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Apple investigating DMCA violations by Real\'s Harmony

updated 08:45 am EDT, Thu July 29, 2004

Apple on Real\'s Harmony

Apple today released an official statement on , which allows users to play its song files on the iPod. In a brief statement, Apple said that it was investigating possible criminal violations under the DMCA and other laws as well as threatening compatibility by updating the iPod firmware. "We are stunned that RealNetworks has adopted the tactics and ethics of a hacker to break into the iPod, and we are investigating the implications of their actions under the DMCA and other laws. We strongly caution Real and their customers that when we update our iPod software from time to time it is highly likely that Real's Harmony technology will cease to work with current and future iPods."

by MacNN Staff




  1. denim

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Like people will break their expensive iPods so they can play low quality Real files! Right. If they do, there's no need to sue Real. Just make sure the iPods won't ever update again, and add mucho cool features later.

  1. johnhood

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Funeral date set?

    Real R.I.P

  1. macimmortal

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Link please?

    How about a link to the official statement?

  1. boomer0127

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Not a Real supporter...

    ...but isn't it funny to hear FUD coming from Apple? Or is it sad? Or is it a sign of Apple's dominance/monopoly in digital music?

  1. Jonas Maebe

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Although I don't like Real as a company at all, I find it lame of Apple to act as if there is something inherently/morally wrong with what Real did. They reverse-engineered the format/security protocol uses for the sole purpose of creating an interoperable product. So what?

    It's as if Apple is somehow scared of competition! Duke it out in the market place, not in the court room! Real is not plagiarising, not "stealing" anything or whatever.

    It's sad that laws like the DMCA may indeed make stuff like this illegal.

    PS: before you bash me as an Apple-hater: I own a G4/400, an iBook G3 and a RevB G5/1.8.

  1. paulc

    Joined: Dec 1969


    still don't get it

    I have yet to read/hear one real downside to this situation. IF Real proceeds and apple doesn't fight them, will they sell LESS Pods? Or maybe they'll sell MORE? And I seriously doubt they'd sell LESS songs on the ITMS; besides, they have said all along they don't make their money there, but on sales of Pods.

    And these wouldn't be REAL format, they'd be AAC, same as what apple sells.

    I also do NOT get why Mac faithful cheers so loudly while apple acts almost worse than m$. It's like they are PROUD that jubs can be just like gatez. Don't make me proud.

  1. ronjamin

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Back to the Good Ole Days

    I remember when Apple had the prick mentality. When Apple's customer service wouldn't help you or even tell you how to turn the computer on (remember they used to tell you to see your local sales rep!).

    Arrogance is Apple's biggest failing. Now that they sit on the top of the mole hill with 1 product, an mp3 player, they are playing hardball. Yea, they got stung by not protecting their "windows" interface, so now they are being extra careful.

    So, instead of keeping all of the toys for themselfs, why not license the technology, like Microsoft did with windows. Then they will truely know monopoly.

    Yea, right......Like Steve would do that.

    Ahh, well, they "rebranded an iPod with HP". Why not rebrand the file format with Real?

  1. deTaNg

    Joined: Dec 1969



    It's not about the concern of putting more songs from elsewhere on the ipod. It's about the control, licensing and distribution of what Apple has created and made mainstream. If you made a web site and someone hacked it, made it compatible, so that someone could browse it from another website without directly going to yours, all the meanwhile you were planning to sell your website, would you be PiSsED?!!!

  1. Seqiro

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Think of it this way...

    If Real has figured this much out, it might not be long before Real figures out a way to make iTunes purchases playable on other devices, something that Apple doesn't want since the point of iTunes is to sell iPods.

  1. dwishbone

    Joined: Dec 1969


    should have licensed

    apple brought this on themselves. REAL came to them and wanted to use Fairplay. Apple refused them. what else could REAL do? drop off the face of the earth? (wouldnt that be nice) its not that surprising this has happened. iPod is tops. they want their music on it. so do all the others. if Apple would just off their high horse and license Fairplay everything would be fine.

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