What disappearing iTunes releases look like from the other side

I’m obliged to Christophe Abric, who’s on a mailing list with me, for pointing to an interesting case study of why albums appear and then disappear on the iTunes Music Store. The case in question is King Crimson, and the story is made a bit more transparent through the online diary of Robert Fripp, the band’s constant anchor. Apparently EMI snuck King Crimson tracks into the online stores after the band’s contract with them expired at the end of 2003, in spite of ongoing royalty disagreements—the band would have received 6 cents per track (Apple gets 4) vice the 69 cents kept by the label for “technology investments.” Riiight. More info in this Blogcritics post.

This sort of hijinks probably also explains the appearance and quick disappearance of the Sex Pistols’ Never Mind the Bollocks… in the store over the last few months.

(I thought I posted this on Friday, but it seems to have disappeared.)