ITunes threatens music industry more than piracy

The CEO of Miramax has warned that iTunes is more of a threat to Big Content than piracy.

According to Boing Boing, Mike Lang told the the MIPCOM conference piracy was not a big deal.

He said the chokepoints in the distribution chain were when there isn’t enough diversity in distribution, so there are intermediaries that end up totally controlling an industry.

He added that another problem is the emergence of digital monopolies such as the one Apple has in the digital music business. He warned that this problem threatens the music industry more than piracy.

Lang said that Apple is the strongest company in the music industry because there was not enough competition. This means that the music industry can’t influence things like packaging and merchandising, which are, he thinks, vital.

The music business is suffering because it allowed too few players to flog content, presumably fearful of their content being stolen. Encouraging Apple’s iTunes at the expense of others is effectively strangling the industry, he said.

Lang said this was the reason why the movie industry did its deal with both Netflix and Hulu. It needed multiple players to be successful.