In a completely one-sided report this morning, a Times reporter attacks Apple, claiming the company "refused" to sell the charity Band Aid song – expected to be this Christmas' number one.
The report argues that selling the song would in some way "damage the company’s dominance of the download market". He also accuses Apple (incorrectly) of "undercutting" rival services, though most services charge the same basic prices as Apple does.
The charity track costs £1.49, but according to a report in The Times Apple will not sell it at that price. Apple sells all its iTunes tracks at a standard 79p each.
The Times reports that Apple "told the Band Aid Trust that it was not willing to make an exception and sell the song" at the higher price.
Band Aid sources said that it was "very disappointing" that the American giant would not agree to bend its sales policy when artists, retailers and the Treasury had done all they could to maximise the money raised. Universal Music said the song couldn't be sold for 79p because Band Aid must maximise the cash raised from each sale.
The Times is suggesting that because of iTunes’s dominance of the online market, Band Aid could lose out on revenue raised from the online sale of the song to the tune of 70 per cent.
The report also suggests that millions of iPod owners will not be able to play the track over the Christmas period. This is not true. iPod users will be able to buy the song on CD and load it into their iTunes library to be played on their iPod.
It seems unlikely that Apple would not wish to get involved with the charity single. Bob Geldof is a Mac user, and used to be listed as one of Apple's Apple Masters before that programme was closed.
Macworld is awaiting comment from Apple.