An Experiment in Globalization: Results

First off, Apple did get back to me within the time frame that they promise. (I was in New York on business part of this week and last, thus the lack of blogging.) So far, so good.

But I can’t say I’m satisfied with the results. Instead of finding a way for me to acquire music from iTunes, they replied:

Currently, iTunes Music Store Gift Certificates can only be redeemed in the country where they are purchased. It is not possible to send an iTunes Music Store Gift Certificate to a recipient in another country.

Because of this, the order was canceled and a refund was issued in the amount of $[foo] to the sender’s credit card. This credit should post to the their account within 3-5 business days of [date]. We apologize for any inconvenience.

Upshot is no tunes for me, no money for Apple, or the artists, or anyone else interested in making some euro cents from legal downloads of music. (I suppose I could log onto iTunes US whenever I happen to be in the States; how’s that for convenience?) Market failure, thy name is copyright lawyers.

3 thoughts on “An Experiment in Globalization: Results

  1. You think this is anything new?
    There are at least some people who, when visiting other parts of the world, want to buy DVDs. (Eg expats visiting family in Britain who want to buy the box set of the British _The Office_.) But, of course, DVD region coding prevents them from doing so.

    When I visited South Africa a few months ago I spent maybe $800 on CDs with music from my younger days that I can’t get in the US. If CDs were region coded, that’s money that would never have been spent.

  2. Well, there are region-free players of indeterminate legality, but your point still stands. It’s ridiculous.

    Even more frustrating are problems within the EU. I don’t want to get into it because I need to watch my blood pressure, but I’ve been repeatedly surprised at how many companies still operate on a strictly national basis and how difficult even the most rudimentary attempts at shopping can be.

  3. MH, no I don’t think this is new. Doesn’t make it any less annoying.

    Agree also on the wholesale stupidity of regional coding for DVDs.

    There’s bound to be an enormous literature on the use of standards as protectionist barriers.

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