French lawmakers agree to water down DRM bill that would affect Apple’s iTunes

“Leading lawmakers have agreed to water down a draft law that could have threatened the future of the iPod in France,” Laurence Frost and Nathalie Shuck report for The Associated Press. “The National Assembly had voted in March to force Apple Computer Inc. and other companies to make their music players and online stores compatible with rivals, but key members now say they have agreed to weaker measures endorsed by senators.”

“Currently, tunes purchased at Apple’s iTunes Music Store won’t play on music players sold by Apple rivals. Likewise, an Apple iPod can’t play songs bought on Napster Inc. or other rival music stores. Critics have called the restrictions anti-competitive and anti-consumer,” Frost and Shuck report. “The draft adopted by the Assembly, France’s lower house, contained a blanket demand that companies share their exclusive copy-protection technologies with rivals, effectively free of charge.”

Frost and Shuck report, “But the compromise, due to be approved Thursday by a committee of legislators from both houses, maintains a Senate loophole that could allow Apple and others to sidestep that requirement by striking new deals with record labels and artists.”

Frost and Shuck report, “A new regulatory authority would be given the power to resolve disputes by ordering companies to license their exclusive file formats to rivals – but only if the restrictions they impose are ‘additional to, or independent of, those explicitly decided by the copyright holders.’ This means that Apple and Sony Corp. could avoid having to share their FairPlay and ATRAC3 file formats, lawyers say, if they obtained permission from the artists whose music they sell… The Cupertino, Calif.-based computer company declined to comment Wednesday.”

More details in the full article here.

Advertisements:
Introducing the super-fast, blogging, podcasting, do-everything-out-of-the-box MacBook.  Starting at just $1099.
Get the new iMac with Intel Core Duo for as low as $31 A MONTH with Free shipping!
Get the MacBook Pro with Intel Core Duo for as low as $47 A MONTH with Free Shipping!
Apple’s new Mac mini. Intel Core, up to 4 times faster. Starting at just $599. Free shipping.
iPod. 15,000 songs. 25,000 photos. 150 hours of video. The new iPod. 30GB and 60GB models start at just $299. Free shipping.
Connect iPod to your television set with the iPod AV Cable. Just $19.
iPod Radio Remote. Listen to FM radio on your iPod and control everything with a convenient wired remote. Just $49.

Related articles:
It’s no wonder EMI is supporting Apple in France – May 23, 2006
EMI backs Apple on French DRM law – May 23, 2006
BusinessWeek: still very possible that Apple will close iTunes Music Store in France – May 12, 2006
French copyright bill approved: Apple will not have to share FairPlay DRM details with competitors – May 11, 2006
French Senate vote could offer loophole for Apple’s iTunes – May 09, 2006
Vive l’iTunes! French ‘state-sponsored piracy’ DRM law gutted in committee – May 01, 2006
Force open Apple’s FairPlay? What has possessed the French this time? – April 27, 2006
French Trade Minister: Apple’s iTunes must play fair in French music market – April 14, 2006
JP Morgan: French DRM law will have limited impact on Apple Computer – March 28, 2006
Dvorak: What the French got right with proposed DRM law – March 28, 2006
Will Apple’s Steve Jobs bid France adieu? – March 22, 2006
Wired’s Kahney: Proposed French copyright protection law a good thing for consumers in the long run – March 22, 2006
Apple calls proposed French DRM law ‘state-sponsored piracy,’ predicts iPod sales increase – March 21, 2006
French National Assembly approves digital copyright bill; could affect Apple’s FairPlay DRM – March 21, 2006

Can Scandinavians really force Apple to change iTunes Store terms? – June 16, 2006
Scandinavian triumvirate extends deadline to August 1 for Apple to reply to iTunes concerns – June 14, 2006
Norway gives Apple until June 21 to change iTunes Music Store terms – June 12, 2006
Norway: iTMS DRM under scrutiny, Microsoft DRM next – June 09, 2006
Consumer Council of Norway files a complaint regarding Apple iTunes Music Store’s terms of service – January 27, 2006

25 Comments

  1. I respect your intentions but it’s

    frenchmen retreat
    or
    frenchman retreats

    France is cool though. The courage of liberalism, and let’s not forget we’d all be speaking French if it weren’t for the Russian’s…

  2. Darn right they better water it down!

    The need to water it down more than that, in fact they just better forget about messing with iTMS altogether.

    They don’t know if it wasn’t for Apple DRM it would be Microsoft’s and huge licensing fee’s to shut out the compeition formats.

    Where the fsck did these europeans go to buisness school?

    What can be done to fsck the othr company will be done, simple as that.

    M$ could make a DRM tommorrow that would require huge processors made by their buddies. Apple would have to comply and iPod Nano’s could turn into toasters.

    STUPID GOVERNMENTS STAY THE FSCK OUTTA BUISNESS, CUSTOMERS WILL DECIDE.

  3. Do you feel this way about monopoly abusers like Microsoft?

    Well they didn’t do a darn thing against M$ now did they?

    Going after Apple is like telling someone there’s a speck of dirt on their t-shirt when they have a giant muddy footprint on theirs.

    Now witness the FULL POWER of this fully armed and operational BATTLE STATION!

  4. <i>Do you feel this way about monopoly abusers like Microsoft?

    Well they didn’t do a darn thing against M$ now did they?

    Going after Apple is like telling someone there’s a speck of dirt on their t-shirt when they have a giant muddy footprint on theirs.

    Now witness the FULL POWER of this fully armed and operational BATTLE STATION!

  5. “i wish you where in front of me now and i would show you how a frenchman retreat you idiot”

    ok everyone, I dare you to read this missive above to yourself out loud in your best inspector clouseau voice. It will crack you up.

    I PHarrrrt in your general direction. Your mother was a hampster, and your father smelt of eldiberries.”

  6. “”we’d all be speaking French if it weren’t for the Russian’s..””

    I think bob meant, we’d all be eating French dressing if it weren’t for Russian. This goes back to the great Salad wars of 1914.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.