|Apple's iTunes has sparked a row with its competitors in the UK online music market by deciding to sell the charity single Do They Know It's Christmas? at a reduced price.|
Band Aid 20’s new single Do They Know It's Christmas? is set to become No.1 in this week’s charts, and the best-selling record of the year, selling 95,000 copies on its first day, and a further 205,000 in the following two days.
iTunes is selling the star-studded track for 79p, which is 70p short of the £1.49 demanded by Band Aid organisers. The company will be making up the difference out of its own pocket.
The move has been condemned by Apple's competitors who have accused the company of manipulating a charity event to win itself more customers.
The big players in the online music industry, including the re-legalised Napster, HMV and MyCokeMusic, had all agreed to sell the single for £1.49 and pass the proceeds to Band Aid for projects in the strife-torn Darfur region of Sudan and elsewhere in Africa.Dido, Robbie Williams and Chris Martin are among the stars on the new single, which is raising money to fight hunger in Africa.
Bob Geldof and Ultravox singer Midge Ure created Band Aid, a supergroup of 40 artists, in 1984, when the Do They Know It's Christmas hit single raised over 10 million pounds for famine relief in Ethiopia.