French Lawmakers approve Bill threatening Apple's iTunes, iPod

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 2014
French lawmakers voted Tuesday to approve an online copyright bill that would break open the exclusive formats behind Apple's market-leading iTunes music store and iPod players, reports the Associated Press



The draft law -- which also introduces new penalties for music pirates -- would force Apple Computer Inc., Sony Corp. and Microsoft Corp. to share proprietary anti-copy technologies (DRM software) so that rivals can offer compatible services and players.



Lawmakers in the National Assembly, France's lower house, approved the bill 296-193. The legislation now has to be debated and voted by the Senate -- a process expected to begin in May, the AP said.



According to the same report, the new legislation would also introduce penalties ranging from euro38 to euro150 ($50 to $180) for those caught pirating music or movies at home and euro3,750 ($4,600) for hackers who disable copy-protection systems. Those caught distributing software for online piracy face fines of up to euro300,000 ($365,000) and jail terms.



Apple has made no comments on the decision, as of yet, and still reserves the right to pull out of France entirely, allowing it to proceed with its closed iTunes + iPod ecosystem.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 107
    This is crap!!!
  • Reply 2 of 107
    crees!crees! Posts: 501member
    Ditto.. F the French. They can get their scrawny butts up and go to a store to buy music.
  • Reply 3 of 107
    Leave it to the French to pass anti-capitalism legislation. My prediction is that Apple pulls out of France to protect it's DRM. If the EU passes similar legislation then Apple might have to reconsider their business model.
  • Reply 4 of 107
    I find that's really a stupid thing.



    I create a music player like iPod, I make it very nice and appealing, a lot of people love it, other don't. Great.



    So I create a music store to feed it, a lot of people use it, other don't. Great.



    Then, going beyond the normal and good sense that should guide a Company, I make a gift to all the competitors, breaking the solid link between my player and my music store. So that all the investment on research, my ideas and everything I put on my creation is - literally - burned.

    Stupid.



    I had a nice idea, I could realize it, so I should be punished for it.

    Are they CRAZY????
  • Reply 5 of 107
    elixirelixir Posts: 782member
    eh , i cant really say if i agree or disagree with the decision
  • Reply 6 of 107
    mr. hmr. h Posts: 4,740member
    I'm surprised by the faces in here.



    The fact that Apple can get away with a closed DRM scheme is highly annoying. Legislation such as this would help consumers, not hinder them. Except, if it only happens in France, Apple will probably just exit that market and nothing will change.
  • Reply 7 of 107
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Mr. H

    I'm surprised by the faces in here.



    The fact that Apple can get away with a closed DRM scheme is highly annoying. Legislation such as this would help consumers, not hinder them. Except, if it only happens in France, Apple will probably just exit that market and nothing will change.




    What Boccaccini said !

    Apple's DRM IS NOT CLOSED !

    Burn the music into CD and rip it to whatever piece of shit mp3 player you have ! Done !

    Where's the problem ?
  • Reply 8 of 107
    crees!crees! Posts: 501member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Mr. H

    I'm surprised by the faces in here.



    The fact that Apple can get away with a closed DRM scheme is highly annoying. Legislation such as this would help consumers, not hinder them. Except, if it only happens in France, Apple will probably just exit that market and nothing will change.




    It (iTMS) is a service. You don't have to use it. I hope they pull out.
  • Reply 9 of 107
    The real problem with all of this is not having to do with Apple using DRM to get an edge. Honestly their scheme is crackable and simple and yet they still use it. The problem is simply the labels require Apple to have a DRM scheme if they are to provide the music Apple wants to sell. Compliance with this would mean either no DRM which the labels would stop selling music to Apple and Apple's store would loose almost everything besides independent and smaller less lame labels (the few that are left) or they open up the format which makes it legal to remove the DRM because its no longer a technology that is being CRACKED and the DMCA wouldn't apply.



    So to me France just doesn't get it. Then again France never really has ever got it...
  • Reply 10 of 107
    Wow, everybody here seems to love DRM.



    For the record, I hate it. DRM constantly gets in my way, even after I've legally paid for it. For example, I've bought about $500 worth of audiobooks at Audible.com. However, because of the DRM, I can't play them on my phone, only my iPod, and because it's limited to 3 computers, I constantly have problems playing it on the computer I'm on at that moment, even though I don't share them with anybody else.



    DRM is bullshit. I'm happy to pay for things as long as the price is reasonable, but please no DRM!
  • Reply 11 of 107
    By the way, the iTunes Music Store France is not a French company, it's based out of Luxembourg or some such place. As such, I do not see how it would be affected by this new law.
  • Reply 12 of 107
    Not directly related to music, but I have both region 1 and region 2 DVD's. It's a PAIN to play them both on my computer, because it's limited to 5 "switches". They both cost about the same, so the reason I have both regions isn't cost, it's just that it happened that way, e.g. I was somewhere else and bought a DVD, or a friend gifted me a DVD, and so on.



    It's a huge pain, and because of it, I wouldn't have any qualms about pirating movies.



    It's like the record labels and movie publishers don't want my business. I'm trying to keep giving them my money, but they're making it harder and harder to do.
  • Reply 13 of 107
    mr. hmr. h Posts: 4,740member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by European guy

    Burn the music into CD and rip it to whatever piece of shit mp3 player you have ! Done !

