Originally Posted by Tulkas
Actually, that isn't really accurate. MS used their dominance of the PC market to force OEMs to not promote Netscape. They 'encouraged' the OEMs to only place the IE icon on the desktop and to avoid placing the Netscape icon there. They further 'encouraged' some not to even install Netscape. Incentives, like financial subsidies for marketing, were generally reported, and the threat was that MS would pull these marketing dollars. There were also claims of MS threatening some OEMs with losing their Windows license for not playing ball.
You mean they tried to use their monopoly in os to give away a browser in order to put Netscape out of business. Because that is exactly what you are saying.
This is not very different than Apple using their position to 'encourage' the labels from not taking part in Amazon's promotions. The reports are that Apple uses it's dominance in online music sales to encourage labels not to take part in Amazon's promotions. The reported threat would be Apple would refuse to provide marketing support through iTunes for those songs that were offered in Amazon's promotions. Sound familiar? Play ball with us, do not do freely do business with a competitor or you will suffer consequences.
Why should Apple be FORCED to put extra advertising dollars into music they aren't first to get?
As far as defining a monopoly, and whether Apple's dominance in online music is enough to be legally defined as a monopoly, it is clear that they certainly could be. A market monopoly doesn't have to have 100% of the market or even very close to 100%.
No, a monopoly would have to have at least near 100% market share to be classed as a monopoly, otherwise it is just the biggest player.
It simply needs enough dominance to have significant influence on others access that market. If they was 'Steve's Corner Record Store' then a threat to pull marketing support if labels promoted with Amazon wouldn't be a threat. Only Apple's dominance makes it a threat.
Having the monopoly isn't illegal either, by the way. Abusing your market position (be it 60% or ~100%) to stifle innovation/competition is the illegal bit.
Apple only has about 70% of the DIGITAL ONLY downloads, and the music labels have already shown that to not be enough to "control things" as the labels still have ultimate control of the content and have been able to dictate that Apple introduce variable pricing, amongst other things.
This whole thing is a crock.