Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

The Beatles Aren't Yesterday, After All: Two Million Songs, 450,000 Albums in a Week

Question every Internet wisenheimer had last week: “Doesn’t every Beatles fan already have every Beatles song?

Answer: Nope. Consumers had room for two million Fab Four songs, and another 450,000 albums in their digital catalogs, it turns out. That’s from EMI, via Billboard.

Top album: “Abbey Road.” Top song: “Here Comes the Sun.” Both excellent choices.

Probably didn’t hurt that the George Harrison song is one of the ones Apple is using in its new campaign. Also, it’s a great freaking song:

The really important point to make about the Beatles on iTunes, at least from Apple’s perspective: It will be be nice for the company if it sells a lot of Beatles songs. But it’s really great for them that they get to advertise iTunes using Beatles songs.

And remember, once people get to iTunes, it doesn’t matter to Apple if they buy Beatles songs, Angry Birds or episodes of “House.”

You can put a price on that kind of marketing campaign. But whatever Apple paid (I have a hunch it was a big sum, at least part of which was up front), it will end up getting its money’s worth.


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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik