iTunes Policy Primer NET303 Laura Herbert


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A large percentage of people simply click or tick the 'agree' box for any number of Terms of Use/Terms of Service for software that they install without actually reading them. By agreeing, do you understand what you have agreed to? This Policy Primer explores Apple iTunes Terms of Use/Service with the objective of installing a little clarification for all users.

This Policy Primer for NET303 depicts iTunes Terms of Use

Published in: Education
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  • Hi Stefano,
    Thanks for your comment.
    I have to let you know that that story about Bruce Willis is not true ( ), it was a rumor that was taken up by the tabloids, and like all good media fodder it exploded but it did bring up an interesting quandary that most people consider at some time or another, their demise and - not many people read the TOS.

    I was pleased when Google simplified their TOS, having read the earlier version for a prior unit I found it lengthy and somewhat difficult to understand (Google, 2012) so the cloaking simplification and apparent transparency covering differing platforms needs to be somewhat vague in my opinion to enable the single TOS to be effective across the board.

    Google (2012) retrieved from

    Lardinois, L. (2012) Bruce Willis Isn’t Suing Apple Over iTunes Music Ownership Rights. Retrieved from
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  • Hi Laura,
    You did a great job in summarizing and explaining in plain English iTunes Terms and Conditions agreement. As an iTunes user, the very first thing I have noticed when I joined the service was that in order to use the service, you need to agree the over 50 pages long Terms and Conditions of use. In addition, every time Apple changes something in the agreement, the user is prompted with the full contract again. Such a lengthy contract may easily hide some important information in a maze of legal jargon. For instance, in recent months we have witnessed the case between Bruce Willis and Apple, where the actor was surprised when he discovered that he doesn’t actually own the songs he downloaded from iTunes, therefore he is not allowed to give his music collection as a gift to his daughters.

    This is one of the problems with the way that power operates on the web, users agree to Terms and Conditions that they never read, in addition the end user has no option to ‘negotiate’ those conditions; as an end user you can either accept the whole contract or decide not to use a particular service.

    In contrast with Apple’s lengthy Terms and Conditions, a few months ago Google decided to simplify their agreement by extinguishing over 60 different privacy policies and replacing them with a single agreement that is a lot shorter and easier to read (Google, 2012). Although this may seem a good move in terms of transparency, one of the issues that I highlighted in my premier is the fact that the same agreement applies to more than 60 services offered by Google, as result the wording is vague and leaves the door open to multiple interpretations.


    Google. (2012, March 01). One policy, one google experience. Retrieved from Google website:
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iTunes Policy Primer NET303 Laura Herbert

