NYT: Justice Department Investigating iTunes Music Tactics

Brad Stone, reporting for the NYT:

In March, Billboard magazine reported that Amazon was asking music labels to give it the exclusive right to sell certain forthcoming songs for one day before they went on sale more widely. In exchange, Amazon promised to include those songs in a promotion called the “MP3 Daily Deal” on its Web site.

The magazine reported that representatives of Apple’s iTunes music service were asking the labels not to participate in Amazon’s promotion, adding that Apple punished those that did by withdrawing marketing support for those songs on iTunes.

“Withdrawing marketing support” for songs which were given exclusive marketing deals to Amazon — Apple’s biggest rival — seems like weak sauce. It’s not like Apple was saying they wouldn’t sell the songs. They just didn’t promote them.

Wednesday, 26 May 2010