Microsoft-Universal deal

Some people are upset about the Microsoft-Universal deal that gives Universal $1 for each Zune sold. Some are calling for a boycott. The controversy stems from the reasoning behind the deal. Doug Morris, the CEO of Universal Music Group, has been quoted saying:

These devices are just repositories for stolen music, and they all know it. So it’s time to get paid for it.

If you don’t like being accused of being a thief, you should obviously buy an iPod instead of a Zune.

This sticker is present on every iPod sold:

iPod - Don't steal music

For comparison, the Zune sticker:

Zune - Let's get started

Hey, wait a minute… Let’s get started doing WHAT?

9 thoughts on “Microsoft-Universal deal

  1. MDK

    Good catch. The media moguls are going everything they can to maintain the “status-quo”. I think in EU we still pay a small “media tax” for each blank recordable media sold (ie. CD-ROM’s). The rationale is that it can be used to steal music.

  2. LoungeFly

    Hi So Sue Me,

    You really read into the MS Universal deal that it accuses you of sealing music? Watch the same happen with the iPod shortly when Apple meets with Universal early next year :) I think this deal was more about Universal allowing MS to sell their music… just like you pay for a single song in this case you pay a small fee for the device and another small one for the song. Thats my take on it.

    “Hey, wait a minute… Let’s get started doing WHAT?”

    All the stuff you can’t do with an iPod … thats what!!! :) Wireless sharing of music and photos… nice big clear screen … a device that is not engineered to break after one year … a case that does not scratch up so easily … a device that plays both AAC & WMA files for people that have both (also MP3 on top of that) … the list goes on ….

  3. Diego

    Re Zune: “a device that is not engineered to break after one yea”

    Ha! Has it been a year? The Zune could die after six months. You’re premature here.

    When Apple meets UMG hopefully Steve will stand up to the music cartel and not be weak as piss like Microsoft are. Microsoft: No taste, no backbone.

  4. dimitris

    If you don’t like being accused of being a thief, you should obviously buy an iPod instead of a Zune.

    No, you should buy neither of the two, even though a sticker is less of a spit in the face than your money changing hands.

    If you must have a portable music player, a nice choice would be a device, like my old Rockbox-running Archos, which had zero DRM. Loading music involved all of:


    mount /mnt/archos
    cp -a ~/music /mnt/archos
    umount /mnt/archos

  5. HeyBuddy

    I’m getting a Zune & filling it up with free Universal media!

    If I have to pay for being a thief, I’ll feel fine about being one.

    You get what you pay for?

  6. KB

    Re: a device that is not engineered to break after one year … a case that does not scratch up so easily … a device that plays both AAC & WMA files for people that have both (also MP3 on top of that)

    I’ve had my iPod photo since March of 2005. Not only is it still in working condition, but my case still looks to be brand new. It’s all on a mater of how you take care of it. Also, the iPod plays MP3, plays AAC, and imports and converts WMA for you. Plus it plays protected AAC from the iTunes store = the largest online music store and the most popular compared to the Zune Marketplace which has 2 million songs.

    On top of that, the iPod has a adapter for photo transfer from your digital camera, you can play games, you can put linux on it and play doom, and you have more than enough 3rd party products for the device to meet all your needs (granted it has a 5 year start)

    I’m not dissing the Zune: Personally, I’d love to see the iPod with a larger screen and real wireless support: one that allows transfer AND internet AND downloading music straight to your iPod.

    Ultimately, I think the Zune has some features that the iPod needs to incorporate and the Zune has some areas where it needs improving too.

    To the subject though, for Universal to demand money, thats just BS. You are underfining the thefts of thousands of songs and unjustly fining people who don’t steal music. What record companies need to realize is that people are going to risk this stuff for free stuff. They aren’t gonna pay if they don’t have to. Use that to your advantage and stop trying to fight it. Do what TV networks are doing: online streaming of shows. TVs get their ads and people get their free shows.

    (/rant)

    Re; Archos aaahhhh the good ol days when DRM was just a dream in some greedy CEO

  7. Tom Hodgins

    hmm, a tax on all blank recording media – we’ve got that in Canada already. Hasn’t killed us yet. All people selling music in canada can apply for some of that money back too! Our gov’t is very easy with taking money from you, and also giving it back to the right people.

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