    Where's the problem ?




    The massive loss in sound quality?



    Really, I'm amazed by the number of people jumping to the defence of DRM. DRM sucks. Apple do not need it to be successful, the quality of the iPod/iTunes combination will do that.



    What if I want to play my iTunes purchased songs on an iPod and something else (like a Roku, Sonos or Sony Ericsson Mobile)? Ever thought of that? Why should I have to suffer quality degredation just because Apple refuse to licence Fairplay to anyone else?
  • Reply 14 of 107
    Hypocrites!



    The French have never lifted a finger to force interoperability of computer software, gaming consoles, etc. that would help consumers. So, why the sudden assault on Apple (a perennial victim of Microsoft's lockout)?



    It's not for the benefit of French consumers, it's to help out companies like FNAC and the French subsidiary of Virgin and other losers that failed to win the business of their countrymen.



    FairPlay is the most consumer-friendly version of DRM, and DRM is the ONLY way the owners of content (not artists) will make the material they control available for legal download. FairPlay, therefore, is a necessary evil and Apple is to be commended for keeping it as consumer-friendly as it is.



    At this point, Apple's only course is to shut down iTMS France on the day the law goes into effect and advise angry French consumers to take action against their legislators who caused the termination of service.
  • Reply 15 of 107
    Quote:

    Originally posted by European guy

    What Boccaccini said !

    Apple's DRM IS NOT CLOSED !

    Burn the music into CD and rip it to whatever piece of shit mp3 player you have ! Done !

    Where's the problem ?




    No problem.

    Simply, the market is full of mp3 players.

    You like iPod? Nice: use iTunes or buy CDs and import it to feed your iPod.

    You don't like iPod? Buy another mp3 player, import CDs and buy on the music store related with that product.



    I don't like that lawmakers has to intervene and interfere on a Company like Apple, calling "monopoly" a good idea which is appreciated by a lot of people.



    Nothing more than this. It's a point of view.
  • Reply 16 of 107
    Fair Play was a reasonable approach for bringing the music companies and consumers together in a legal & fair manner. It was conceived during a period when illegal downloads were rampant (they probably still are) and it actually made paying for your music fashionable again. The French also tend to forget that it has generated significant tax revenues all over the world.



    It simply gets down to the fact that you will have Apple's DRM, MS's DRM, Sony's DRM (well, not Sony anymore) or you will not have the fantastic market you now have.
  • Reply 17 of 107
    mr. hmr. h Posts: 4,740member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Luca Boccaccini

    No problem.

    Simply, the market is full of mp3 players.

    You like iPod? Nice: use iTunes or buy CDs and import it to feed your iPod.

    You don't like iPod? Buy another mp3 player, import CDs and buy on the music store related with that product.



    I don't like that lawmakers has to intervene and interfere on a Company like Apple, calling "monopoly" a good idea which is appreciated by a lot of people.



    Nothing more than this. It's a point of view.




    Why is everyone so focussed on the portable music players? You know, there are plenty of devices that do not compete with the iPod, but do play AACs (such as Roku soundbridge and Sonos music players I mentioned earlier). There are plenty of reasons why someone who owns an iPod would like to see the back of DRM, or at least, see Apple licence it to third parties.
  • Reply 18 of 107
    mr. hmr. h Posts: 4,740member
    double post...
  • Reply 19 of 107
    hattighattig Posts: 832member
    This is annoying for Apple, but someone would rule this way sometime, somewhere.



    The thing is, the market has decided it likes the iPod and iTMS.



    Would the market have accepted the CD Player if only Philips made players and they never licensed it to anybody else? Probably not.



    In the long run, forced licensing of Fairplay (and the other DRM schemes) could be beneficial.



    If my iPod broke, and I bought a different player (and vice versa) it would want my purchased music to work. At the moment DRM is a software enforced difference, making equally capable hardware only work with certain media. It's like CD vs cassette vs vinyl, but where the physical stuff is exactly the same.



    The best music store will win - the one with the most choices, the best layout, the easiest to use. However I can see Sony deciding to pull music from iTMS and Microsoft systems, because they're both a label, store and hardware maker - they can use that as leverage to promote their store to the detriment of the other companies. That will harm consumers greatly.
  • Reply 20 of 107
    I agree with Luca. Goverment interferes too much already with free enterprise.

    Apple has every right to put the constraints they have on their product.

    I have every right to either buy my Apple products, or go but some other MP3 player.



    Governments have the right to interfere when safety, etc is concerned, but hey, this is music, not heart valves or something.



    Why should Apple be forced to do anything that they percieve to be detremental to their profits? They have an obligation to their stockholders to do what is best for the company. Period.



    I like my ipods, (I've owned 4 of them so far), my itunes, and my mac computers.



    The heck with France. I'd love to see Apple just pull out of France....then you'll hear France do what they do best.....whine. France needs itunes more then Apple needs France. It would also send a clear message to any other anti-business countries that may be thinking to do the same thing.



    Macfandrive also makes some good points....many times there are ulterior motives to something like this.



    Frank D.
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