(New York) Prior to Apple’s announcement yesterday about a revamped iPod line and new iTunes Store, speculation was rampant that the company would announce its long-awaited deal to put the Beatles on iTunes. ‘Twas not to be, alas. So nearly three years after Apple and Apple Corps Ltd. (the Beatles guardian) settled their long-running trademark suit, “Love Me Do” and “Eleanor Rigby” still aren’t available on the world’s most popular online music store.
For Apple Corps Ltd., this is a mistake on the order of General Howe sending his grenadiers up Breed’s Hill instead of sailing up the Mystic River. If the experience of the music industry during the last decade teaches anything, it’s that users can quickly get whatever songs they want. When the music industry makes it easy and legal (i.e., iTunes), they profit. When the industry digs in its heels, the loss of revenue is brutal as users flock to P2P and Limewire (or for old-fashioned types, there’s always passing around a CD).
That’s why Apple Corps Ltd will have only itself to blame as music revenues drop — with love, from me to you.