Why, in a world where everything is available as a stream of digital data, would you want to have to go to a store, or use up all that space at home on BluRay discs or your vinyl collection? OK Boomer!

An actual Boomer, yesterday

Well, our naive and misguided Gen Z friends, it’s not quite that simple. One thing you still hear from a lot of Outposters is their refusal to give up on physical media. This, they feel, insulates them from unwanted special editions, rights issues, and other potential future problems. The biggest one being that legally you don’t own a single damn bit of your digital media.

That’s right. Get anything from PlayStation Online to the iTunes Store and you don’t actually own it. Sure, you paid money and you think you “bought” it. You didn’t though. You rented it. And it can disappear at any time. Or be changed.

Already there is talk of putting new advertisements into older movies. Imagine the Off World colonies blimp selling Netflix in Blade Runner. Think you like your current Directors Ultimate Edition of that movie in your digital media library stored in your providers cloud? Well if Ridley wakes up from his nap and wants to change it all again then it can be over-written.

This may change though. There is a lawsuit spinning up against Apple. It is a putative class action that could forever change the way digital content is sold online.

The Hollywood Reporter ran the story that a U.S. federal judge has rejected a motion to dismiss a case by the tech giant.

David Andino, the lead plaintiff in this case, says that Apple reserving the right to terminate access to what consumers have “purchased” (something they have done) is unacceptable. Apple tried to have the case dismissed, arguing that geographical issues and licensing rights are the cause.

However, the judge rejected this motion. In his statement U.S. District Court Judge John Mendez says:

“Apple contends that ‘[n]o reasonable consumer would believe’ that purchased content would remain on the iTunes platform indefinitely. But in common usage, the term ‘buy’ means to acquire possession over something. It seems plausible, at least at the motion to dismiss stage, that reasonable consumers would expect their access couldn’t be revoked.”

Amazon is also reportedly facing a similar lawsuit over Prime Video purchases.

Watch this space!

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