Dark Side of ITunes (4.8) & Other Apple Tales

Well, yesterday’s post about Apple, Yahoo, Napster and Microsoft set off a lot of people – many of them, not too thrilled with my arguments. Many were on the fence, but there was one response from an entrepreneur in the digital music space, that summed up why Apple might just screw it up. “Apple’s got a massive head start with the iPod and that the barrier of entry is very high indeed if you want to compete. However, Apple has a terrible track record when it comes to keeping something like this going or actually capitalizing on it to a massive degree,” he wrote.
He believes that Apple is unwilling to work with others and has a not-invented-here disease. I kinda agree with that. I mean by now Apple should have integrated all the music recommendation services into iTunes and enhanced the value of the software, instead of pushing its lame matching service in the iTunes store. Apple in that sense doesn’t really get the whole social networking/open media thing, despite being a preferred platform of choice of “open media” practitioners.
Incidentally, I have not read this anywhere else, but with the release of iTunes 4.8 last week, all affiliate links that were pointing to the iTunes Music Store went on a fritz. (Happened to me as well!) Given that they get a lot of link-love and download dollars from services like Mobster, Musicmobs, Upto11.net, and MusicStrands, I wonder how it affected the sales. I think Apple should have been more open with affiliates on this one – after all in the end they are the ones with lost sales. (Does anyone have estimates on affiliate sales for iTunes store?)