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Whose DRM is it anyway?

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes blames Apple for DRM.

ZDNet's Adrian Kingsley-Hughes wonders, will Apple every fully embrace DRM-free music?

Causing the Macalope to wonder, will this raging headache right between the antlers ever stop?

Musing on the recording industry's current penchant for only selling DRM-free tracks through stores other than Apple's Kingsley-Hughes says:

While I can't see this having an effect on iPod sales, a decline in iTunes sales could ding Apple's profits, which in turn might mean that it has to get with the 21st century and throw away the digital shackles and compete openly.

You really haven't been paying any attention at all, have you, Adrian.

Despite the iTunes Store's market share, it's still there to drive hardware sales, not the other way around.

Some have taken this post as a slam of Apple - it's not.

Uh, right. Implying Apple's living in the 20th century, that it has to use "shackles" to sell its products and stating it doesn't want to "compete openly" (as if everyone else does) certainly couldn't be misconstrued as anything other than complimentary.

However, Apple/Steve Jobs have in recent months claimed to be anti-DRM...

For the record, that was in February.

...but not managed to offer a complete DRM-free catalog and have blamed the music industry for this. However, Amazon's MP3 store shows that the music industry is obviously interested in offering DRM-free music ... so why not through iTunes?

Uh, because the industry won't let them? Because the recording companies woke up one day and realized they were no longer in the business of music distribution because everyone was using a new distribution channel and that their supposed "value add" of selecting which music would actually be distributed was now not only irrelevant but actually a nuisance because they continue to pick utter crap and, in a vain attempt to salvage some sense of their relevance, they're trying to knock the new market leader off its perch?

The Macalope has written of the willful obtuseness of the ZDNet blogger but Kingsley-Hughes turns it into an art form.

Back here on planet Earth, however, the simple truth is that the initial contracts between the industry and Apple were to supply DRM-ed music through iTunes. Now the industry is conspicuously avoiding renegotiating those contracts in a deliberate effort to reduce the iTunes Store's market position. As Michael Gartenberg said, they're trying to poke Apple with a sharp stick. They're not interested in sales -- they clearly haven't been for years -- they're just trying to be the biggest jackasses they can because that's the only thing they know how to do.

Is there any other rational explanation behind the brilliant ideas these clowns come up with? Message to customers: "We hate you!" Well, message received.

Now that the kid gloves are off and the RIAA has changed its story so that ripping a CD is no longer kosher, the Macalope looks forward to the RIAA's suit against some high-profile CD rippers. [UPDATE: Looks like the Washington Post story was bad. They've issued a correction.] Like, say, President Bush. In for a penny, in for a pound, right boys and girls?

Bring it on, indeed.

The RIAA is like an angry drunk who just got let go from the factory, lashing out at anyone and everyone in arm's reach. Only a ZDNet blogger couldn't see that.