FutureFive NZ - Judge orders Jobs to answer iTunes antitrust questions

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Judge orders Jobs to answer iTunes antitrust questions

A US federal judge has ordered Apple CEO Steve Jobs to answer questions in an iTunes antitrust lawsuit. 

Reuters reports that Jobs may be required to answer questions for a total of two hours.

The class-action lawsuit was brought about by a group of consumers that say Apple created a music-downloading monopoly with iPod and iTunes. 

At the centre of the case is a piece of software called Fairplay that allowed only music bought on iTunes to be played on the iPod, says the complaint.

Apple competitor, RealNetworks, responded to the Fairplay software in 2004 by releasing an update that would allow customers to play music downloaded from its site on their iPods. 

"Apple quickly announced a software upgrade to iTunes that once more blocked music from RealNetworks,” the complaint reads. 

"The court finds that Jobs has unique, non-repetitive, first hand knowledge about Apple's software updates in October 2004 that rendered the RealNetworks's digital music files once again inoperable with iPods," a law professor told Reuters. 

Steve Jobs went on an official leave of absence for media reasons on January 18th.

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