Sweden and Norway have long been ahead in many social and technology trends. Whether it is the comprehensive daycare system or the ability to shop in supermarkets where the customers not only scan the goods themselves but also pay in a machine, these countries often give us a vision of where we are going.
The fact that they have now made a move against Apple means that this will be a long unwinding process which will eventually mean that iTunes purchased tracks will be able to be played on a plethoa of media players.
Norway believes the present practice is unfair. “Bjorn Erik Thon, director of The Consumer Ombudsman’s Office of Norway, a government authority with power to fine companies for marketing and business practices that it deems unfair, “dismissed the claim Apple has often made that its policy helps combat copyright violation. ‘They are not protecting against
piracy, but instead encouraging it,” Mr. Thon said. “When consumers cannot copy an iTunes song onto their mobile phone, they will get a download of it free from Napster.’ Consumer protection authorities in Sweden echoed Norway’s action today, and Denmark is expected to do the same… Mr. Thon said that he himself had bought a large number of songs from iTunes for about 1 euro apiece, and now wanted to transfer them to his new Nokia N80 cellular phone, but could not.”