Media formats change, that’s a given. I’ve gone though quite a few different formats in my short life and I am sure this process will continue for some time.
Video wise; I have moved from the Beta to a VCR to a DVD player.
Music wise; I have moved from record albums to cassette tapes to CDs to MP3s.
This last format for media is very different from all the others. Beta tapes could be played on any machine. It didn’t matter what company manufactured the machine, you could play the tapes on it. Same goes for VCRs, and DVD players. If you had a movie and you could find a machine you could play it. Everyone seemed to own a VCR and a DVD player. This was convenient and made a lot of sense. In fact, this is still the case with BluRay.
When it comes to music, the same thing happened. Any record could be played on any record player. Any cassette tape could be played on any cassette deck. And any CD could be played on any CD player.
So why do we have MP3 files that can only play on certain players? I don’t know why people put up with this. I will not buy an Apple or an Ipod for this reason. I think that digital music files should work the same way was all the other media formats I mentioned. If I own a song in MP3 format, I should be able to play it on any player anywhere.
Of course, Ipods don’t work this way. Songs bought on iTunes can only be played on iPod players. I think we need to demand one standard format for music files. MP3 players shouldn’t be so restricted. There are alternatives to iPods but people seem to be happy buying them. They are nice machines; I will admit that. But functionality leaves something to be desired. That’s why iDon’t and iWon’t own one.
Let’s demand a standard digital format for music. We deserve it.