10 January 2011

Apple Technofascism


The iPhone and iPad versions of the popular video player VLC have been removed from the App Store, in what appears to be a showdown between VLC's open-source licensing and the DRM restrictions placed on apps downloaded from Apple's store.

I’m not going to claim that Apple isn’t within its rights to remove VLC from their app store.  However, this example succinctly explains why I am not an Apple user:  they don’t support open source software, particularly when it infringes on their monetization schemes.  Again, there is nothing immoral about this, but Apple needs to understand that, as a consumer, I just don’t feel particularly inclined to but overpriced hardware that runs a cheap Linux knockoff and then piss away more money on top of that.

I know Apple is supposed to “just work.”  (It doesn’t, by the way.)  But I would rather have a much higher degree of freedom in the software realm.  No, I’m not a Linux fanboy; I use Windows 7 (mostly for the games).  Windows at least supports Open Source software, and is beginning to encourage its usage even more.  It’s also considerably cheaper to build a high-end Windows machine, and so I have freedom at a low cost.  And that’s why 90% of computers have Windows on them as well.

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