1. Akshay Masand's Avatar

    Although Apple and many record labels abandoned digital rights management protection in music purchased from the iTunes Store years ago, an antitrust lawsuit regarding the matter originally filed in 2005 is set to go to trial later this week. This particular class-action lawsuit which was filed roughly 9 years ago alleged that Apple violated federal antitrust laws and California’s unfair competition law by requiring customers use an iPod to listen to music purchased from the iTunes Music Store. The Cupertino California company managed to have several claims struck from the complaint in 2005 but wasn’t successful when it came to having the lawsuit dismissed.

    The lawsuit was originally focused on RealNetworks, which caused a controversy in July of 2004 when it released a workaround allowing songs purchased from its store onto Apple’s iPod. The lawsuit took issue with Apple’s “refusal to license FairPlay technology to other companies” but the claims were dismissed in December of 2009. What remains at the moment is an allegation that Apple attempted to maintain a monopoly on the portable media player and downloadable music markets by issuing updates to FairPlay which was its DRM that locked iTunes purchases to Apple devices.

    Apple ended up negotiating deals with record labels to drop DRM from music purchases in DRM after the lawsuit was filed but the lawsuit carried on. Jobs himself was set to testify in the case in 2011. His deposition in 2011 along with emails obtained through the lawsuit are expected to play a major part in the antitrust suit as noted by the folks over at The New York Times. The damages in the lawsuit are upwards of $350 million and could be imposed on Apple if the company was to lose the trial. We’ll have to wait and see what happens once the trial begins.

    Source: The New York Times via AppleInsider

    Twitter: @AkshayMasand
    2014-12-01 07:05 PM