Extended Apple iTunes samples rollout was blocked

There was a lot of talk before the Apple media event on September 1 about iTunes samples being extended to one full minute and it was one of the things widely expected to be announced by Steve Jobs. However we were as surprised as others when there was no such announcement made, even though there was other news about iTunes 10 and Ping.

It seems though that the rollout of the scheme may have been blocked because of opposition from the National Music Publishers Association according to Josh Ong over on Apple Insider, sourced from CNet. Music insiders seem to feel that Apple was rather hasty in its moves to rush through the announcement but hadn’t got all the necessary agreements in place.

Although Apple had agreements with the four big record companies it was felt this wasn’t enough and the NMPA felt there were still licensing issues that needed smoothing out. It also appears that the NMPA learned about Apple’s plans to extend the samples and contacted the giant corporation with its concerns before the Apple event.

Jay Rosenthal, general counsel of NMPA apparently told CNet last week, “We believe that a license is necessary, and conversations must occur before song samples are extended.” One publisher, BMI is in “active negotiations” with Apple according to BMI spokeswoman Hanna Pantle, with talks concerning the lengths of song samples. Although Apple has certainly been the major player in the music community it may find it does not have quite so much clout when other companies start to expand into music, such as Google Music, planning to launch an online music service soon.

For more on this go to appleinsider.com. It will be interesting to see how long it takes for these problems to be resolved as the extension of iTunes samples to one minute would certainly be a popular move with many. What are your thoughts on this? Why not send us your comments to let us know.