Not surprisingly, TidBITS Talk exploded last week with discussion of Apple’s new iTunes Music Store, iTunes 4, and the new iPods. The lack of support for Mac OS 9 users was a sore spot, as was the lack of international availability, given Apple’s poor record with iPhoto books and prints. Some posters expressed hope that the iTunes Music Store would prove a boon to artists, but it’s hard to see how right away, given abusive recording contracts. Related to this last topic was a thread about the AAC file format and how it enables Apple’s digital rights management. A number of people expressed their dissatisfaction with older iPods not receiving all the software features of the new iPods, though others defended Apple’s decision. Lastly, we discussed just how Apple was dealing with the transaction fees for so many small sales, with several people advancing different theories.
iTunes Music Store International (13 messages)
Tunes Music Store in Mac OS 9 (3 messages)
How artists do in the iTunes Music Store (14 messages)
Problems with the iTunes Music Store (2 messages)
AAC and DRM (10 messages)
New features only for new iPods (23 messages)
iTunes Music Store simulating micropayments (3 messages)
Stepping outside the musical hubbub, Dan Frakes’s recommendations for better ways to distribute Mac OS X software also generated some discussion, with Dan adding a long followup. The public beta of Nisus Writer Express for Mac OS X was bandied about, and Mac OS X 10.2.5’s troubles with USB hubs causing kernel panics remained a source of consternation.
Distribution of Mac OS X software (12 messages)
Nisus Writer Express beta out (8 messages)
Mac OS X 10.2.5 changes (26 messages)
Finally, in the meta-discussions about TidBITS itself, there was a back and forth about our policy of rounding prices in TidBITS for readability, which many people appreciate, but others find inaccurate. We also asked for feedback on a few more content management systems we found interesting – if you’re informed about the topic, we’d welcome your opinions as well.