Lawyers suing [Apple] said the new devices bolster their antitrust case accusing Apple of trying to monopolize the markets for digital music players and online music sales.
“The inability of the new line to play competing formats is part of the case,” said Gregory Weston, an attorney with one of the nation’s premier class-action firms, Coughlin Stoia Geller Rudman & Robbins of San Diego. “That is evidence that the company is acting like a monopolist and not competitive.”
Just ignore that there are competing formats, that they continue to exist, and that companies continue to release new products capable of playing those formats. None of that proves anything about competition and consumer choice. The iPod is really popular and Apple has a lot of money!
In court documents, Apple said demanding that the company work with competitors “may facilitate the supreme evil of antitrust: collusion.”
“Forcing Apple to deal with rivals may lessen the incentive for Apple or rivals to innovate and invest in economically beneficial facilities,” Apple wrote in court briefs. “It would require antitrust courts to act as central planners, identifying the proper price, quantity and other terms of dealing — a role for which they are ill-suited.”
Ill-suited? Absolutely. But central planning is exactly what anti-capitalists want, especially if they can steal money in the process of getting to centrally-planned, where they can steal more money for the “good” of consumers.
The [class-action status seeking antitrust] suit alleges Apple customers were economically harmed because, once they bought an iPod and purchased music at iTunes, they were locked forever into buying iPods.
Perhaps they should ask each individual iPod customer if he or she has been economically harmed. I don’t. I valued the iPod and all its alleged limitations more than the $400 I paid for it. The same was true of the second iPod I bought. It was going to be true of the third iPod I intended to buy, the iPod Touch, but I don’t like the limited size of both hard drive choices. I will be keeping my $400 and Apple will be keeping its iPod. Behold competition.
Did I mention that the iPod’s success is largely due to its superior design and user interface? Central planners have never concerned themselves with quality, of course. Quantity matters exclusively. Apple has sold the most mp3 players (to lemmings, apparently), so they’re monopolists. Ridiculous.