Apple gave its users free access to U2's new album Songs of Innocence during its iPhone 6 announcements last week and loaded the songs into everyone’s iTunes library. For some persnickety Apple users, this was an unforgivable intrusion, and there were enough of them that Apple put up a web page yesterday with directions to delete the free album. Are these users expecting a personal apology from Tim Cook too?
It’s hard to understand how anyone could be offended. According to the Rolling Stone, U2 is ranked 22nd in their list of the top 100 bands of all time. U2’s music may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it isn’t offensive, and Apple’s marketing censors checked the lyrics before giving it to its users.
The band’s lead singer Bono has dedicated his time and money to humanitarian causes, such as hunger, AIDS, and Amnesty International. So humanitarian is he that he hobnobs with Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffet. Bono has won numerous accolades for his humanitarian work, including three Nobel Peace Prize nominations. So the risk that a listener would be startled by anything Bono had to say is near zero.
A 10-track MP3 album takes up about 35 MB, so storage cost can't be an objection. And this tiny bit of data wouldn’t have any impact on the most miserly data plan.
If these Apple users are offended by some perceived data privacy violation by Apple, compared to government surveillance of their personal data and the sale of their data by internet marketing companies, they have wildly misplaced their anxieties. If these users don't like Apple's involvement with their computers and smartphones, maybe they should turn off software updates and pray for new features and against viruses, like some modern-day cult that refuses medical treatment.
Here are the instructions to remove the songs:
Go to http://itunes.com/soi-remove.
Click Remove Album to confirm you'd like to remove the album from your account.
Sign in with the Apple ID and password you use to buy from the iTunes Store.
You'll see a confirmation message that the album has been removed from your account.
With all the righteous causes out there today, it’s puzzling that enough people would dedicate their time to cause Apple to make amends for giving them free music.