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Steve Jobs posts his thoughts on music (and DRM)

Scott McNulty

I just finished reading Thoughts on Music by everyone's favorite iCEO, Steve Jobs. Then I read it again.

This is big, folks. While the piece is entitled 'Thoughts on Music,' it is really all about DRM (Digital Rights Management). Steve outlines 3 scenarios that the future of online music distribution can take:

  1. Stay as it is. Each online store using different, and incompatible, DRM schemes to sync with different devices.
  2. Apple licenses FairPlay to others (spoiler alert: it isn't going to happen).
  3. The music industry agrees to license their music to online stores without DRM.
Steve calls for the music industry to embrace the final option, arguing that DRM is pointless and pricey to support especially when you can buy a physical CD unencumbered with DRM.

I encourage everyone to read this themselves to get a glimpse into what one of the largest music distributors thinks about DRM (and it even has some interesting bits about Apple and the big record labels deal. Did you know that if FairPlay, Apple's DRM, is cracked Apple has a few weeks to fix the problem and if they can't the music companies can pull all of their music from the iTunes Store? Wacky, huh?).

I'm with Steve, let's end DRM and let the music play on all devices!

Thanks to everyone who sent this in.

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