A Great Gift Or Spam?

On September 9, iTunes subscribers looked in their libraries and found U2’s latest album, Songs of Innocence.

Apple’s PR department promoted this drop in of the group’s songs as a great gift. But is it really?

Those who aren’t U2 fans might not care for their music. Some were confused by the attached price of $9.99 for the album before learning that no charge would actually be made to their iTunes account.

For Apple and U2, this “drop in” was a way to brag that this new album was already in the hands of half a billion fans, making it the largest album release ever.

Was this a brilliant promotion that gave us some free stuff to be grateful for? Or is it just “dystopian junk mail” as one Washington Post writer asserted?

The album wasn’t requested. It promoted a product (U2). And, without permission, it was placed into accounts that were password-protected and private.

So, did Apple cross a line?

What do you think?