Apple's online music practices reportedly spark antitrust investigation |

Music | The Music Mix

Apple's online music practices reportedly spark antitrust investigation


itunesToday’s New York Times reports that the U.S. Justice Department has begun inquiring into the way that Apple sells music online. At issue, it seems, is the ongoing contest between the iTunes Music Store and The Times’ anonymous sources say that “investigators had asked in particular about recent allegations that Apple used its dominant market position to persuade music labels to refuse to give the online retailer exclusive access to music about to be released.”

Apple certainly does wield a mighty market share. The Times cites figures showing that 69 percent of all online music sales in the U.S. go through iTunes. Amazon takes second place – with a measly eight percent of the MP3 market. Have Apple’s efforts to stay at No. 1 crossed a legal line? These are early days for the Justice Department’s reported investigation, so it may be some time before we have a definitive answer. A rep for Apple did not respond to the Music Mix’s request for comment.

What do you think of this story? Weigh in via the comments below.

(Follow the Music Mix on Twitter: @EWMusicMix.)

More from’s Music Mix:
Christina Aguilera explains tour postponement: Are you convinced?
Wu-Tang Clan, Slick Rick, and more to perform full albums on Rock the Bells tour
Country singer Mindy McReady hospitalized
Rihanna channels Slash in ‘Rockstar 101′ video: Watch here
Ne-Yo unleashes ‘Beautiful Monster,’ first single from upcoming album
Two-year-old girl covers Justin Bieber, awaits record contract