Friday, February 11, 2011

Sony May Pull Content From iTunes: Example Of What Is Wrong With Content Providers

Sony said that content providers were being held ransom by Apple and its iTunes. Sorry, I disagree. I think it’s the ineptitude of content providers due to their archaic thinking that makes them feel this way.

Here’s why. First, iTunes is very closed. Nothing on earth comes even close. Having said that, it should be easy for anyone offer a service to compete with iTunes. And we definitely have seen how easy that is can be done with all the plethora of services, brands, and devices over the year. And yet, they’ve all failed in their own unique way.

What isn’t not unique is that how they’ve failed. I think it’s because of DRM and music studios trying to bleed their users and restrictions they put in deals. Even as the content battle is currently unfolding and iTunes success in the future is hardly guaranteed, the future tech and media historians will see if any failure to stem piracy and promote competition will rest in the hands of the providers who hold the media rights.

And at times, instead of working together, you have studios working against one another or have varying motives. Take Sony for example. Music is a failing part of the empire but it continues to hold onto the rights because they hope it will help it sell its other products and services. As far as BMG, Universal, and others, they don’t care. They want to sell music. Not help Sony sell its phones or TV.

So when I read that Sony was contemplating pulling its content from iTunes, I say let them. That means more music for the other studios to sell on the largest music store in the world.

What content providers need is an open exchange where they make everything available to all the outlets and customers. Think of this as a stock market where the worth of contents is decided by a free market.

Providers can set the price and availability and the market will decide if they’re willing to pay for it.

But first, to do that, they need to get away from these stupid deals they make with different companies in an attempt to dethrone iTunes or try to get everyone to go with the subscription models.

Maybe Google should set up such an exchange, not only for Android but for iOS, Web OS, and Windows 7 devices as well. Not just for mobile or Google TV but for Windows, OS X, and the living room. If this is about being free of iTunes, Sony should join in such an effort instead of crying to the media about having its feelings hurt by Apple.

Let’s be honest, Sony. You tried for decades to create your own iTunes and failed miserably each and every single time. And now someone beat you to it and we will not be the shoulders for you to cry on.

More at The Age.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPod touch

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