A Milestone for iTunes; a Windfall for a Downloader

From the New York Times:

It may well have been the best 99 cents Alex Ostrovsky ever spent.

Early yesterday, he paid that amount to download “Speed of Sound,” a song on the Coldplay album “X&Y,” from the iTunes Music Store, the Internet music shop that Apple Computer started less than three years ago.

He did not know it, but it was the billionth song the site had sold, and Apple was not about to let that go unnoticed.

So at 12:45 a.m., Mr. Ostrovsky’s phone rang. It was an Apple employee, telling him that in addition to the song, Apple was giving him a 20-inch iMac, 10 iPods and a $10,000 gift card for the iTunes store. It is even establishing a scholarship at the Juilliard School in his name.

Mr. Ostrovsky, 16, was still trying to absorb it all yesterday. His phone had been ringing all day, alternating between reporters wanting to know his reaction and friends wanting to congratulate him.

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