Document processing has faced that for years. The "DOC" format has become the defacto standard thanks largely to popularity of Microsoft Word, although many other products can use that format. JPG is the standard for pictures with nearly all software and cameras using that format. PDF is a popular format that is "locked" therefore perfect for online contracts, and other documents that you don't want people to change.
Where am I going with this? The standardization of audio formats on the web. MP3 has become the standard for audio books and music for years now. I can make a CD with MP3 songs or an audio book and play it my Suburban, my DVD player in the family room, a computer, even the bedroom TV. But, because of concerns over digital rights management some players in the industry claim that I have to use their devices if I download music off the net. This is really stupid because I can get it other places for free, and since they are forcing me to have an iPod to download off of the iTunes sight I am not likely to even try. But, if they have MP3, and have the price per song reasonable, I would gobble them up. The problem? Still with the recording industry execs who demand such insane fees for the music. But, I am of the notion that if everyone were to have the ability to download the music in a standard format that they wouldn't bother getting the stuff from the millions of free sites out there. For instance, I want to hear the new work by U2, How To Dismantle an Atomic Bomb. Now I know that I can go to iTunes and download it for about a buck per song. Am I going to? No way, because if I have the software to download it I can't transfer it to my non-iPod MP3 player. Stinks. So, I can play it on my wonerful computer but that is all.
What if they had an open format. What if the songs were 24 cents a piece, close to the cost of printing a 4x6 picture. Well, I might jump on that. U2 probably gets less than that per song now, there would be no cost for the development of the CD, shipping, warehousing, middlemen, etc.
What can I do about it? Not one thing except complain. But, I will continue to collect my MP3s and burn them to CDs and play them on my MP3 players, and smile every time.