EU Commish backs off on Apple: No problem with iTunes Store’s FairPlay DRM

“The European Union’s consumer chief soft-pedalled her views on Apple Inc. on Tuesday, backing off the line that its iTunes online music store must become more compatible with other formats,” Reuters reports.

Reuters reports, “Meglena Kuneva told a news conference there was no reason to talk about legal action against the U.S. computer and technology company and that she merely wanted to raise questions. ‘I would like, really, to start this debate. What is best to develop this market and to have more consumers enjoying this really very important, very modern way of downloading and enjoying the music?’ she said of Apple’s iTunes.”

Reuters reports, “In this week’s edition of the German magazine Focus, Kuneva had been quoted as saying: ‘Do you think it’s fine that a CD plays in all CD players but that an iTunes song only plays in an iPod? I don’t. Something has to change.'”

“Kuneva said she worked closely with Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes, whose department has found no reason to pursue Apple. Kroes’ department has said there were no problems with Apple’s use of digital rights technology,” Reuters reports.

Full article here.
Well now, it looks like something changed alright. Kuneva seems to have quickly learned the valuable lesson to think before you crack your yap lest the U.S. Undersecretary of Commerce for Technology and others excoriate you for your ignorant ramblings.

Related articles:
U.S. Undersecretary of Commerce for Technology says EU ‘rhetoric’ against Apple is confusing – March 13, 2007
EU Commish on Apple’s iTunes + FairPlay DRM: ‘Something has to change’ – March 12, 2007
Anti-DRM activists rap Steve Jobs; Group petitions Apple CEO to remove FairPlay DRM software – March 10, 2007
Is DRM doomed? – March 09, 2007
How Apple’s FairPlay DRM works – February 26, 2007
Windows Vista’s DRM is bad news – February 14, 2007
Monster Cable announces full support of Apple CEO Steve Jobs’ call for DRM-free music – February 13, 2007
Recording Industry Association of America wants their DRM, calls for Apple to license FairPlay – February 08, 2007
Warner’s Middlebronfman: Jobs’ DRM-free music call ‘without logic and merit, we’ll not abandon DRM’ – February 08, 2007
Dvorak: Apple CEO Steve Jobs is dead right about DRM – February 07, 2007
Apple’s Jobs jolts music industry; Zune exec calls Jobs’ call for DRM-free music ‘irresponsible’ – February 07, 2007
Apple CEO Steve Jobs’ posts rare open letter: ‘Thoughts on Music’ – calls for DRM-free music – February 06, 2007
Norwegian Ombudsman: Apple’s FairPlay DRM is illegal in Norway – January 24, 2007
Major music labels ponder DRM-free future – January 23, 2007


  1. “LinuxGuy and Mac Prodigal Son

    Evil Kuneva should drive a motorcycle off a high cliff. Those of you old enough know what I am referring to.

    The Krypto Kommie Kommish Kuneva just got a well deserved bitch slapping.

    MW: getting, as in getting bitch slapped for being an ignorant slut.”

    Steady on old chaps.

  2. Very well put ken1w

    If I made a CD player to sell, it had better play CD’s because it is a CD player, but it doesn’t have to play iTunes downloads does it?

    If I sell mp3 players should they have to play CD’s?

    If I sell tostaers should they also make lemonade?

  3. I do know the history of Meglena Kuneva. To understand her better is to know where she came from, so let’s start with her birth: Well, first the earth cooled, and then the dinosaurs came…

    Seriously, what a complete techno-idiot. Although maybe, just maybe, she’ll bring legal action against Sony and Microsoft beacuse my PlayStation games won’t work in the XBox and vice versa.

  4. ‘If I own a Macintosh, an iPod and a Sonos network, why should I have to resort to the positively 20th century approach of burning and re-ripping simply because Apple (namely Steve Jobs) believes that dealing with these companies is in some way beneath him,’

    Yeah, and why can’t I run OSX on my PSP? It ain’t fair!

  5. @the barista

    One part of your whine says that you can’t play the downloaded songs from iTunes on any other player. Another part says that you can, but are just too lazy to.

    Which is it?

  6. You stated:

    “not stupid…

    Yeah, you did miss something…

    Can’t be played on any other digital media device other than the ones that Apple allows.”

    Not too many left that don’t understand this, but if you want to play an iTunes purchased song and play it on another MP3 device, burn it to a CD and you are all done. NO DRM on the music on the CD – it is completely and LEGALLY stripped off.

    Now you have music like a CD purchased from the store – do what you wish with it. Put it onto a PC without iTunes, dump the music to any MP3 player you wish – again, do what you wish.

    NOTE: For those complaining about quality distortion to a CD, give me a break. In a car, in an airport, on a bus, MP3’s are even worse, or close too, so don’t give me the “but it is no longer 128bit like the store sold me, but something worse” as 128 bit is crap to start with.”

    Now, as for those who still cry, then don’t buy music from iTunes, and buy a CD, or another online store with Redmonds even worse DRM. There you go. Choices.

    Finally, for those wanting interoperability, I also want an Accord with a Hemi engine in it, but can you believe it, they are not interoperable unless I void the warranties and do it all on my own!

    Interoperability? Find it elsewhere in life, because you rarely will. Want it like a CD that can play anywhere any time? THEN SCREAM AT THE LABLES for ZERO DRM ON MUSIC THAT IS DOWNLOADED, LIKE STEVE JOBS HAS NICELY, AND PUBLICALLY DONE!!!

    Check Mate

  7. ok, does all those “Play fer Sure” crapboxes contain tunes that will play on the iPod ??

    Why isnt the EU looking into that one ?

    I smell a scandal brewing ! ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”LOL” style=”border:0;” />

  8. Personally I think this gaffe has turned out very favourably for Apple. The EU competition commissioner is now on record stating that they have “no issue” with Apple’s DRM. You will now see the local consumer offices in places like Germany back off, as any attempted enforcement action can be immediately appealed to the EU, who have already said that they don’t see an issue. Only leaves Norway, and Apple probably wouldn’t lose sleep over shutting down that store.

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