Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Jobs creates a stir

Steve Jobs is at it again. I'm assuming most of you have read his Thoughts on Music. Jobs lays out the state of the music world and three alternatives for the future. He uses the post to explain why Apple must slap DRMs on music sold on iTunes, making it playable only on iPods. His three alternatives, continuing the current system of separate DRMs for each company, licensing its DRM (FairPlay) to other sites, or removing DRMs altogether, basically serve to explain that the current state needs to be changed. His conclusion is a plea to the Big 4 Labels (Universal, Sony BMG, Warner and EMI) to help charter a course along the lines of the last option.

It's a solid analysis and definitely a fairly impartial article. However, it smells just slightly of a PR move, showing the people that Jobs and Apple are on their side. His point (doing away with DRMs) is fairly obvious and a sentiment almost all readers are inclined to agree with. Of course, getting rid of DRMs will boost iTunes sales, so Jobs is definitely speaking mostly from the heart.

Interesting response on Mark Cuban's blog. Not what Jobs wants to hear, but Cuban urges the major labels to build a iTunes clone as a joint venture, get rid of DRMs, and monetize both the music and the traffic on their new music purchase platform(via Yahoo's Panama or Google's AdSense). There's a bunch of other great responses out there, but too many to link to.

Once again, sorry for the lack of posts - crazy times in West Phil these days. As I mentioned in the last post, I'll be home for CommunityNext at Stanford this Saturday. Hope to see you there.


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