The movie star has allegedly discovered he can’t pass on his iTunes collection to his children. It’s part of a far bigger issue, as many are discovering
Recently Bruce Willis raised an interesting issue related to the Terms and Conditions of iTunes.
It turned out that he will not be able to legally pass his iTunes music collection to his daughters, after his death. The movie star is cross with Apple and is now taking legal actions against them and requesting investigation of the legal agreement between iTunes and the client.
“A lot of people will get a similar shock when they realise this is the situation,” says Jim Killock, executive director of the Open Rights Group, which campaigns for digital rights. According to him a lot of upset customers will turn not only to Apple, but to Amazon and other companies offering digital content, as when buying a digital product such as music or books, we have no rights over the goods, as referred to the license agreement “We Accept”.
Of course, by making the customer “”agree” the digital content will be only for personal use, the companies are trying to prevent Internet piracy, however in the same time, they “treat everyone as a thief”.
On the other hand, Joshy Thomas, an intellectual property lawyer says that probably most of the iTunes users do not realise that they do not actually own the content. They pay for it, so they won`t be sued for having a certain file on their computer. One of the examples he provides in order to describe the situation is the following: . “Say I own a horse. I can give you permission to ride it every Tuesday, but it is still my property. It also doesn’t mean your child has permission to ride it every Tuesday after your death. This is the situation as it stands. Apple could fix this tomorrow, though, by simply changing its small print.”
Mr. Thomas agrees that the issue of who owns the “digital footprint” has been growing and that case is just the beginning. For example many people are asking what will happen to their Facebook page or e-mail archive, after their death. These issues are comparatively new, due to the lack of so wide-spread internet connection and the respective services.
Mr. Thomas also made a remark by saying that Bruce Willis should be very careful, as by forcing Apple to change their policy, this can serve as a thread to his fellow artists, because this might deprive them from receiving the income they should- as Mr. Thomas says : “Apple is only the middle-man here.”