Why you should not buy a Zune player

Martin Brinkmann
Nov 13, 2006
Updated • May 18, 2013

Before you judge the article by looking at the title read on and you may understand why I suggest that you do not buy one of the Zune players that are offered right now by Microsoft. It has nothing to do with the fact that Microsoft has created them as I do not really care who is creating or manufacturing devices.

It also has nothing to do with the features or hardware that was built into the device, as it is not really that bad either.

The thing that I do not like about Zune is that record labels and artists do get their share of every Zune device that is sold.

That is right folks, it does not matter if you buy music or videos to put on the Zune. They get their share even if you only use it for listening to your own music, your own movies and your own pictures. Why do they get paid for it, what is the reason behind this?

"These devices are just repositories for stolen music, and they all know it," UMG chairman/CEO Doug Morris says. "So it's time to get paid for it."

Now isn't that nice. EVERYONE is using devices like the Zune to steal music. It has no other reasons according to Doug Morris. Do you think it is fair that all Zune users have to pay extra for this?

Please note that he is speaking about devices, not the Zune directly. This is an indication of what they want to achieve. They want to get their share of the price of every device that is like the Zune, which means that they will try and push the companies who create such devices to pay them fees as well in the future.

Guess who is paying that bill in the long run? Right, we are.

The only way to stop this is to boycott the beginning - which is the Zune. Don't buy it, ignore it until they get a change of heart. I know that this is bad for Microsoft, but to be honest, that is not really my concern right now.


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  1. Martin said on November 17, 2006 at 7:58 am

    Oliver most users prefer small over big.. unless they are women and talking about sex :)

  2. Oliver Alexander said on November 17, 2006 at 7:54 am

    Get yourselves a reasonably powerful CD walkman that can play from DVDs and supports formats like mp3 and preferably also Ogg. It might not be quite as posh and hip, but saves a bundle and works about as well!

    I do not see any point to be forced to d/load everything from a prescribed source to boot!

    Progress exists in many forms. Simplicity is alway the greatest progress!

  3. brian t said on November 14, 2006 at 3:55 pm

    That “50% going to the artists” will be subject to all manner of withholdings, such as printing and breakage charges (on a non-physical product), and costs of recording, promotion and management (even if no such services are being provided to that artists).

    In short: the artists will get very little, if anything, if they are locked in to standard recording contracts. They pay all the record company costs, for the privilege of signing away all rights to the music that they PAID to create. Hey, that brass ring is pretty and shiny…


  4. Matt Emery said on November 14, 2006 at 1:23 pm

    I think they may have us by the short and curlies here, I mean, how many of us are going to boycott this device for altruistic reasons. If we really want a Zune we’ll swallow our pride and buy one… life sucks.

  5. chris said on November 14, 2006 at 11:43 am

    sorry Martin; as much as i’d like to agree, but that Zune looks pretty :D – the black one especially. Nice quality screen too. If its better than the ipod video next generation i will buy one :D £130 is a nice figure for 30gb flash drive/linux capable, colour screen, high def music playing device ;)

  6. Martin said on November 14, 2006 at 8:26 am

    Thanks RG fixed the typo.

    Jason please tell me why the Recording Companies should receive money for nothing ? This would be the same if I would charge everyone for visiting my site because they could copy my articles..

    Why would someone who would only play videos on his Zune pay the Recording Companies ? Why someone who would only buy legal mp3 files ?

  7. Jason said on November 14, 2006 at 1:00 am

    $1 for every $250 Zune goes to the Recording Companies who will share %50 of that with the Artists.

    Personally, I’m in favor of it. Think about it. $1 of your money toward a hardware purchase so that eventually all MP3’s (software) will be free?

  8. kurt wismer said on November 13, 2006 at 10:46 pm

    it was my understanding that it was actually JUST the record companies (not the artists) getting a slice of the zune pie…

    also, the fact that zune is going to add it’s own (so-called viral) DRM to files (even your own or creative commons licensed music, thereby violating the cc license) sucks pretty hard too…

  9. RG said on November 13, 2006 at 10:01 pm

    Never owned an IPod, not going to buy a Zune either. It would be nice if an artist is compensated properly for their songs but players or no players its not always happening.
    btw Martin, typo in the title :)

  10. Martin said on November 13, 2006 at 9:42 pm

    I think the Zune is the first to do this..

  11. Nhoc Quay said on November 13, 2006 at 9:35 pm

    What about the IPod and all the previous mp3 players?

    1. Beth said on June 10, 2012 at 10:43 am

      This is nothing new. This is essentially a tax to appease the recording industry for the fact that a new technology has lessened their control over who can copy and access their copyrighted content.

      The exact same thing happened when blank cassettes became available to consumers, as well as with writable CDs and DVDs. It happened with VHS and VCRs as well. The recording industry and movie distributors faught hard to block the sale of all of these items. Taxing the items and letting that tax be divided among the affected parties was a compromise.

      This is not a bad thing. It’s a compromise that allows us to move forward with technology rather than have to fight the music and or movie industry every time a new development is made. I would be surprised if Ipods weren’t subject to a similar deal, if not the same one.

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