song policy if the costs are simply 0 (well, they have to license the MP3 format to the Fraunhofer if they use this format. The quality of these files IS ALWAYS lower then the phisical medium, so
What tha fuck they want? More money and even less cost? No wonder P2P networks get more and more people downloading music. I could expect this to be be a good thing if not so popular artists where selling music for less then 99 cents. But the music industry is a hungry dog and i don't bet a hungry dog will sit in front of a tasty stake without taking a bite!!!

Variable pricing would work for me (1)

MarkWatson (189759) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415337)

At least half of the songs that I have purchased on the iTunes music store have been old songs - my typical use case is that something happens during the day to remind me of some old song I used to love - then later I take a minute to buy it for 99 cents; paying less than 99 cents would also work well for me :-)

Prices (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415346)

Ok, we're talking about cost.

What about value?

Lossy audio (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13415369)

Lossy audio is not worth 99 cents, even if you own an ipod. Its only there to sell ipods to people who could tell the difference because they are oblivious to audio compression schemes, and of course make it a conveniant way to add to your ipod library, its not there to actually sell music.

If the new popular tunes become more expenisve.. (1)

mysterious_w (905180) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415371)

.. it may push people back to p2p. Hell, 99p or cents a song is still too much for me, it would have to be 20p to satsify my cheap ass.

Greed (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415376)

Phfft!

Why does every corporaton on the planet need to kill the golden goose when its found?

The labels are taking a gamble (1)

doc modulo (568776) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415382)

They're bluffing to get a bigger slice of people's money. These are the kinds of idiots that are too greedy to make money.

However they're bluffing with Apple and everyone knows they've got the lower hand.

Idiots are kind of cute, like watching a kid learning to walk.

John Cage and 4'33"" (1)

putko (753330) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415393)

It doesn't make sense to charge $.99 for John Cage's completely silent piece [wikipedia.org] . Apple is making a step in the right direction.

what about walmart? (1)

the_2nd_coming (444906) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415394)

or other WMA based companies?

I think the Record companies are trying to torpedo Apple so that tehy can use the WMA stuff which is highly unpopular despite Windows dominance.

Albums vs. single songs (2, Insightful)

vijayiyer (728590) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415409)

I think the recording industry is finding that people are buying 1 or 2 songs from a given album, and paying 2 bucks for it. This contrasts with the $20 people used to pay for CDs. Instead of fixing the music so that albums are cohesive and compelling (compare Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon to today's "albums"), they think that they can skirt the basic laws of supply and demand.

Good! (1)

RAMMS+EIN (578166) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415417)

While the submitter gave a very negative spin to this, I actually see it as a good thing.

Popular songs sell for higher prices, generating more revenue to the ones making and distributing them. Maybe this will encourage bands to create more songs that people actually like.

Less popular songs will actually be a lot cheaper. Many of my friends don't really care how new the music that they listen to is. They'll just as happily listen to a song from the 1960s as to one that's just out, if it suits their tastes. With the masses probably still going for the newer songs, my friends would probably be getting their old songs for a lot less then they're paying now.

Finally, some people are obsessed with the idea that 99 cents is all they want to pay for a song. These people will be driven off iTunes and into piracy. This way, the labels can witness the effect of price on sales in action, and this time, it will be crystal clear that their pricing policy is the cause of it.

Or, if an exodus of buyers doesn't happen, that clearly demonstrates that people _are_ willing to pony up what the labels ask for the music, and the people who engage in piracy wouldn't buy the music at any price, despite many of them screaming that it's all because the RIAA charges too much.

Dang it (5, Funny)

Phantasmo (586700) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415419)

Dear Slashdot,

Please help us think of ways to blame this on piracy. We're really stuck on this one!

Sincerely,

The RIAA

So ... The Music Industry Wants Apple to Up Prices (1)

hattig (47930) | more than 8 years ago | (#13415424)

Isn't this the same music industry that earlier this week said that Apple iTMS was expensive and all that?

Quite why they want to destroy the most popular source of revenue online (because people won't move from iTMS once they are used to it, they simply won't buy the music that isn't available).

iPod users are increasing by 6m every quarter at the moment. A music label would be retarded to not want to be on iTMS, even if only 1 in 10 iPod owners ever buys something from it, that's 2.4m new potential customers every year. Better than other online stores, where the potential is what? 200k new potential customers every year?

The music industry simply wants to get more money out of the consumer. On the other hand some music simply isn't worth 99p a track, and I can understand that the latest, just released, music should be higher priced. Still, I imagine that Apple will have to half-acquiesce - expect tracks to be 79p to $1.29 in the future on there ... and most of the decent stuff to be at the higher end of the price scale.

Me? I'll keep on buying good music online or in Fopp for between £3 and £7 an album, and actually getting the CD which I can own for life. No losing music to a hard drive crash, no limitations on the duration I can listen to it to (god, those services are doing *so* good, lol), no DRM, no lossy compression until I rip it to my media drive at the quality *I* want.
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