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NBC Universal Pulling the Plug on iTunes Content

Illustration for article titled NBC Universal Pulling the Plug on iTunes Content

NBC Universal is ending its iTunes support, meaning no more "Heroes," "The Office" or "To Catch a Predator" in the iTunes store after December, when the current contract expires. What makes the rift somewhat serious for Apple is that NBC is iTunes' biggest video supplier, pulling in about 40 percent of downloads. On top of that, it could spur a mini-revolt among other media companies like CBS and News Corp., whose contracts are also coming due.


The issue seems to be the same old, same old: NBC wants to bump prices and complicate the packaging/pricing structure, while Apple ostensibly wants to keep things the way they are: simple.


More than likely, NBC's going to pull a Universal music: no long-term contract, but short-term sales agreements to keep their content up. That way they can still make money while (maybe) maintaining some leverage for negotiation. There's still a few months left, so it's possible they'll come to an agreement, but greed makes for some strong fences. [NYT]

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I stopped buying video on iTunes after my first and only purchase when I came to the realization that I couldn't do with the video what I could do with the music tracks, ie: free it from its DRM shackles by burning a copy to disk. Bogus. Now, the only video I get from Apple comes from the "free on itunes" page (on the rare occasion there's something worthwhile there...).