Apple’s decision to give away U2’s latest album was met with a negative reception, focusing on the fact that the album appeared on all iTunes user’s music collections, whether they wanted it or not. The fact that there was no immediately obvious way to delete the album further inflamed passions. The fact the album was “pushed” onto all users and then made difficult to get rid of made iTunes customers view it less as a gift than as an unwanted invasion into their music collection. Was Apple’s U2 giveaway a blunder?

They broke their own model
Apollo CEO Pete Johnson recently weighed in on the controversy, viewing it as an example of Apple accidentally pointing our their own flaws. “I think that by placing free music into its users’ iTunes account, Apple inadvertently acknowledges the death of MP3 collecting as it were. They broke their own model by forcing content on their user instead of opting through a transaction in order to add to the user’s collection”. Perhaps offering the album for free download and advertising it heavily on the app store would have improved perceptions of the giveaway and drove attention to Apple’s other MP3 downloads. Instead, Apple allowed their campaign to be framed as a malevolent marketing scheme, rather than a gift of appreciation to loyal customers.

You can view the full quote and opinions from other tech and marketing professionals at WTOP’s website: ‘Dissecting Apple’s U2 blunder (or was it genius?)