Colleges offering students music services that aren’t cross-platform, don’t work with iPod

“Universities, caught in the crossfire between litigation-crazy record companies and music-swapping students, are seeking to appease both by rolling out a bevy of new, legal file- sharing services. Blake Premer, 19, isn’t buying it. The American University student turned up his nose Tuesday when he stopped by a campus booth to look over a demonstration of a new digital music service AU began offering students for free last month,” The Associated Press reports. “Premer sniffed that the service from a company called Ruckus Network Inc. doesn’t allow songs to be transferred to iPods, Apple Computer Inc.’s popular portable music player. ‘Everyone has iPods here,’ he said, ‘so what is the incentive to use it?'”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Universities and colleges who go with a service other than Apple’s iTunes are excluding their Mac-based students (and iPod-owning students) while often charging those excluded students a standard fee for the service anyway. Why are such schools ignoring their Mac-based students?

Related MacDailyNews articles:
Cornell University’s Mac users ‘uniformly unhappy’ with Napster – January 19, 2005
Cornell University wrestles with Napster’s exclusion of Mac and iPod-using students – September 08, 2004
Why are Cornell’s Mac students being forced to pay for useless Napster? – September 07, 2004
Apple launches ‘iTunes on Campus’ institutional site license program – April 28, 2004


  1. Why are Universities getting into the music business? This is like elementary schools installing Pepsi machines. Geez, stick to education. Give ’em broadband, but stop there, ferchrissakes. Young adults are surprisingly capable of finding their own musical fix…

  2. The Realist,
    “Universities, caught in the crossfire between litigation-crazy record companies and music-swapping students”

    The record companies have tried to go after some Universities saying they are responsible for the illegal file sharing that takes place on their networks. I don’t think any cases were successful, but obviously the universities are feeling pressure to create a viable solution so that they don’t have to worry about the RIAA, which they shouldn’t have to worry about anyway.

    The iTunes solution is perfect because anyone can use it and it’s free, so no one is forced to pay for a service that they can’t use.

  3. “therealist” misses the point that universities are doing this to avoid the legal liability of having students doing P2P swapping of music files illegally. They are trying to give students free or very cheap legal alternatives.

  4. 1) Liability protection
    2) Profit- yes the schools get money from these deals.
    To those who have not been to a College or University in a few years, they have gotten better than Casinos at lightening your pocket at every turn. With many state budgets tight, a lot of public Unis are having to either cut the fat or find new money.

  5. Ever notice that even when you get out, they still come after you for money. Kinda makes you wonder what an education really is worth. To be honest, I’ve learned a great number of things since I’ve been out, most of which came a lot cheaper than the fees I was assessed when in school.

  6. So,

    College students can have co-ed showers, and get so drunk they die of alcohol poisoning, and they can reside in racist and sexist fraternaties, but once they offend the merchants of music, the song changes.

    As I once said, “I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.”

  7. Apple offer pretty good incentives to third party organization selling iTunes songs. Even MDN are in on the action.

    So why can’t the schools offer both an iTunes solution and a non-iTunes solution? Then they would cover both types of mp3 players.

    The reality is that file swapping will still occur, especially amongst cash-straped students.

    With the CD came the ability to rip music enventually and that’s how all this trouble started. And who decided to sell CDs to make more money – the music companies. With networking and broadband came the ability to share files easily.

    Fact is technological advances make some things easier, even illegal ones. The music industry needs to adapt to the ever changing technological environment, especially when they were the ones to adopt it in the first place.

    I say, deliver the ability to buy and download songs legally, make it affordable and chances are most people will rather spend the cash than spend the time looking for songs on P2P networks.

    People have been trading songs since day 1 – that’s how bands get going.

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