Apple Shuts down iPod Transfer Tool

Apple threatened the ISP-host for and creators of iPoddownload, a plug-in that allows users to transfer songs from any iPod to their iTunes library.  Typically, iPods are tied to only one iTunes library in order to limit sneaker-net piracy.  (via MacMinute and Paidcontent). 

Macworld helps put this in perspective, noting Apple’s other attempts to shut down iPod and iTunes software developments that could aid piracy.  Similar to Sony before it, Apple can’t figure out whether it’s a tech company or a music industry appeaser (Sony, of course, is actually a content creator).  As a tech company, Apple would be striving to make the most useful products possible.  But, when working with the music industry, Apple has decided to limit its product’s uses.  It doesn’t matter that, for instance, people with more than one computer would find something like iPodDownload very useful.  Because it could be used for infringing uses, it shouldn’t be used at all.

Meanwhile, Microsoft makes its pitch to aid copy-protection via Longhorn and reap the license fee rewards.  While MS and Apple and others duel to make the least useful products, we too rarely stop to think: is it all worth it? Is all this just socially wasteful?