Loud ramblings of a Software Artisan

Wednesday 21 September 2005

Copy unprotected CDs?

Message about copy protection on CDs, or lack thereof.

We learn that:

  1. artist do not have the choice. It is the disc company.
  2. that non Windows users are somewhat safe with some protection systems. The lack of interest for Linux and *BSD will still keep us apart at some point, happily.

That is not news in fact. But perhaps people should really start to care? Fortunately the success of the iPod might help moving in that direction as no one provide iPod ready CDs (they all give proprietary DRM WMA file which put customers into a vendor silo), and with the copy protections making things less easy for iPod owners, they might get annoyed. I myself am careful to not buy any product of this kind. I stick to oldies :-)

Thursday 8 September 2005

New iPod, new tax ?

Yesterday Apple announced a replacement of the hard-drive based iPod Mini by a flash based iPod Nano with similar capacities.

But new iPod, new taxes in France. There have been some complaints about the iPod-dollar being 60% more expensive than the real USD. First the the iPod price in France include 19.6% VAT, which allow us to account roughly 20% of difference with the displayed price. In US or Canada, the displayed price does not include tax. But there is also something interesting: the "tax" for private copy is also completely different. According to hardware.fr, the "tax" on a 4GB hard-drive iPod Mini was 9.57EUR, while on a 4GB flash iPod nano, it is 51.44EUR because it is flash memory. Do you find that fair?

For once Apple is not to blame. Lobbies are.

Fortunately in Canada, the levy has been declared void, and you can even get a refund.