The recording industry is looking more thug-like as each day passes.
According to several sources, including Wired’s Listening Post, Universal Music Group, the largest recording business in the world, will not sign its annual contract with Apple to sell its music in the iTunes store (the 3rd largest music retailer in the U.S.).
The move is meant to pressure Apple into a deal where they would share revenue earned on their music playing devices–the iPod and the new iPhone.
Universal likely wants Apple to pay the same $1-per-unit fee that Microsoft pays Universal for every Zune it sells, and could be willing to hold its catalog hostage as a negotiating tactic.
We’ll just have to wait and see who flinches first in order to find out whether Universal’s catalog will be pulled from iTunes in the coming weeks. If Apple acquiesces, it could soon find itself doling out a dollar to each major label every time it sells a music player.
I hope Steve Jobs tells Universal to shove it. In the meantime, I’m done buying music on any of Universal’s many labels, including Geffen, Interscope, Island Def Jam, Lost Highway, MCA Nashville, Mercury Nashville, Motown, Universal or Verve.