DRUDGE REPORT 2007®: "FLASH: APPLE FACES A REBELLION OVER ITUNES... Universal Music Group, the world's biggest music corporation, notified Apple that it will not renew its annual contract to sell music through iTunes... Developing.."
Not that I'm a huge fan of iTunes (nor the power they yield), but shutting down *another* consumer-loved mechanism for delivery of music is going to help UMG how exactly? I can only sincerely hope that they are getting ready to announce that they will offer DRM-free MP3s via the other channels simultaneously with turning off Apple.
If not, you are going to have hundreds of millions of iPod/iPhone consumers that can't get Universal content on their love-and-joys. I shudder to think of the consumer backlash of such a scenario... And guess who will fill the role of villain? It certainly won't be the Santa Claus in Cupertino that just delivered everyone's favorite new toy. It will be the "evil" (market's perception) record companies that "sue their customers" and now won't even sell them content that they want to buy.
But, if they *do* go DRMless MP3s (which I would applaud wildly) then guys like Amazon must be licking their chops - as this could force a mass migration to another platform where a consumer knows he can get most of what he/she is looking for from the same place.