  1. 1. Have YOU read the ‘Terms of Use’ for iTunes before installing the software? iTunes Terms of Use NET 303 Policy Primer
  2. 2. I know I certainly didn’t read the Terms of Use when I installed iTunes.I ticked the ‘agree’ box like most and carried on.BIG OOPS!The opening paragraph of the policy asks the userto ‘Please read the agreement carefully BEFOREusing the software.Does anyone ever read them?By using iTunes software, you are agreeing to be BOUND by the terms of theTerms of Use’. (iTunes, 2012)Do you understand what you have agreed to?
  3. 3. Things about iTunes that you NEED know......The following statement effectively says that even though you‘purchase’ something from iTunes, you are only leasing it fromthem. ‘Apple and any third party software, documentation whether on disk, in read only memory, on any other media or in any other form (collectively the "Apple Software") are licensed, not sold, to you by Apple Inc. ("Apple") for use only under the Terms of Use, and Apple reserves all rights not expressly granted to you.’(iTunes, 2012)
  4. 4. There are permitted uses and restrictions1. Subject to the terms and conditions, you are granted a limited non- exclusive license to install and use Apple Software2. You may not make the Apple Software available over a network where it could be used by multiple computers at the same time3. You can only use Apple Software (iTunes etc) with Apple Software, (unless you are a webkit designer (, then you need a totally separate license altogether) (iTunes, 2012)
  5. 5. and artists retain their property rights by use of copyright:Apple states that the ‘Title and intellectual property rights in and to any contentdisplayed by or accessed through the Apple Software belongs to the respectivecontent owner.’ (iTunes, 2012) You can’t share. Content is covered by copyright
  6. 6. You agree to not pirate the software: because Apple has rights... and a fantastic legal team arrrrrrr arrrrrr‘You may not and you agree not to, or to enable others to:copy, decompile, reverse engineer, disassemble, attempt toderive the source code of, decrypt, modify, create derivativeworks of the Apple Software, or any part thereof. Any attemptto do so is a violation of the rights of Apple.’(iTunes, 2012)
  7. 7. Although you can modify some things:You may modify or replace only Open-Sourced Components provided that:The resultant modified Apple Software isused, in place of the unmodifiedApple Software, on a singleApple-labelledcomputer.(iTunes ( , 2012)And as a result: Apple iTunes are notobligated to provide any maintenance,technical or other support if you havemodified Apple Software
  8. 8. You are effectively censorediTunes may be used to listen to materialseither by remote access or on a computer,and is licensed to one person for personaluse only
  9. 9. A right to Privacy? You agree to let iTunes gather information about your use from your personal computer/technology:iTunes will keep you but they need to know who you arefirst:IF you opt in for usage collection, you agree to let iTunes and third parties collect,maintain, process and use diagnostic, technical, usage and related information,including information about your computer, system and application software and toverify your compliance with the Privacy Policy contained in the Terms of Use.By agreeing to the Terms of Use, you give iTunes permission to use your personalinformation.Apple’s Privacy Policy can be viewed at:
  10. 10. Who has control?You CAN legally GIVE your iTunes away BUT there are some very specific conditions:‘You may not rent, lease, lend, redistribute or sublicense the Apple Software.’(iTunes, 2012)Although you CAN make a one-time permanent transfer of all your rights to the AppleSoftware to one other person, provided that your transfer includes all the iTunes softwarecomponent parts, original media and printed materials that you have. You, must not retainany copies of the iTunes software or material. That includes all copies stored on othercomputers or storage devices. (iTunes, 2012) When you give it away you have to give it ALL away.
  11. 11. Do you need an Apple ID and access to the Internet to use iTunes? YES....iTunes ID enables access to Apples iTunes Store which offers downloads ofmusic for sale that requires access to your CREDIT CARD information stored byiTunes.Use of the iTunes requires Internet access. Use of certain services requires anApple ID, which in turn requires you to accept additional terms of service.If you do not agree to the applicable terms and conditions for anaccount – you are not able to use the iTunes(basically you have to give Apple your information to access their content).
  12. 12. iTunes admits NO liability for rude content: they advocate freedom of speechBy using any of the iTunes Services, a person may encounter content that could bedeemed offensive, indecent, or objectionable.Every user MUST agree to use iTunes at their own risk because Apple admits no liabilityfor content that may be found to be offensive, indecent, or objectionable or may ormay not be identified as having explicit language......
  13. 13. cont. Freedom of speech? iTunes says YOU need to behave but they are not responsible if you don’t: Everyone agrees to not modify, rent, lease, loan, sell, distribute, or create derivative works in any manner, or exploit in any unauthorized way to NOT use iTunes to transmit any computer viruses, worms, Trojan horses or other malware. By agreeing to the terms, a user also agrees to NOT use iTunes in any manner to harass, abuse, stalk, threaten, defame or otherwise infringe or violate the rights of any other party. iTunes states that it is NOT in any way responsible for any such use by users, nor for any harassing, threatening, defamatory, offensive, infringing or illegal messages or transmissions. (iTunes, 2012)
  14. 14. iTunes can take away your access without notification: Effectively Suspended or TerminatedApple reserve the right to change, suspend, remove, terminate or disableaccess to any Services at ANY time without notice if the user (you) fails tocomply with ANY term(s) that Apple (iTunes) specifies. Apple may alsoimpose limits on the use of or access to certain Services, without notice orliability. (iTunes ,2012)
  15. 15. Disclaimer of Warranties for iTunes –At your own riskiTunes is not intended or suitable foruse in situations or environments where failure,time delays, errors or inaccuracies in the content,data or information provided by services could lead todeath, personal injury, or severe physical or environment damage,including the operation of nuclear facilities, aircraft navigation or communicationsystems, air traffic control, life support or weapons systems. Limitation of liability.By using the Apple Software, users agree that they will not use the software for anypurposes prohibited by United States law, including the development, design,manufacture or production of missiles, nuclear, chemical or biological weapons.(iTunes, 2012) (well now.....That sounds a little scary but justifiable)
  16. 16. Making Global Control simple?:The Terms of use are governed by in accordance with the laws of theState of California, U.S.A. The Terms of Service/Terms of Use are notgoverned by the United Nations Convention for the International Sale ofGoods.
  17. 17. Different countries, different rules:Apple makes no representation that Services and Materials areappropriate or available for use in any particular location. To theextent you choose to use or access materials, you do so at your owninitiative and are responsible for compliance with any applicable locallaws. (iTunes, 2012)
  18. 18. Language:Translation of the Terms of Use is done so that everyone canunderstand and in the event of a dispute between the English and anynon-English versions, the English version of the License is the one thatis used to settle things.
  19. 19. In the end, iTunes is actually very handy free software. Just make sure that you read the Terms of Use before you use it. iTunes Policy Primer by Laura L Herbert is licensed under aCreative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
  20. 20. Reference
  21. 21. Inc. (2011) Legal Information & Notices. Retrieved from (2012) Terms of Service Terms of Use. Retrieved from (2012) Open Source ( (2012) Privacy Policy. Retrieved from