Bruce Willis and the Potential iTunes Lawsuit
Do we really own our music, or are we just borrowing the file?
Web2Carz Contributing Writer
Published: September 10th, 2012
n a world where we are constantly told that pirating is wrong and paying for things is the right way to own music and movies, it seems a little odd that thanks to a potential lawsuit from action star Bruce Willis, we're finding out that the files we've paid to download (and in turn, "own,") aren't actually ours after all.
News reports, although they are plenty conflicting, say that Bruce Willis is/isn't suing Apple because he wants to leave his music library to his kids in a will, but thanks to Apple's terms of service, he can't.
When you download a song, you're not actually downloading the song—you're downloading the rights to listen to it.
It turns out that when we're paying to download a song, an episode of a TV show, or a movie, we're not really paying to own the content, but paying for the right to download and listen to/watch the content. In other words, you're renting it indefinitely. It'll be automatically returned once you're no longer around, theoretically.
It's kind of a garbage policy, and one that Apple hasn't exactly made clear. And it makes us wonder: once people find out about this, will they stop buying music again like they did when Napster first came around? Or will they shift to other companies that sell downloadable music, like Amazon? Or, and this is a really crummy thing to ponder, are the other companies peddling the same "downloading/listening/watching privilege" and not ther actual product?
It's extremely frustrating that in a time when people are strapped for cash and still try to do the noble thing and pay for what they're using, that the companies that collect the cash are taking advantage of their customers' ignorance.
And the answer here isn't just to go back to buying hard copies of music--sometimes you really do only want a song or two off an artist's record, and since the technology is available for labels to sell individual songs, they should be selling the actual music, not just a "download."